Transcript: Episode 0057

This transcript:
  1. Was machine generated.
  2. Has not been checked for errors.
  3. May not be entirely accurate.


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Welcome to the Stone Choir podcast. I am Corey J. Mahler, and I'm still whoa. On today's Stone

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Choir, we are going to be discussing the subject of religion. What is a religion? This will be

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the beginning of a three-part arc where we discuss religion in specific terms and we'll

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get into in a minute. In the second episode of this arc, we're going to be discussing specifically

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Judaizing and Gnosticism within Christianity because those are two key examples of false

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religions that have been inserted into the practices and beliefs of many of us today.

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And the final third episode in this arc is going to deal specifically with apostasy. We're going

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to deal with the fact that much of the New Testament speaks directly to Christians in the

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church in terms of falling away. There are a lot of things that we today read as pronouncements that

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we think, well, that must apply to pagans because it's talking about people going to hell. When you

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look at in proper context, it's clearly talking to Christians in the church who have or are falling

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away and will be damned because they have lost the faith that was given to them. So this is going

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to be an arc that's going to be a lot of law. There's not going to be a lot of good news in this

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for us. And the reason that we're tackling it is that this is fundamentally about the state of the

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church today. As we look at all of our churches, multiple denominations, they're all in varying

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states of this decay. And the distinction that we're going to highlight today with definition

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of religion is specifically going to exclude what God you're talking about or what practices you

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perform. It's going to focus entirely on what is your moral compass? What is the origin of the

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right and wrong that you hold to in your heart and in your life? Because there's a degree of passion

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that we bring to our morality, that we bring to our violates, our conscience, that is absent from

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when we discuss doctrine. So we'll differentiate between the two of those in this episode.

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As I said, this is going to be a weighty series to begin the year. If you're a regular listener,

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we're coming back after a three-week hiatus. Thank you to everyone who was checking the

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back catalog along the way. I had an interesting exchange with somebody on X a couple of days ago

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talking about listening to old episodes. And he said something that I didn't really

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thought about, but I want to highlight just to say to everybody, he mentioned that when he first

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found Stone Choir, he jumped around topically and sort of picked the episodes that seemed like

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they were the most interesting to him. And he said that when he did that, it was depressing. It

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really hit him over the head. And so he went back to the beginning and listened in order,

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and he had the opposite experience. And I realized that that's something that we wouldn't have really

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thought about because we very consciously manage kind of the psychic ebb and flow, like the energy

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of the episodes. These are woo-woo terms, but you know what I mean? It's kind of like making an

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album or a mixtape. We don't want to hammer every, every week because that's brutal. Nobody wants

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that. At the same time, if it's all just light and less, not interesting, but maybe less serious,

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less urgent, you need to mix those up because we all need a break. We personally need a break from

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some of the heavy stuff. And you as listeners certainly do. So I will say once again, if you've

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discovered us recently whenever you're jumping in, we highly, highly encourage you to go back to

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the very beginning and just listen to them in order. You know, if you get 20 minutes into an

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episode and you're like, this is dumb. I don't care about this crap. That's fine. We're not telling

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anyone to hang on our every word. There's nothing like that about this. It's just that there's a lot

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of interesting information and points that are vital in one episode that carry over in a future

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episode. So when we speak, we expect that you've heard the rest. And while we try to make sure

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each episode stands alone, the continuum also tells a story. And additionally, you know, some of the

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episodes are gnarly. There's some heavy things in there. If those are the only ones you listen to,

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this is going to be a fundamentally different sort of podcast than if you listen to them the

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way that we're presenting them. But we're conscious of that. And we want the time that you spend with

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us to not to be edifying and, you know, to challenge you, but not just to completely be you up and

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leave you bruised and broken because that's, that's not the point. The point is for us to come out of

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these discussions strengthened and better off than we were before. Before we get into the main

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subject, I just want to give a brief thanks to everyone who has donated to us in the past year.

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We've had everyone who donates anything as generous, you know, great or small. We had a

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couple particularly large donations at the end of this year that I wanted to acknowledge. But

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for anyone to give anything of value to a stranger is an act of kindness and generosity. And it means

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a great deal of both Corey and myself. And it makes a big difference. So thank you to everyone

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who's done that. Additionally, and at least as much, thank you to everyone who shares the

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stone choir with friends and family, whoever's going to benefit from it. And thank you to,

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you know, for leaving five star ratings and letting people know that this is content worth sharing.

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Honestly, I think the most valuable thing to us is the fact that people would spend time

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listening to a couple of guys talk about this stuff. Because like I said, some of these episodes

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and subjects are challenging. They're hard to hear. And they're intentionally hard to hear,

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because nobody's talking about them. That's why we started to begin with tackle issues

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that are being neglected. So for you to spend two hours out of 168 a week listening to us,

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it means a great deal. And anyone who doesn't donate, God bless you too. Like it's,

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none of this has ever had anything to do with what we receive. It's a podcast, it's free.

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Please take it, enjoy it, benefit from it. If there's a good episode, listen to it more

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than once, you're going to learn some things, even the second or third time through.

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Nothing that we ever do here is going to be for benefit. I'm clearly like,

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I got doxxed and punished for this. Chory has been attacked and, you know, whatever.

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The fact that anyone would think anything kindly of us and share with us means a great

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deal. So thank you. The reason that we're going to be tackling this arc in the coming weeks as we

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come back from our break, which by the way was great. I thank you for coming back after three

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weeks off. That helped me a lot. It's, it takes a lot of time and effort and energy to produce

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these. And I didn't realize going in how much work it was going to be. So I actually have a lot of

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respect now for the guys who churn the stuff out all the time. It's really difficult. Not them

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whining. Like this is not, oh, we're great. It's just, it was nice to have a few weeks off. And

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Cory and I actually kick started a couple other things as we had that downtime that will

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be paving dividends in the coming year. So I'm looking forward to when some of those other

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things come to fruition. This particular arc where we're talking about religion as a subject

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itself and how we define it in terms that we can see inside our own Christian churches and even

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inside our own hearts where one religion ends and another one begins is a really tricky subject.

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The reason that it's challenging is that particularly as Christians, we go to church,

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believe the Bible, confess God, we do all the normal Christian stuff. And we think in terms of,

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okay, I'm a Christian and that means exclusively I'm a Christian. That's the way it's supposed to be.

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But the reality is that is not the case for any of us because we're not perfect.

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The only time we will be perfect Christians is when we die and God perfects us in eternity.

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Until then, we are imperfect Christians. And that doesn't simply mean that we are free from sin.

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It means that we are incapable of having the perfect relationship to God and the perfect

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confession of God that he demands. And those are also sins that Christ paid the price for.

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So when we talk about these things, we don't want people to be sitting around and fretting like,

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oh no, am I doing something terrible and God is going to hate me and send me to hell?

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That's not the point. The point is for us to keep in mind what it is that we're thinking and

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believing and confessing if it's contrary to Scripture. So the specific focus of today,

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when we're talking about religion in terms of source of morality,

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deliberately excludes who is your God, because Scripture is clear. We're going to talk about

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that in the third episode on apostasy. There are many within the church for all times and in all

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places who will say, I am a Christian. I am a God for you. I'm a believer in God, who in fact are not.

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Whatever false beliefs, whatever false religion they hold is in fact their true religion. And so

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the fact that someone says, I am a Christian, especially today, is fundamentally meaningless.

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It's truly meaningless to say you're Christian. Now, that doesn't mean we shouldn't say it,

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but what does it mean to be Christian? And that's the question. And the reason that's important

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is that there are people who say that they're Christian and they'll have some of the religious

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beliefs of Christianity, but they will additionally have other religious beliefs, other beliefs of

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right and wrong, of morality that will not have come from Scripture. And when you're not getting

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your morality from Scripture, you're still getting it from somewhere. And so the definition of religion

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that we're going to talk about today, as I said, excludes practices. It excludes names. It excludes

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deities. It excludes anything, all the trappings. It only focuses on what is your moral compass?

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Where are you getting your right and wrong? Because if you're getting them from God,

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you're getting them from Scripture, and you're going to be a good Christian. You're going to have

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only Christian beliefs. However, the second that anyone begins to get his moral compass, his right

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and wrong definitions from anywhere other than Scripture, he is importing a false religion,

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and he now has two religions. And we all have at least two religions. It's inherent because

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we're sinners, because we are incapable of perfectly worshiping God. One of the crucial things that

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Luther really gets right in the small catechism, when he talks about the first commandment,

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you shall have no other gods before me. As we've talked about this in the past before,

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doesn't mean in terms of rank. It means in the presence of, as in, I see before me tons of soil.

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What you're beholding is before you. That is not what it means when God says,

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we are to have no other gods before him. It means in the presence of, and when God is omnipresent,

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there is nothing that is not present for God. So when he says, you can't have any gods in my

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presence, he's saying, period. He's saying, anywhere in a superset of the finite universe,

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there's no place where you can have any gods other than me. So it's not ranking. It's not that God's

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one in football's two, and you just try to keep football becoming number one. There's one in one

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God only. Every time we sin, we violate that. Every single time we sin, whether knowingly or

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unknowingly, we are disobeying God's will, and we're saying, I reject God. I'm my own God for

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the next 30 seconds or five minutes or the next day. I'm going to do this other thing,

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and then maybe I'll get back to God later. For right now, this thing that I'm doing,

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I am my own God, because God has told me one thing, I'm going to do another. And whether it's

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conscious or unconscious, that is enacting a separate religion. And you don't need to think

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of yourself in terms of being a God. You're just like, well, I'm just going to do what I want. I

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don't think it's so bad. And that's the root of this. If your morality is not coming from God,

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if it's not coming from Scripture, you're going to go down a path where all manner of error is

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going to occur. We've seen this from the very beginning. In the Garden of Eden, God said to

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Adam and Eve, where Eve was taught by Adam, you may surely eat of every tree of the garden,

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but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it,

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you shall surely die. Now, it's interesting that this is the origin of morality. This is God not

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only giving Adam a command of what is good and evil, but the tree itself, the fruit embodied

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knowledge of good and evil. And so, this was in perfection. This was in perfect creation.

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There was still the ability to have knowledge of evil. And while we don't know what that means,

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because we're fallen and we're on the other side of knowing all sorts of evil, we at least know

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that God's will is that which is good and anything contrary to it is evil. And so,

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that fruit embodied the moral compass that they were to have. And every religion ever since then,

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by whatever form, always does the same thing. It always teaches good and evil. And the distinction

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is what a Satan say to her. But the serpent said to the woman, you will not surely die,

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for God knows that when you eat of it, your eyes will be open and you will be like God,

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knowing good and evil. So, he turned it on its head and he said, this knowledge is beneficial.

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This thing that God said is evil, I'm telling you, it's going to be fine. And she saw the look

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delicious and so, she ate some, gave it to her husband, and he was like, okay, great. He listened

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to her, he sinned, he ate the apple, we all die because of it. That moral compass right there

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in the garden is reflected throughout every other sin and every other religion to her false

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that has ever existed. There's always what is good, what is evil, and then what choices are we going

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to make when confronted with it. And Eve didn't listen to God's voice. She didn't listen to Adam's

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voice when he told her what God had said. She said something and Satan tricked her. She's like, okay,

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well, that sounds good. She stopped having God as her God. She let Satan be her God just for a few

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seconds. He told her something different than what God said. He's like, I like your morality,

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I like your good and evil better than God's good and evil. I'm going to go that way. And

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everything that's happened ever since is a result of that moral decision.

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I think it is helpful to go through a few terms as we start out this episode. Just

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in general, some of the terms that are related to the matter of religion. For instance, where do

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we get the word religion? What does it mean in its core sense? What does it mean today? What does

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it mean for us when we say religion? And so religion has the word itself has a relatively

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complicated etymology because it is related to a number of terms, a number of verbs in Latin.

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And if you understand those terms, it gives you a general idea of what religion

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in its core sense means. And so the two big ones are relego and relego,

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the difference of an E versus an I in the verb there. relego is obviously from lego.

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Re in Latin is just again or an intensifier, much like in English. But relego means to gather,

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collect again, or this is the most salient one in the case of the etymology of religion,

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to go over or through again, for instance, in reading or thought. And so of course, we can see

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where we get this sense of part of religion is going over the religious texts themselves. And

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this is true, both of true religion, in this case, scripture, and of false religion, because false

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religions also have their scriptures, they have their beliefs that you go over again and again

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and again. The other verb relego and I is to bind fast. And so religion binds you to a certain set

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of beliefs and actions, it binds you to these tenants, to these beliefs, these claims of

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the system itself. So between these two Latin verbs, you get the sense of what we have in

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English as religion. Additionally, there is the issue of obligatio, which is tangentially related,

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which is just you can probably guess from the word itself, it's an obligation or a binding

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related to relego. But related to this, there is the term cult. This is a vitally important

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term to understand, generally speaking, because this is more of what we see in our culture today

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with regard to false religion. But cult itself is actually a neutral term. In English, it has

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started to take on almost an exclusively negative term, except in specialized usage.

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But that's false. Cult is a neutral term. Cult simply means a system of religious veneration,

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and so for instance, we all belong to the cult of Christ. We belong to the cult of God. We belong

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to the Christian cult in the neutral sense, which is the proper sense of the word cult.

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Now, there is of course the negative sense that is largely come to predominate in common usage

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in English. So Mormonism is a cult in that sense. Cult meaning people who are strange in some way,

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who are out there who have a weird religion. And so a cult would be a smaller group with

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strange practices. But bear in mind that cult, again, is a neutral term. It simply means a system

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of religious veneration, is a system of religious practice. That comes from cultus, which just

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means the same thing in Latin. We dropped the US, we brought it into English. It comes from a verb

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that means to cultivate land, or to till, or to take care of a field or a garden. Also means to

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inhabit, to frequent, or in the figurative sense, it came to mean to worship, honor, or revere.

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There is a connection here. We won't get into it in this episode. We'll get into it in a future

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episode on a different topic. But there is a connection here between this land and worship,

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honor, and reverence. But that is what we mean when we say cult. And it is notable

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that one of the words we get from cult, from cultus, is culture. And so at a very base level,

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at a foundational level, our culture is an outgrowth of our religion, because culture

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is an outgrowth of cult. And so what you have in your culture is going to be based on

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a religion or multiple religions. And so some of these things that we just assume are

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so-called secular, they are actually religious, because the culture itself is religious by nature.

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And so you may think that something is neutral in the sense of secular, or secular in the

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sense of neutral, and that it's something about which Christians can disagree or we can ignore.

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It's not that important. But there's a reason the second episode we did was on the genealogy of

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ideas, because the source of these things matters. It matters. The foundation upon which you build

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your life. We should think of a very obvious example here, a very obvious parable from Christ.

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Upon what sort of foundation are you building? The same thing applies, not just to your life,

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but also to your culture, to your civilization. What is the source from which you have derived

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these ideas or these beliefs? If your culture tells you that you have to believe A,

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why is it saying that you have to believe A? What is the source of that? Because if you go back,

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you will eventually find a religion. And if the religion you find is not Christianity,

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then the culture is telling you you have to believe something false from a false religion.

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That's worship. That's worship of a false God. That is something that we are not permitted to do.

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And Woe mentioned Luther's commentary on the First Commandment. I actually want to read

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just one paragraph. This is from the large catechism instead of the small catechism,

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which the large catechism is obviously larger. It expands on what is said in the small catechism.

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I'll actually read two paragraphs so I can give you the context.

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The first paragraph is just going over the actual text of the First Commandment,

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but I'll read the second half of it. What is the force of this and how is it to be understood?

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What does it mean to have a God, or what is God? Answer. A God means that from which we are to

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expect all good, and to which we are to take refuge in all distress, so that to have a God

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is nothing else than to trust and believe in Him from the whole heart. As I have often said,

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that the confidence and faith of the heart alone make both God and an idol.

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That is an important point for us to bear in mind. When it comes to belief in something,

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if we rely on something that is not God, if we place our trust in a thing that is not God,

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we are giving worship to that thing that is part of a false religion, that is cult,

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that is the worship of a deity, and if it is not Christ, if it is not God, then it is a

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false worship of a false deity. It is idolatry, and we find that all over our culture,

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practically in every nook and cranny. Now, I want to be very clear. We do not mean that you cannot,

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as a child, look to your parents for good. Your parents were provided to you by God,

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the good that they render to you ultimately comes from God, and so it is fine, in fact,

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it is required by the Fourth Commandment and elsewhere in Scripture, to be thankful to your

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parents, to honor your parents, but you are doing that in recognition that the good they

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have provided you ultimately comes from God. The problem is when you are looking to something

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as ultimate in itself, or when it is something that has an ultimate object that is not, or an

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ultimate source, that is not God, and we find that in our culture. Every time you are looking for

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comfort, or meaning somewhere that is not ultimately grounded in the things of God,

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you are worshiping an idol. And Woe mentioned that the sense of having no other gods before God

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simply means to have no other gods. Thou shalt have no other gods is a

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perfectly good paraphrase of the First Commandment. You don't need the before me if that confuses you,

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but we can look to Deuteronomy to get God's answer on this question.

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See now that I, even I am he, and there is no God beside me. I kill and I make alive,

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I wound and I heal, and there is none that can deliver out of my hand.

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There is no other God. The issue of the First Commandment is not whether you are going to worship

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God as supreme, or have God as one of a pantheon. The issue of the First Commandment is that there is

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one God, and that if you have anything else to which you are looking for this ultimate source

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of meaning, or comfort, or whatever it happens to be, then you have an idol, you have a false God,

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you have a false religion. And as Christians, and the point of this episode, we need to be looking

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at the things we believe, and figuring out the ultimate source of those beliefs, because if we

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cannot trace them back to the things of God, then they are not of God. And if they are not of God,

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they are part of another cult. They are part of some other system of worship, because they are

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the worship of some other God, which is to say an idol, a false God.

25:37.240 --> 25:43.320
And this sort of genealogical examination of these ideas is something we've talked about

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since the very beginning. I want to clarify something. When we talk about the genealogy of

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ideas on Stone Choir, we are not talking about encouraging some sort of exhaustive,

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historical examination of every nook and cranny of a subject. We're saying you hold a belief.

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Where did you get it from? Where did they get it from? Where did he get it from? Where did he get

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it from? It's just like your own genealogy. It doesn't need to be complicated. Just give me the

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names and the dates in the locations. That's the origin of the thing. If you go back far enough,

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you're going to find the ultimate origin in whatever sense. An example of this, I was having a

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conversation a couple of weeks ago with someone who used to not be Christian and had explored

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Kabbalah and some other things. And I don't remember what we were talking about briefly, but

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he referenced something else. And I said, yeah, if you dig down that path far enough,

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you're inevitably going to find the Sephiroth, which is the Kabbalistic tree of life. And that's

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about all I know about it. And he got really excited because he knew a whole lot about it.

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I didn't know at the time that he had studied Kabbalah. I just knew from my own experience that

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whenever I looked at the genealogy thing, just superficially, like this guy said this thing

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and then he learned it from this other guy, I could go back just a few steps. And I'm going

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to find this sort of Kabbalistic hermeticism. And I'm going to find you. If you look on Wikipedia,

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you're going to find the Sephiroth over on the right because there's an entire series of articles

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that deal with that stuff. And so for my purposes, that's all I want to know. I don't delve into that

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crap. It's demonic. I don't want to know anything. But so I think when I talked to him, he probably

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thought like I had been interested too. I'm not. I don't I don't want to know. For me, the genealogy,

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the examination of whatever idea I'm running down, when I go back far enough and I find Jewish

27:44.200 --> 27:49.720
black magic, that's the end of the search. I know the origin of that thing. I don't need to go back

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further. I don't need to understand any more about it than the fact that it has a wicked origin,

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the end. So when we talk about the genealogy of ideas on Stone Choir, sometimes it's very

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superficial. Yeah, I think one of the best examples that we gave in another early episode,

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we did one on the neglected matters in Scripture, one of the five examples we gave was of

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head coverings in the church. And we mentioned that for 1960 years, it was the almost universal

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practice in the Christian church for girls to cover their heads in church. Heads were to be

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covered because that's what God says in the New Testament. And in the late 1960s, the perfidious

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Jewish Betty Frieden Goldstein declared in the same year when she established the National

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Organization for Women, and she made the push to get abortion, the sacrifice of infants legalized,

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simultaneous at the very same time. The other project the Betty Frieden Goldstein had was to get

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head coverings out of churches. There is a concerted campaign by now to reach out to Christian

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women. This Jewish told Christian women, take off your head coverings, they're a symbol of the

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patriarchy, they're a symbol of your subjugation, remove them, send them in to now headquarters,

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we're going to ceremonially burn them. So today in our churches, when the subject of head coverings

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come up, pastors don't want to engage with the genealogy of ideas of how head coverings were

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destroyed 60 years ago. No, they want to deal with the genealogy of the idea of where did it begin,

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because if they can lock it into the cultural context of Corinth, then they can say, well,

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that doesn't apply to us. That's one of those things that's like shellfish, whatever, doesn't

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matter. That'd be fine, except that no Christian believed that for 1960 years. Every Christian

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did the opposite. They're Christians alive today who remember the opposite. There may be some older

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ladies listening to this very podcast who remember when it was still common in your churches for every

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woman to cover her head. Why? Because it was cultural. Well, as Corey was just saying, yeah,

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it was cultural because it was Christian. It was the Christian belief, it was the Christian religion

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of what is right and wrong, that was the norm. It was culture because it was part of the religion

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of Christendom, and it was only when this wicked Jewess came along and told Christians,

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you're free from that. You don't have to do that. In fact, it's bad. You shouldn't be doing that,

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because patriarchy is evil. She was making a moral claim against head coverings. See,

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the demon-worshipping wicked woman who told girls to take their head coverings off

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wasn't making a positive case from Scripture. She wasn't making the arguments the pastors are

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making today falsely. She was making an overt attack on heaven itself to say,

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there's no God, you have no masters, be your own girl boss. She didn't use that term,

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but that's exactly what we have today. We see girls left and right running around headless,

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not realizing that they're headless, and so what do they do? They follow their baser instincts.

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They do what they do because no one will stop them. If all the moral complaints that we have

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girls these days and the misbehavior, the things that they shouldn't be doing that they are,

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would they do those things if their heads were covered? It's a ridiculous question,

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because the answer is obviously no. There's no possible world where a girl who was actually

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devoutly covering her head would engage in the sort of behaviors that are the very opposite

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moral end of the spectrum, because it's a real thing. I think that head covering is a

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perfect example of the sort of morality that we're talking about today, because it's such a

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minor point. It's a small thing. It was never something that was a crucial part of the church

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in history. It was simply always done. Why? Because Scripture said to, and everyone's like,

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okay, well, God says to do it. This is what we do. It was cultural. It was normative for all

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Christians in all places and all times, almost without exception, until it was really 50 years

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ago, because it was the end of the 1960s when Goldstein came along and changed everything.

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In our churches, a wicked woman outside the faith, a child of Satan, said she gave us permission.

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Just as Satan gave Eve permission in the garden, you will not surely die. You don't have to wear

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a head covering. What are you doing? That's not how it works. You'll be fine. In fact, you'll be

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better off after you take it off than you were before. Eat the fruit. You'll be like God.

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It's the same proposition. It's always the same proposition. It's a small thing. It's not something

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that lights my hair on fire. When we discussed that in that early episode, it wasn't in vehemence.

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It wasn't in vigorous moral condemnation of the fact that probably virtually every girl listening

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right now doesn't cover her head. We're not worked up about that. We're simply pointing to the fact

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that Scripture says that should be the case. It's not for us as podcasters to tell you. Your husbands,

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your fathers, your pastors should be telling you, what do we find instead in the church?

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Today, in current year, in some of the congregations where girls have begun head covering,

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something has just taken off in the last couple of years,

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it causes pastors to become very uncomfortable. In some cases, they will arouse moral indignation

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against the practice of head covering that they don't find for any doctrinal issues,

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which is fascinating because the church always did it until 50 years ago, almost without exception.

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For a lot of ladies, it took until the 70s or 80s. Usually some of the older ones

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didn't break with tradition. They kept doing it because they didn't feel comfortable not doing it.

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But as new generations rose and everyone said, it's hunky dory to it, today,

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in our own seminaries and our own churches, pastors are deeply uncomfortable. They're angry

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about this particular issue. Why is that? Scripture said to do one thing, and yet they have a moral

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response against that thing. The nature of their moral response is egalitarianism. They are defending

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feminism against Christianity. The purpose of today's episode is to illustrate that this is what

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happens. These pastors who will teach through very patiently all manner of doctrinal error,

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confusion, and a manner of woman when something comes up. But if you do something,

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like re-establish even for yourself, if a woman privately wears it, doesn't say a word to anyone,

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she just shows up on Sunday with her head covered, everybody's going to notice. A lot of people are

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going to get uncomfortable. Some of the men in particular who are feminists, whether they omitted

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or not, they get really uncomfortable. Some of them get angry. There are pastors in the LCMS in

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particular at the highest levels who are angry that there are girls in our congregations who are

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doing this because it reasserts the fact of male headship. It's not that wearing a head covering

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is dominating a girl. It's an acknowledgement of the pre-existing ontological nature of the

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relationship of the sexes. We did a couple episodes specifically on the nature of women

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and on the history of feminism, and we cover this in more depth there.

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And so when today you have a moral indignation against that which is scriptural, that's a

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separate religion. Even when it's a pastor, even with someone who does all the stuff,

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he doesn't curse, he doesn't cheat on his tax, he doesn't do any of the moral things

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that you would think, well, clearly that guy is a good Christian, and he's a pastor,

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he's devoted his life, he's doing everything right. But when this thing comes up, he flips.

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He gets so angry that they will go around in secret and they will try to root out anyone

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who would deign to permit, let alone encourage this sort of behavior in our churches.

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That is a separate religion because there are all sorts of errors in the church today

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that are tolerated. What won't they tolerate? Because what you will not tolerate, what is

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way over your line, whatever your personal line is, that is your true religion. In today's world,

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our true religion isn't from God anymore. The things that get us fired up are not the things

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that God established. The things that get us fired up are the things that culture have established

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as moral. And the problem is that the culture is still religious. It is simply no longer

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predicated on Christian beliefs. And so left and right, you will find in the back catalog of Stone

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Choir, we dealt with head covering, slavery, racism, feminism, all substitute moralities.

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And those are the hot button issues of this day. And one of the reasons we did those episodes is that

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they were Bible studies. They weren't simply political screeds because this is not political

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in nature. This is moral in nature because it's coming from scripture. It's all coming from God.

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And when we try to separate the two, when we try to say, well, no, you can, we're going to carve

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all this stuff out and call it political. We're going to call it woke. As soon as you do that,

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it ceases to be a moral matter. But it's still moral because you still defend it with the vehemence

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that you don't even bring to things like the creeds and the Lord's Prayer and these things

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that are basic tenets of the Christian faith. Your religion is that which you defend the most

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vigorously. And even in the smallest, least significant example that we could think of,

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something like head coverings will elicit the greatest degree of vehemence. That itself

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is the issue. That is illustrating that there's a separate religion occurring

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even in the same pulpit that also espouses Christianity. And that's why this is so dire,

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because it's not Satan coming into our pulpits manifest and saying, forget the justification

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and stuff. Forget Jesus on the cross. We're going to do all this other evil stuff. No,

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he says, you can have all your Jesus stuff. Just do this one thing. You will not surely die.

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Don't worry about it. That's the distinction. See, Satan doesn't care how he gets you,

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as long as he gets you. Whatever trick works. And if you start disobeying God, you're off to the races.

38:44.520 --> 38:50.120
There's a particular set of questions that I have used a few times in order to highlight

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one of the points that Woe just made. I'm going to modify them slightly for the sake of the podcast,

38:58.200 --> 39:04.600
but I have two statements I'm going to make. See which one, initially just viscerally,

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offends you more. Jesus Christ is not God. That's the first statement.

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Martin Luther King was not a Christian. That's the second statement. Now, there is

39:23.160 --> 39:27.800
another word that I could use instead of Christian that usually elicits a stronger response,

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and it proves the point just as well. But again, for the sake of the podcast,

39:31.560 --> 39:39.160
I will refrain from using that word here. Most people in our culture will respond

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more negatively, significantly more negatively, to criticism of Michael King,

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or any of a number of other secular saints, as it were. Then they will to the other statement,

39:53.640 --> 40:01.480
which is blasphemy. Saying Jesus Christ is not God is blasphemous. It is a violation

40:01.480 --> 40:06.200
of the First Commandment. It is the violation of the Second Commandment as well. But

40:06.680 --> 40:16.040
even pastors, and I have tested this personally, even pastors will respond more negatively

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to their critique of one of these secular saints, so called, than a statement that is directly

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against the core of the Christian religion. What that tells you is that the individual who responds

40:32.920 --> 40:37.720
more negatively to the first statement or the second, depending on the order you read them in,

40:37.720 --> 40:41.160
if you're going to perform the test reading the statement about the secular saint,

40:41.160 --> 40:45.560
second is more effective. But the person who responds more negatively to that

40:47.720 --> 40:54.600
has a different God, and holds that God in higher esteem than he holds the Lord God.

40:56.200 --> 41:01.880
That's not just having another God. That's having another God as your supreme deity.

41:03.000 --> 41:07.400
Now, granted, you're not supposed to even have lesser gods in addition to the Lord God as your

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supreme deity. But making the Lord God a lesser deity is even worse. And that is what we see in

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our culture, because people are more offended when you speak against these idols than when you speak

41:21.880 --> 41:29.080
against the Lord God. We have comedians all the time making jokes about Christ. Christians don't

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bat an eye. Many Christians listen to that filth and laugh at it, find it funny. But these very

41:36.280 --> 41:42.840
same comedians wouldn't go anywhere near these secular saints, because that is the actual religion

41:42.840 --> 41:49.000
of our culture. That is the actual cult that forms the basis of our culture today.

41:50.520 --> 41:56.120
That is our system of religious veneration, because these are the actual gods in our system,

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or in this case, if you name the individuals, they are the priests of the gods of our system.

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And one of those gods, of course, is egalitarianism, is the belief, the contention,

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false on its face, that all men are equal. They'll even attempt to appeal, of course,

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to Scripture and say that, well, God made all men equal. That's not what Scripture says.

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We've been over that in other episodes, and we'll undoubtedly go over it in the future

42:22.280 --> 42:24.280
in other episode contexts as well.

42:26.680 --> 42:34.120
But you have a rampant worship of false gods in our culture, and Christians just go along with it,

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because they do not examine their priors, they do not examine their presuppositions,

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they do not look at the things that they believe and the things that they are doing.

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If you have a visceral reaction to someone critiquing some particular person,

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you need to look at why that is the case. If that is because the person was a Christian,

42:56.600 --> 43:00.760
and he is being attacked for his Christian faith, then that is a good Christian response.

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And you should be proud to have that, quite frankly. That is a good thing to have.

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That is a mark of a true Christian. But if the person being attacked, as it were, being critiqued,

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was not a Christian, which is the case with Michael King, of course, as we went over

43:17.400 --> 43:23.080
in our series on that. But if the person being critiqued is not a Christian, you have that same

43:23.080 --> 43:33.160
response. You are participating in a false religion because you have a learned and indoctrinated,

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most likely, visceral response to an implicit attack on one of your idols. And whether or

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not you recognize that you have that idol, if you have the response, you have the idol.

43:48.360 --> 43:55.400
And that is a point that I want to make very clear here. This is something that many don't recognize.

43:57.080 --> 44:04.680
Our culture is suffused with propaganda, much of it propaganda for false gods,

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for false worship, for false religions. Now, of course, everyone listening is going to go,

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well, of course, I know there's propaganda. That's not what I mean. There is propaganda

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in places you do not expect it. There is propaganda in forms you do not see,

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because there are very intelligent and also very evil, but very intelligent,

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very well compensated men, very well educated men who dedicate their entire lives

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to drafting, to tweaking, to optimizing the sort of propaganda that just gets right past your filters.

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Because not everything that you see or hear or encounter is run through all of those conscious

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filters that you have in place, and you may have very good ones. You may spot the more obvious

44:54.120 --> 45:02.040
propaganda immediately, but the problem is you watched it, you still saw it. And part of the way

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that the human mind works is it integrates those things. It's basically Bayesian updating

45:08.120 --> 45:12.360
without getting into the specifics, but you see these things, you encounter these things,

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they seep in over time. And so even if you are watching, say, television or Netflix,

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whatever it happens to be, you're watching these obvious propaganda programs and you say,

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well, I know the propaganda and I could see its propaganda and so it's not dangerous to me because

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I recognize it. No, it's still dangerous to you. It is seeping into your mind over time.

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And if you find that you have some of these visceral reactions

45:38.760 --> 45:45.240
to certain critiques or certain attacks, there's your source. You have been indoctrinated.

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And we have this stuff all over our culture. There is a reason that we are instructed to

45:50.680 --> 45:56.120
avoid even the appearance of evil, that we are instructed to avoid spending time with the wicked.

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We are to guard ourselves against these things because they can infect us even when our guard

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is up. And so Christians should not be essentially watching television, really.

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Most of it is wicked. Are there some exceptions? Sure. Should you be paying for it? I'm going to

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go ahead and just say no because if you're paying for it, you are propping up the wicked system.

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You are literally tithing to Satan as a Christian. You shouldn't be doing that.

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We said this is going to be a law heavy episode and it's going to be because there are some realities

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of which you as a Christian need to be aware. Satan is prowling about as a roaring lion seeking

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to devour whom he can. He doesn't care if your guard is up or your guard is down. If he can get

46:46.200 --> 46:53.960
past it, it's irrelevant. And he is very good at this game. Now, I'm not telling you to despair.

46:53.960 --> 46:57.800
I'm not telling you that there's no hope because Satan is so good at his job.

46:58.680 --> 47:04.040
What I am saying is that as a Christian, you are to guard your eyes, your heart,

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your mind from these wicked things. If you expose yourself to them, they will have an effect,

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even if you recognize them as the wickedness that they are. That is why when we go over

47:16.600 --> 47:23.400
certain topics, we don't tell you, go and read this stuff for yourself. There are very real

47:23.480 --> 47:28.760
harms, at least potential harms involved in exposing yourself to certain things.

47:29.800 --> 47:34.040
As a Christian, you should want to deal with holy things, with things that are good,

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with things that are of God. Now, obviously, living in a fallen world, we cannot

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exclusively deal with those things. We are going to have to deal with the wicked world

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and its products to some degree. But you can control to how much of that you're exposed and

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the way in which you're exposed, and certainly whether or not your children are exposed.

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And too many Christians just let the television babies at their children.

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Do you think that the people in Hollywood who are producing those programs have your

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best interests in heart? Do you think that they have your children's best interests in heart?

48:08.360 --> 48:14.440
Do you think that they worship the Lord God? They are training your children to be religious.

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They are training them. They are indoctrinating them.

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They are initiating them into the cult, at least one of the cults, on which our culture is currently

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based. If something is not oriented toward God, it is necessarily oriented against or away from God.

48:32.120 --> 48:36.920
Christ is very clear about this. If you are not for him, you are against him.

48:39.000 --> 48:44.200
And so as Christians, we have to be careful about these things. And we have to look at

48:44.200 --> 48:49.720
the things that we believe and the way that we react to certain things or attacks or critiques

48:49.720 --> 48:54.680
of certain people and certain ideas. And we need to pay attention to how other Christians react

48:54.680 --> 49:00.840
as well. Because just because someone says that he is a Christian does not mean that he is.

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This is a problem that we see in church history and still today in the church generally.

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Many will look at just the external appearance of the thing. And they will say, well, that looks

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Christian. Now, there is something to be said for appearances. They do matter.

49:24.120 --> 49:28.520
Anybody who tells you appearance doesn't matter is lying to you. That's wrong. Appearances matter.

49:29.320 --> 49:32.920
We're never going to say they don't. We're not going to say that the liturgy isn't important.

49:32.920 --> 49:37.480
We're not going to say that decorating the church to be beautiful isn't important. All of these

49:38.120 --> 49:43.320
things matter. Of course, beauty flows from God. It is one of the transcendental. So beauty does matter.

49:44.920 --> 49:49.960
But we would caution you not to make that the totality of your assessment.

49:50.600 --> 49:56.760
There are other things that matter in addition to beauty, in addition to that external appearance.

49:56.760 --> 50:01.800
And sometimes if you dig more than skin deep as it were, you may find that it's not so beautiful

50:01.880 --> 50:09.160
on the inside. But there's the issue of the word concept fallacy. I've gone over this previously.

50:09.720 --> 50:15.720
And we see a version of this when someone will claim to be a Christian. He'll say he's a Christian.

50:15.720 --> 50:21.400
He'll even go to church. He may even religiously go to church. He may go Sunday and Wednesday.

50:23.720 --> 50:28.840
But then you start asking questions or you start discussing certain topics. And it turns out

50:29.400 --> 50:36.040
he has a totally different set of gods. He has a collection of idols in his heart

50:37.160 --> 50:42.280
that are contrary to the Lord God that have taken up residence in place of the Lord God.

50:44.920 --> 50:52.680
That is far easier to do in a culture such as ours that is not Christian. In a Christian culture,

50:52.680 --> 50:56.760
that would be that would be very difficult to do. Because in a Christian culture,

50:56.760 --> 51:01.240
you would go to church and then you would go back out into the world for your daily life and

51:01.240 --> 51:07.800
you would still be surrounded by Christians, Christian beliefs, Christian culture, Christian

51:07.800 --> 51:14.360
society. That is easier for someone to remain Christian in that setting. And that is one of

51:14.360 --> 51:18.920
the reasons that we want nations, we want governments, we want states to be Christian.

51:19.640 --> 51:25.160
Because if you live in a Christian context, the odds of you staying Christian are much higher.

51:26.760 --> 51:31.800
When we had Christendom in the West, by and large, the majority of people were Christian.

51:32.680 --> 51:38.040
Even those who were relatively marginal Christians stayed Christian because they lived in a Christian

51:38.040 --> 51:43.560
context. It matters. Scripture speaks to this. Train up a child in the way he should go. And

51:43.560 --> 51:49.800
when he is old, he will not depart from it. You are raising that child in a Christian context.

51:49.800 --> 51:55.080
That is part of what it means to train him up in the way he should go. And by doing that,

51:55.080 --> 52:03.000
you are keeping him in the faith. These things matter. And so when it comes to religion, when it

52:03.000 --> 52:09.480
comes to this cult, when it comes to our culture, you need to look at the things to which you are

52:09.480 --> 52:14.600
exposing yourself and you need to look at the things you believe, perhaps as a consequence of the

52:14.600 --> 52:19.400
things to which you were exposed or you allowed yourself to be exposed or you just outright

52:19.400 --> 52:27.720
exposed yourself deliberately. You cannot assume that just because, well, I go to church and I

52:27.720 --> 52:33.960
believe this so it must be Christian, that doesn't follow. What is the source of the thing you believe?

52:35.000 --> 52:41.560
If it came from someone, for instance, a Jewish feminist, then it isn't Christian.

52:41.720 --> 52:51.000
That idea, feminism, did not originate with God. It originated with Satan. It has been shoehorned

52:51.000 --> 52:58.120
into the church. And now we have men in the church, sometimes even men in robes, defending feminism

52:58.120 --> 53:04.920
that is incredibly wicked. And as Christians, it is our duty to push back against that. But first

53:04.920 --> 53:10.200
and foremost, before you can push back against it, you have to remove it from your own life. You have

53:10.200 --> 53:16.040
to remove it from your own heart. You have to root out those idols and destroy them.

53:17.320 --> 53:24.760
And this is why the definition narrowly of religion as focusing on morality is the test.

53:25.560 --> 53:32.760
Because you can confess the triune God with your lips. You can go to church. You can do the superficial

53:32.760 --> 53:40.600
trappings of that religion that has a name and a deity and a logo, has all the stuff that says,

53:40.600 --> 53:46.040
yeah, that looks like a religion. And then the other things in your life that don't necessarily

53:46.040 --> 53:52.280
have a logo that the gods don't necessarily have names, at least not ones you know. But if those

53:52.280 --> 53:57.800
are the sources of your active morality in your life, those are your gods, even while you're

53:57.800 --> 54:03.720
simultaneously confessing to be Christian. And while that's probably not as common with most of

54:03.720 --> 54:10.280
the stone choir audience, I guarantee you it is much more common with your pastors and with the

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leaders of your churches. Because they have all been taught by their own institutions, we are the

54:17.720 --> 54:24.760
experts. We are the more godly ones. We're going to run this stuff well. And if they were testing

54:24.760 --> 54:30.760
their inputs, as Cory was talking about, if they were carefully discerning that all of their doctrines

54:30.760 --> 54:36.280
and all of their beliefs and all their morality was only to be derived from Scripture, that would

54:36.280 --> 54:42.520
be true. But what we see today and what we've seen for certainly the last two centuries, especially

54:42.520 --> 54:53.880
in America, is that morality right and wrong is being originated in new fashions in secular,

54:53.880 --> 54:59.640
increasingly secularized, un-Christian culture. And then it's being imported into the church,

54:59.640 --> 55:03.960
and then they find a proof text somewhere in Scripture to say, look, this new thing that I

55:03.960 --> 55:08.760
just scraped off the sidewalk and I dragged in here, this is actually from the Bible. What's

55:08.760 --> 55:15.320
nothing of the sort? It's a dog turd. You brought in filth, and then you baptize it, and then you

55:15.320 --> 55:20.280
give it to people until then that's Christian teaching. That is the second commandment as it's

55:20.280 --> 55:27.400
ordered by Roman Catholics and Lutherans. Do not bear falsely God's name. Lying about what God says

55:27.400 --> 55:33.320
is a violation of that commandment. When you say that God says something, and he didn't say that,

55:33.320 --> 55:38.840
that is much worse than what we typically think of. We think of cursing using God's name profanely,

55:39.880 --> 55:45.800
using GD it. That's bad. It's evil. It's not as evil as saying, I'm from God, and let me tell

55:45.800 --> 55:51.640
you what God really said. God didn't really say that. He actually said the opposite, and let me

55:51.640 --> 55:58.360
explain how. That's typical in our churches today, across the board. One of the verses that Cory and

55:58.360 --> 56:05.000
I will most frequently refer to is from the beginning of 1 Timothy 4. Now the Spirit

56:05.000 --> 56:10.920
expressly says that afterwards some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful

56:10.920 --> 56:17.320
spirits and teachings of demons through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,

56:17.320 --> 56:22.600
who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created to be received

56:22.600 --> 56:28.520
with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. There's a lot just in this one passage

56:28.520 --> 56:35.960
that teaches many different aspects of this lesson. One, some will depart from the faith.

56:36.600 --> 56:40.680
It's not talking about unbelievers. We're not talking about pagans here. We're talking about

56:40.680 --> 56:46.120
people who were in the church who had the faith, and then what did they do? They devoted themselves

56:46.120 --> 56:53.400
to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons. Where are the sources of these teachings,

56:53.400 --> 56:59.880
either their scripture or their wickedness? Because everything that is true, everything

56:59.960 --> 57:07.240
that is from God is either naturally revealed in nature or it's in scripture. Not every single

57:07.240 --> 57:11.880
thing that is true is found in scripture. It's not how God arranged things. But when you start

57:11.880 --> 57:19.080
talking about morality, when you start talking about right and wrong, that is distinct. Now right

57:19.080 --> 57:25.480
and wrong is written on the hearts of men. That is part of the image of God, which is damaged in

57:25.480 --> 57:32.200
the fall. For some, it is so damaged that some of those things are gone entirely. I'm going to give

57:32.200 --> 57:36.760
another example of something from past episodes that again illustrates the point we're trying to make

57:36.760 --> 57:44.920
here today. There are some races that are inherently more wicked than others. Some of you listening

57:44.920 --> 57:50.600
right now will get very angry at that. That's blasphemy. Is it blasphemy against scripture?

57:50.600 --> 57:56.360
No, actually scripture says the same thing in multiple places and we see it in reality. We

57:56.360 --> 58:02.760
can explain it theologically. We devoted an entire episode in the race series of Stone Choir to the

58:02.760 --> 58:10.360
biological nature of race and then to criminality. Now criminality directly correlates with certain

58:10.360 --> 58:20.120
races. Now criminality is the government word. It's the secular world word for sin. If something

58:20.200 --> 58:25.160
is sinful, we typically make a law around it. We used to have a lot more of those laws because we

58:25.160 --> 58:30.200
said a lot more things were sinful. As we found fewer and fewer sins in scripture, we got rid of

58:30.200 --> 58:35.160
those laws. But we didn't end up with fewer laws, incidentally. We have more laws than ever because

58:35.160 --> 58:40.200
there are all these new sins, things that weren't sinned 60 or 100 or 200 years ago. Today they're

58:40.200 --> 58:47.880
sins. Today they're crimes, but they're not Christian sins. They're not crimes against God.

58:48.600 --> 58:54.920
And so this is the crucial distinction here. If you look at these matters as something being

58:54.920 --> 59:00.200
less Christian or more Christian, and your only concern is to have the more Christian version,

59:00.200 --> 59:06.680
you're missing out on the fact that either it is of Christ or it is of the devil. There are only two

59:06.680 --> 59:12.440
sources for morality. Either it's God or it's hell. And if you're getting your morality from hell,

59:13.080 --> 59:21.000
well, the end conclusion there is obvious. When 1 Timothy sets the floor so low for teachings of

59:21.000 --> 59:28.200
demons and what deceitful spirits are bringing into our midst, again, when this devotion to

59:28.200 --> 59:34.040
teachings of demons is in the church, that's what scripture says. So when Cori and I say the same

59:34.040 --> 59:39.000
thing, we say that they're wicked men in the church, in pulpits, teaching the teachings of demons.

59:39.000 --> 59:45.560
And we look at the examples. What are they? Is it worshiping false gods overtly? Is it sacrificing

59:45.560 --> 59:54.760
infants to molok? No. It's abstinence from marriage and it's abstaining from foods and making those

59:54.760 --> 59:59.400
commandments saying you must do this. Incidentally, that's going to be part of next week's episode

59:59.400 --> 01:00:03.800
where we talk about narcissism. That's part of what was being addressed there in this passage,

01:00:03.800 --> 01:00:12.280
was the already extant Gnostic cult that existed within Christianity against it. The Gnostic tendencies

01:00:12.280 --> 01:00:17.320
are one of the ways that from the very beginning, Satan was attacking the church from within.

01:00:17.880 --> 01:00:25.240
And what we see right now is these seemingly closing days of the church. We see the same

01:00:25.240 --> 01:00:33.640
Gnosticism roaring back. We see Galatians 3.28 quoted against creation, where God says,

01:00:33.640 --> 01:00:39.000
there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female,

01:00:39.000 --> 01:00:45.320
for all are one in Christ Jesus. That is an argument that is used by those who have devoted

01:00:45.320 --> 01:00:50.360
themselves to deceitful spirits as an attack on creation. They say, there's neither male nor

01:00:50.360 --> 01:00:55.720
female, there's no male and female. It's like the ands and the ors separate. We'll talk about that.

01:00:55.720 --> 01:00:59.880
After this arc, I think we're going to be doing an episode entirely on Galatius 3.28,

01:00:59.880 --> 01:01:05.080
because we've said before, it is the key that unlocks all of these attacks on creation and on

01:01:05.080 --> 01:01:10.520
the church. The fact that there are pastors today who are using that as a proof text to attack

01:01:11.320 --> 01:01:18.840
God's order, to attack headship of man over woman, to say that man was not created for woman,

01:01:18.840 --> 01:01:25.640
but woman was created for man. That's quoting scripture. Yet, if you say it on social media,

01:01:25.640 --> 01:01:33.400
you're going to get dogpiled. Why? Because it's against the culture. It's wrong. It is absolutely

01:01:33.400 --> 01:01:38.760
wrong. Is it wrong in Christian terms? No, it's quoting God. It can't be wrong in Christian terms.

01:01:38.760 --> 01:01:43.800
It is wrong in terms of the morality of this age. Yet, many of the people who will attack

01:01:43.800 --> 01:01:48.840
the sort of man who will say that in public are themselves Christians. They think that they're

01:01:48.840 --> 01:01:56.200
defending God when they attack scripture. The point in this episode is that when someone attacks

01:01:56.200 --> 01:02:03.080
scripture and says they're defending God, they're telling the truth. They're not telling you the

01:02:03.080 --> 01:02:09.240
truth about who their God is. Their God is Satan. Their God is not the triune God, but they are

01:02:09.240 --> 01:02:14.280
defending their God. See, the distinction we're trying to make here is when you take these things

01:02:14.280 --> 01:02:19.240
as doctrinal matters, as measuring them only against scripture and saying, well, this is more

01:02:19.240 --> 01:02:23.880
Christian or this is less Christian, you completely lose sight of the fact that these teachings are

01:02:23.880 --> 01:02:30.280
either from God or they're from demons. If Satan put this in someone's head and in his heart and

01:02:30.280 --> 01:02:36.760
on his lips, there's an immediate threat to the souls of everyone who hears it. From the garden

01:02:36.760 --> 01:02:42.200
to this day, we have all manner of false prophets, including at the head of our denominations,

01:02:42.920 --> 01:02:49.160
saying things like, slavery is the original sin of the United States. When we did the episodes

01:02:49.160 --> 01:02:54.760
devoted to slavery and racism and feminism, they were largely Bible studies, because again, those

01:02:54.760 --> 01:03:00.920
are religious matters. In both directions, Christianity says one thing about slavery and

01:03:01.000 --> 01:03:08.520
racism and religion, and the modern religion says the opposite thing. Today, when we have these

01:03:08.520 --> 01:03:15.240
conversations in public, Corey said, you can say these things and be canceled, doxxed, fired,

01:03:15.240 --> 01:03:21.720
unemployable forever. Why? Because you're bad? Because you're a neo-Nazi podcaster? No, because

01:03:21.720 --> 01:03:27.640
you said the same thing that God said, and that's all it takes. That is a moral calculus that is

01:03:27.640 --> 01:03:35.160
absolutely a religious decision. What it is not is Christian. Christianity doesn't do that.

01:03:35.160 --> 01:03:42.520
Satan's religion does that, and the reason that it's crucial to identify that it's Satan's religion

01:03:42.520 --> 01:03:48.600
is that it doesn't call itself Satanism. There's no pentagram on this stuff. There's no, usually,

01:03:48.600 --> 01:03:54.200
although hilariously in a lot of places, when you see anti-racism marches, you will frequently find

01:03:54.200 --> 01:04:00.760
pentagrams in Stars of Remfan in the crowd. It happens quite a bit, but it's not always there,

01:04:00.760 --> 01:04:05.160
and you also find it in Christian churches, where pastors will say the very same things.

01:04:05.160 --> 01:04:11.880
The men's like Magnus Hirschfeld said a century ago in his book on racism. They are preaching from

01:04:12.600 --> 01:04:19.560
Satan's gospel, and it's a true religion. It is absolutely a complete religion that calls itself

01:04:19.560 --> 01:04:25.720
Christianity. The genealogy of your morality, whatever it is, whatever specific moral tenet,

01:04:26.360 --> 01:04:32.200
if it's from Scripture, it's Christian. If it's not from Scripture, and yet it's still your morality,

01:04:32.200 --> 01:04:38.120
that is a false, competing, anti-Christian religion, and we all hold them simultaneously.

01:04:38.680 --> 01:04:43.960
Part of the sanctified Christian life is figuring this stuff out to realize I, in good conscience,

01:04:43.960 --> 01:04:50.040
believed this for 20, 30, 40 years, and then I realized because someone told me or because I

01:04:50.040 --> 01:04:56.440
studied that I was in error, that I had sinned. Is that a surprise? No. He who says he is without

01:04:56.440 --> 01:05:02.440
sinned to seize himself, and the truth is not in him. If you find out that you got something wrong

01:05:02.440 --> 01:05:07.400
and you've been sinning for most of your life, it should make you feel bad, but it shouldn't

01:05:07.400 --> 01:05:13.480
surprise you. It shouldn't surprise you that it's possible. It should certainly be a shock, and it

01:05:13.480 --> 01:05:18.280
should be alarming, but to realize that you got something wrong, particularly when you've been

01:05:18.280 --> 01:05:23.800
taught falsely. That's the most crucial thing about this, is that it's the pastors who bind

01:05:23.800 --> 01:05:30.680
people's consciences with these demonic lies from these deceitful spirits, that men who don't know

01:05:30.680 --> 01:05:35.080
any better are going to pair with them. In good conscience, they will say, that's a violation

01:05:35.080 --> 01:05:41.240
of my morality to be racist or to be anti-feminist. Corey, when he was falsely excommunicated,

01:05:41.240 --> 01:05:48.360
one of the charges was literally misogyny. Think about that. A Christian denomination

01:05:48.360 --> 01:05:55.480
excommunicates for misogyny. It's a new sin. They cited falsely the Ten Commandments.

01:05:55.480 --> 01:06:02.840
It is a complete fabrication. On one hand, that is not Christian doctrine. It's an error. It's

01:06:02.840 --> 01:06:07.800
not binding. It's complete falsehood, and it's a condemnation to hell of every man involved.

01:06:08.360 --> 01:06:13.160
On the other hand, it is their true confession. That's the crucial part of this, and that's why

01:06:13.160 --> 01:06:19.240
we're going to do the third episode on apostasy. These things that get people fired up are their

01:06:19.240 --> 01:06:25.000
true confession. Stone Choir is Corey and my true confession. This is the stuff that we think is the

01:06:25.000 --> 01:06:31.880
most important, because it's destroying the church. Now, we don't talk a lot specifically about the

01:06:31.880 --> 01:06:36.840
gospel, not because it's not important, and we refer to the gospel all the time. There are numerous

01:06:36.840 --> 01:06:41.080
people who have begun going to the church for the first time in their lives because of what they've

01:06:41.080 --> 01:06:45.960
heard on Stone Choir. It wasn't that we scared them about hell. It wasn't that we were so law-oriented.

01:06:46.520 --> 01:06:49.960
It was that they realized that God had died for them, because we talk about that all the time.

01:06:51.640 --> 01:06:55.800
The emphasis that we have is the same emphasis that you find in the New Testament.

01:06:55.800 --> 01:07:01.960
I've said before, if you read only their words in red, only Jesus' own recorded words,

01:07:02.520 --> 01:07:07.240
it's almost all law. There's a very little gospel in there. There's a whole lot of believe, obey,

01:07:07.240 --> 01:07:13.880
do. Is that because Jesus didn't preach well? Did he forget to say what was important? No.

01:07:14.440 --> 01:07:18.280
He told the people what they needed to hear, and what they needed to hear was repent.

01:07:18.920 --> 01:07:22.200
They didn't need to hear your hunky dory. They didn't need to hear you got everything figured

01:07:22.200 --> 01:07:26.280
out. You go, girl. They needed to hear what was going to send them to hell if they didn't stop.

01:07:26.840 --> 01:07:32.520
That is a crucial part of Christian preaching. To warn the specific listeners in whatever

01:07:32.520 --> 01:07:38.200
congregation or whatever context, here are your sins. That is not hateful. That is the opposite

01:07:38.200 --> 01:07:45.560
of hatred. If Cory and I hated any particular group, we would just let them go, ignore whatever

01:07:45.560 --> 01:07:50.120
errors they were going to make, and know that that was going to lead them closer to hell.

01:07:50.120 --> 01:07:55.320
Instead, we shout and point and warn and say, this over here, this is in danger in your soul.

01:07:55.320 --> 01:07:59.560
You need to stop. You have to put that in stark terms, because in a lot of cases,

01:07:59.560 --> 01:08:06.040
there's no time to negotiate. There's no time to explain this stuff. Your people are careening

01:08:06.040 --> 01:08:11.640
towards a cliff. If they don't make a 90-degree turn right away, they're going to go over the edge,

01:08:11.640 --> 01:08:17.320
and there's nothing that any man can do to save them. These questions of morality

01:08:18.120 --> 01:08:22.680
are crucial inside the Church because they're masquerading as Christian when they're simply

01:08:22.680 --> 01:08:29.480
not. The genealogy of where you got your morals will tell you what your God is. As Cory gave that

01:08:29.480 --> 01:08:34.120
example, there are plenty of other examples we could give, like the one I gave about some races

01:08:34.120 --> 01:08:40.600
are inherently more wicked than others. This is demonstrable. There are entire races, entire parts

01:08:40.600 --> 01:08:46.920
of certain continents that have no concept of some crimes, no concept whatsoever. We can't even believe

01:08:46.920 --> 01:08:53.080
it in the West, because in our race and our entire history as a culture, as a people, it's

01:08:53.080 --> 01:08:59.480
always been evil to do certain things. I'm not even going to name here, because we talked about,

01:08:59.480 --> 01:09:04.760
I mentioned earlier on, the knowledge of good and evil. A lot of parents listen to Stonequire

01:09:04.760 --> 01:09:10.440
with their kids, which is awesome. We try to not make too many episodes, things that parents can't

01:09:10.440 --> 01:09:14.680
listen to their kids. If you're a kid and you're listening now with your parents, when they say,

01:09:14.680 --> 01:09:19.240
you know what, this portion or this episode is not for you, they're not depriving you of

01:09:19.240 --> 01:09:23.720
something great. They're not holding out the good stuff. They're trying to protect you from

01:09:23.720 --> 01:09:31.160
something that is evil. There's knowledge that has terrible knowledge. What happened when Adam

01:09:31.160 --> 01:09:37.400
and Eve sinned is what we see so much in the world today, where people are robbed of their innocence.

01:09:38.040 --> 01:09:42.760
They were in a state of innocence in the garden. As a young child to a degree, you have a state of

01:09:42.760 --> 01:09:48.840
innocence in terms of knowledge of evil. Once you learn about certain things, you can never

01:09:48.840 --> 01:09:54.200
unknow them. There's no going back. You, for the rest of your life, will be burdened with things

01:09:54.200 --> 01:09:58.840
that you wish you could unlearn. Every time your parents try to protect you from something,

01:09:58.840 --> 01:10:03.400
or even as adults, this happens a lot, especially on the internet, where you're interacting with

01:10:03.400 --> 01:10:09.560
strangers. If someone has an innocent ignorance of something, there's a part of some of us that

01:10:09.560 --> 01:10:15.560
gets really excited and wants to rob them of it. That's evil. If someone is blissfully ignorant,

01:10:15.560 --> 01:10:20.360
if they're innocent of some evil, thank God that they've been spared, because you know something

01:10:20.360 --> 01:10:25.000
terrible and awful that they don't know. Give thanks that they've been spared that, and don't

01:10:25.000 --> 01:10:29.720
take it from them. Don't rob them. When kids are listening, your parents say, you know what,

01:10:29.720 --> 01:10:35.160
not this stuff, you can listen to the next episode. They're doing you one of the greatest

01:10:35.160 --> 01:10:40.840
favors anyone will ever do for you in your entire life, because certain knowledge that we have as

01:10:40.840 --> 01:10:46.600
adults can't be unlearned. There are things I know and things I've seen and things I've heard

01:10:46.600 --> 01:10:51.400
that I would dearly like to get out of my head, and I can't. When I die, God will take that stuff

01:10:51.400 --> 01:10:56.920
away, but until then, I'm stuck with it. Once you learn things, when you get older, you're stuck

01:10:56.920 --> 01:11:03.480
with them. You can't get rid of them. The knowledge of evil is a burden. It's a bad, terrible, harmful

01:11:03.480 --> 01:11:10.920
thing. Robbing of innocence is something that it's almost normal now. There used to be laws

01:11:10.920 --> 01:11:17.000
against it, but when the culture ceased to be a Christian culture, the laws ceased to be Christian

01:11:17.000 --> 01:11:23.480
laws. Suddenly, that, which was immoral and wicked, was not only removed from the law,

01:11:23.480 --> 01:11:30.280
but became promoted everywhere you look. Corey's talking about media. You should cancel Netflix

01:11:30.280 --> 01:11:36.520
right now. You should pause the podcast and cancel Netflix, because you're paying for absolutely

01:11:36.520 --> 01:11:42.360
wicked things. Cartoons, it doesn't matter. Everything that they produce is suffused with

01:11:42.360 --> 01:11:48.120
satanic agendas, and they're not remotely subtle about it. If you can't see it, you're in dire

01:11:48.120 --> 01:11:54.840
spiritual state, because it is wildly overt. There's nothing about it that's hidden. This stuff is

01:11:54.840 --> 01:12:00.120
so out in the open now, because the culture has shifted so far that it's Satan's culture

01:12:00.680 --> 01:12:05.080
right out in the open. Christians are like, that's normal. That's fine. Why wouldn't I tell

01:12:05.080 --> 01:12:10.280
someone something, some horrible, innocence-robbing thing that they can never get back? Why wouldn't

01:12:10.280 --> 01:12:15.560
I? It's knowledge. Isn't all knowledge neutral? No. Some things are terrible and shouldn't exist.

01:12:15.560 --> 01:12:22.840
Some knowledge should be destroyed. That's a Christian position. When the sorcerers brought

01:12:22.840 --> 01:12:28.680
together all of their sorcery material and acts and burned it, and it was worth 50,000

01:12:28.680 --> 01:12:35.240
whatever's of silver, that was a tremendous amount of wealth that was incinerated, because it was

01:12:35.240 --> 01:12:40.360
evil knowledge. They acknowledged that as part of their repentance, as part of turning away from

01:12:40.360 --> 01:12:45.480
their wickedness, they had to destroy the evil that they had done in the past. That should be

01:12:45.480 --> 01:12:50.680
the case with us. When we discover that some part of our morality turns out not to be Christian

01:12:50.680 --> 01:12:57.800
morality, you've got to torch it. That's a good thing to do. The big struggle is getting from,

01:12:57.800 --> 01:13:03.960
I thought I was fine. Actually, this is crap. I need to torch it. That process, it hurts.

01:13:03.960 --> 01:13:09.000
It's painful. It's why some of these episodes are downers, because we're not free from sin.

01:13:09.000 --> 01:13:15.560
We do some bad stuff and it piles up. Getting to the other side is the whole point of the Christian

01:13:15.560 --> 01:13:25.880
life. The Old Testament reading for yesterday was from Ezekiel 3, and it brought to mind a

01:13:26.920 --> 01:13:33.320
section of the same book, Ezekiel, that we have had on the Stone Choir website from day one,

01:13:34.120 --> 01:13:39.320
and that is from Ezekiel 33. I won't read the whole thing. You can go read it if you're so inclined.

01:13:39.400 --> 01:13:47.960
That's Ezekiel 33 verses one through nine. The point of the section is that

01:13:49.880 --> 01:13:54.600
I'm going to extrapolate out the point, not the immediate point God is making to Ezekiel,

01:13:54.600 --> 01:13:58.760
to whom he is speaking in the passage, but the point of the passage for Christians when you

01:13:58.760 --> 01:14:06.200
read this, is that if you have been given the ability to warn someone about some evil that

01:14:06.200 --> 01:14:15.800
he is doing, and you do not warn him, you have made that evil your own. You have committed sin in

01:14:15.800 --> 01:14:22.360
not warning that man, because God having given you the ability to warn him and you having failed to

01:14:22.360 --> 01:14:29.640
exercise that duty using the abilities given you by God, you have sinned through inaction.

01:14:30.120 --> 01:14:37.560
When we started the podcast, we knew that is exactly what we were doing. Now we put it off for a

01:14:37.560 --> 01:14:43.720
while for various reasons, but we knew that the reason we had to do this, that it was not an option

01:14:43.720 --> 01:14:49.720
for us. This was not something that we could pick up or set down or do or not do. We were required

01:14:49.720 --> 01:14:56.760
to do it. That is our state of mind. That is our opinion, our firm belief with regard to the podcast.

01:14:57.480 --> 01:15:03.080
God has given us the ability to understand this material and to teach this material, and that

01:15:03.080 --> 01:15:08.120
is what we are doing on this podcast. This is teaching, and as we said in an early episode,

01:15:08.120 --> 01:15:13.720
we recognize that does subject us to the stricter judgment. We've elected that in full knowledge,

01:15:15.160 --> 01:15:21.800
but what we are doing is warning anyone who will listen about the evils that we see,

01:15:22.760 --> 01:15:30.200
about the evils in our culture, about all of these wicked things that to us are obvious,

01:15:31.080 --> 01:15:35.880
are incredibly obvious, are out in the open, that some do not see.

01:15:38.360 --> 01:15:44.760
We're warning men of traps, of which they may not be aware. We know the trap is there. We are

01:15:44.760 --> 01:15:51.480
telling you do not step on it. That is why we're doing this, and it is a duty for Christian men

01:15:51.480 --> 01:15:57.560
again who have been given the ability to do so from God. This is clear in many parts of Scripture,

01:15:58.120 --> 01:16:03.160
particularly clear in the passage we chose from Ezekiel, Ezekiel 33 again.

01:16:05.720 --> 01:16:11.560
But I actually want to speak for a moment specifically to teachers and pastors. Now,

01:16:11.560 --> 01:16:17.800
this is applicable to all Christians, of course, because it is dealing with one of the commandments,

01:16:17.880 --> 01:16:23.320
and the commandments, of course, are applicable to all Christians, to all persons, actually,

01:16:23.320 --> 01:16:28.760
because whether or not you're Christian, God's will and God's law still holds, and you will be

01:16:28.760 --> 01:16:36.760
judged by it. But woe spoke of the second commandment, thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God

01:16:36.760 --> 01:16:44.440
in vain. And this brought to mind a particular paragraph from the large catechism.

01:16:45.080 --> 01:16:52.760
Luther says of this commandment, the greatest abuse occurs in spiritual matters which pertain

01:16:52.760 --> 01:16:59.800
to the conscience when false preachers rise up and offer their lying vanities as God's word.

01:17:01.400 --> 01:17:05.640
And of course, this applies to teachers as well, not just pastors.

01:17:06.040 --> 01:17:14.520
The worst thing you can do when it comes to violations, transgressions of the second commandment

01:17:16.200 --> 01:17:21.880
is to stand up and offer that which is false as God's word.

01:17:23.640 --> 01:17:31.240
To lie in God's name and say that God said you must do this is the most wicked thing you can do

01:17:31.960 --> 01:17:39.080
with regard to this commandment. And in fact, doing so inevitably entails violating the first

01:17:39.080 --> 01:17:44.440
commandment as well, because you have shown that you have this other God, and you are actually

01:17:44.440 --> 01:17:50.760
speaking on his behalf, you are simply attempting to deceive using the name of the Lord God to dress

01:17:50.760 --> 01:18:00.280
up your lies. Some will think that this is uncommon, that this is unusual, that this is

01:18:00.280 --> 01:18:07.080
something that would be obvious. For instance, the wicked Bible, if a pastor were to stand up

01:18:07.080 --> 01:18:12.440
and quote that and say thou shalt commit adultery, that would most certainly be wicked, that would

01:18:12.440 --> 01:18:16.680
be a violation of the second commandment, that would be lying and deceiving in God's name,

01:18:16.680 --> 01:18:23.400
and it would be obvious we would all catch that, I would hope. But this happens constantly,

01:18:24.200 --> 01:18:31.640
particularly with teachers, and even more particularly with pastors. Because if you are

01:18:31.640 --> 01:18:39.640
a pastor, and you stand up and say that this thing, racism, sexism, whatever it happens to be,

01:18:39.640 --> 01:18:47.320
this modern sin, if you say that is contrary to God's word, you are lying in God's name

01:18:47.400 --> 01:18:55.400
about the things of God. And worse as a pastor, you are doing it while standing in God's place,

01:18:56.280 --> 01:19:00.440
because that is the authority, that is the position that has been given you by God.

01:19:01.000 --> 01:19:06.760
You are standing up there in his stead and lying in his name to his sheep.

01:19:08.280 --> 01:19:12.040
Now we'll get into apostasy in the third episode in this series,

01:19:12.280 --> 01:19:18.440
but I can certainly say now that I would not want to be in your shoes on judgment day

01:19:19.000 --> 01:19:24.280
if that is what you have spent your life doing. And so if you're listening to this podcast

01:19:24.840 --> 01:19:31.800
and you find that that applies to you, you need to repent and reconsider some things.

01:19:32.760 --> 01:19:36.360
Now that may be somewhat unlikely for the audience of this podcast,

01:19:37.160 --> 01:19:41.080
although perhaps this is where you started listening and perhaps it does apply to you.

01:19:42.040 --> 01:19:47.320
But again, that is the worst violation of the Second Commandment possible,

01:19:48.040 --> 01:19:55.080
is to lie in God's name while standing in his place about his things to his sheep.

01:19:58.200 --> 01:20:01.320
Such men are anti-Christ. They are false prophets,

01:20:01.960 --> 01:20:05.080
including many men in our own church, some of whom are listening right now.

01:20:05.720 --> 01:20:08.840
We know their names, we know what they're up to. The answer to God.

01:20:09.560 --> 01:20:12.760
But this sort of wickedness is, it's common today,

01:20:13.880 --> 01:20:19.160
and it's been common since the very beginning. Between now and a couple of weeks from now,

01:20:19.160 --> 01:20:25.880
I would encourage all of you to read Revelation 2 and 3. These are chapters that include the seven

01:20:25.880 --> 01:20:33.560
epistles that Jesus transcribed to John from heaven to the seven churches. And they're very

01:20:33.640 --> 01:20:39.640
interesting because they make clear many of the principles that we outline in terms of

01:20:40.760 --> 01:20:45.000
different churches having different problems. Different individual Christians have different

01:20:45.000 --> 01:20:49.160
problems, different pastors have different problems, different congregations have different

01:20:49.160 --> 01:20:54.280
problems, and groups of congregations, which today we call denominations, all have their own

01:20:54.280 --> 01:21:01.560
unique sets of issues. When you read the seven letters from Christ to the churches, what you find

01:21:01.560 --> 01:21:07.400
is that they're addressed in very different terms. When you read the letter to Smyrna,

01:21:07.400 --> 01:21:10.520
they're in good shape. God doesn't really have much criticism of them.

01:21:11.400 --> 01:21:17.080
Pergamum has a few faults, but for the most part they're pretty good. When Christ writes to the

01:21:17.080 --> 01:21:23.160
church at Sardis, it's dire. Listen to what Christ writes to Sardis. I know your works,

01:21:23.160 --> 01:21:27.880
you have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up and strengthen what remains and

01:21:27.880 --> 01:21:32.920
is about to die for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember then

01:21:32.920 --> 01:21:38.120
what you received and heard. Keep it in repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief

01:21:38.120 --> 01:21:44.760
and you will not know at whatever I will come against you. You have still a few names in Sardis,

01:21:44.760 --> 01:21:50.040
people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white for they are worthy.

01:21:51.240 --> 01:21:55.400
Now he says what remains and is about to die, he's talking about damnation,

01:21:55.400 --> 01:22:00.840
and he's addressing it to a church. So seven churches, some of them are okay,

01:22:00.840 --> 01:22:06.120
some are kind of shaky. Church at Sardis, he's saying most of you are going to hell

01:22:06.120 --> 01:22:10.680
unless you repent right now. That's in the church. That's people who all called themselves

01:22:10.680 --> 01:22:16.200
Christians. They were doing the stuff. They were showing up. You know, all the practices,

01:22:16.200 --> 01:22:21.480
they confess God. He said, I look at your works and I do not see Christians,

01:22:21.480 --> 01:22:28.040
because the works are an outpouring of the heart of the believer or the unbeliever. You will always

01:22:28.040 --> 01:22:36.120
confess with your actions and with your energy what your true God is. If your true God is the

01:22:36.120 --> 01:22:40.120
true God, then your actions and your words are going to be in accord with Scripture. You're

01:22:40.120 --> 01:22:44.200
going to do the stuff that God says to do and you're not going to do the stuff that he says not to do.

01:22:45.160 --> 01:22:51.880
We are judged by our works in terms of them being an example of our belief. Now, no one

01:22:51.880 --> 01:22:57.000
can possibly keep God's word perfectly. Scripture is clear about that. We cannot possibly save

01:22:57.000 --> 01:23:04.680
ourselves. Our works are filthy rags before God and they are only washed white by Christ's sacrifice.

01:23:05.800 --> 01:23:11.640
Nevertheless, there are things that are endemic to the Christian life that will be absent necessarily

01:23:11.720 --> 01:23:16.280
from the life of an unbeliever. That's what God is talking about. He's looking at him and saying,

01:23:16.280 --> 01:23:21.240
basically, you're going through the motions, but you're not saved. You're going to be damned if you

01:23:21.240 --> 01:23:27.000
do not repent. This happens in the rest of the New Testament, too. It's what the third episode is

01:23:27.000 --> 01:23:31.560
going to be about. God is calling Christians to repent, to turn away from their wickedness

01:23:32.120 --> 01:23:38.040
inside the church. How can you be wicked inside the church by having a God other than God,

01:23:38.040 --> 01:23:43.640
by having a morality other than that, which is from God? See, their errors weren't simply doctrinal.

01:23:43.640 --> 01:23:49.240
When you go back to 1 Timothy 4 and he's talking about abstaining from marriage and certain foods,

01:23:49.240 --> 01:23:54.440
are those doctrines? In some cases, they become doctrines, but sometimes it's like, well,

01:23:54.440 --> 01:23:58.920
don't do that. We're just going to do this other thing instead. It's not sold necessarily as a

01:23:58.920 --> 01:24:03.720
big ticket. Here's a top line belief of this religion. It's just, no, don't do that.

01:24:04.440 --> 01:24:09.560
God says that's a teaching of demons. God says that the liars with seared consciences

01:24:09.560 --> 01:24:16.520
who bring those things from false spirits are damned inside the church. Pagans from outside

01:24:16.520 --> 01:24:22.360
the church usually aren't coming into our churches and lying, although you have men like Ben Shapiro

01:24:22.360 --> 01:24:28.840
and James Lindsay, who are now speaking alongside pastors, talking to us about the body of Christ

01:24:28.840 --> 01:24:33.960
in the public square. It's inconceivable to me that these things would happen, and yet

01:24:33.960 --> 01:24:40.280
men like Cory and myself are seen as worse than. We're certainly not free from sin,

01:24:40.280 --> 01:24:47.560
but do we sin by telling people to God and go to church? No. We sin against the world religion

01:24:47.560 --> 01:24:53.080
by condemning the Ben Shapiro's and the James Lindsay's because they're wicked, evil men who

01:24:53.080 --> 01:24:58.360
have only evil in their hearts and the fact that some of what they say is able to sneak into the

01:24:58.360 --> 01:25:03.080
church is precisely the threat, and the fact that there are pastors that can't discern that

01:25:03.080 --> 01:25:08.760
is a tremendous threat. That's intolerable. It's utterly intolerable for there would be men

01:25:08.760 --> 01:25:13.800
in positions of authority in our churches who do not have the spiritual discernment to see that

01:25:13.800 --> 01:25:19.400
they are inviting wolves inside the sheepfold because the sheep don't know any better. Most

01:25:19.400 --> 01:25:25.480
people are not equipped to discern these things reliably. The best you can do is stick to what

01:25:25.480 --> 01:25:30.440
you've been taught and hope that your teacher was good. When you're given a false morality,

01:25:30.440 --> 01:25:35.960
when you're given a Ben Shapiro morality or James Lindsay morality, when you're told that the

01:25:35.960 --> 01:25:42.120
Constitution and John Locke are better sources of morality than some of the old teachings,

01:25:42.120 --> 01:25:46.360
we've improved on that stuff in the last couple hundred years. Let's use the new stuff because

01:25:46.360 --> 01:25:53.640
it's even better. That is the morality as a religion. It's an absolute religion with a God

01:25:54.600 --> 01:26:02.040
pantheon of beliefs. It's just not Christian. When an antichrist speaks in the stead of God

01:26:02.040 --> 01:26:07.960
from the pulpit or wherever he's teaching, podcasters can do the same sort of damage,

01:26:07.960 --> 01:26:14.280
frankly more in some cases. Our audience is hundreds of times bigger than almost all congregations.

01:26:15.080 --> 01:26:20.360
That bears weight. We take that seriously. On the other hand, if we were saying nothing,

01:26:20.360 --> 01:26:26.920
we would also stand condemned for saying nothing. The only way we can avoid condemnation is to speak

01:26:26.920 --> 01:26:33.960
and to speak faithfully. We do our very best to do that every week. The morality of the world

01:26:33.960 --> 01:26:39.320
is coming into the church by the back door. It's not coming in through the front. It's not

01:26:39.880 --> 01:26:46.280
saying we're going to just burn up this Bible and replace it because it's not going to work

01:26:46.280 --> 01:26:52.200
in some denominations. In others, it has worked. It has happened. It has worked. Most of Methodism,

01:26:52.200 --> 01:26:59.960
Elka, a lot of denominations are just absolutely openly apostate. They freely act that way,

01:26:59.960 --> 01:27:05.160
and yet they still call themselves Christians. We smugly from the conservative denominations

01:27:05.160 --> 01:27:11.000
look at them and say, thank God I'm not like that tax collector. The problem is that we're an even

01:27:11.000 --> 01:27:17.160
worse jeopardy than they are in terms of falling for things because we still think that we're holding

01:27:17.160 --> 01:27:22.840
to what Christianity teaches and what the Bible says when in reality our morality is every bit

01:27:22.840 --> 01:27:27.080
as wicked as theirs because we're getting it from the same source, maybe different parts of it.

01:27:27.640 --> 01:27:35.400
I'll tell you this. There are many pastors whose morality is indistinguishable from the terms of

01:27:35.400 --> 01:27:44.200
service of Facebook or ex formerly Twitter. If your morality is entirely compatible with the TOS

01:27:44.200 --> 01:27:50.840
for a social media site, you are going to hell because that is the world religion encapsulated.

01:27:50.840 --> 01:27:56.680
It's very positive. It's very friendly. It's very respectful. All sorts of bad things are off the

01:27:56.680 --> 01:28:04.040
menu that you can't do or say. What they protect is evil. They prevent you from naming wicked things,

01:28:04.040 --> 01:28:11.000
from saying things that are true. In fact, on X, you will be insta-banned if you quote Revelation

01:28:11.000 --> 01:28:17.400
2.9 or Revelation 3.9 because it calls the Jews the synagogue of Satan. Using that term, using

01:28:17.400 --> 01:28:24.200
synagogue of Satan will get your account instillocked. They won't even let that be posted. Quoting God

01:28:24.200 --> 01:28:30.600
will get you banned because calling Jews the synagogue of Satan is a moral statement. It is

01:28:30.680 --> 01:28:36.040
a Christian statement. It is at odds with the morality of the world that says that's racist,

01:28:36.040 --> 01:28:42.120
that's anti-Semitic. You can't do that and be a good person. According to the world religion,

01:28:42.120 --> 01:28:47.560
that's absolutely true. That is a confession of their religion. What it is not a confession of is

01:28:47.560 --> 01:28:53.480
the true God because the true God literally said that. Those are red-letter words too. That is Jesus

01:28:53.480 --> 01:28:58.440
from heaven proclaiming the Jews are the synagogue of Satan as he said before that they are the

01:28:58.440 --> 01:29:04.200
children of their father the devil. That is what God said about those people, about that race of

01:29:04.200 --> 01:29:11.320
people. We did four-part episode dealing with all the details of that. If you say that, you get banned.

01:29:12.360 --> 01:29:18.040
Most pastors will have exactly the same response as Elon Musk. They will ban you for saying what

01:29:18.040 --> 01:29:24.520
God says. There's a whole lot of the Bible that is off limits in our churches. What are the parts?

01:29:24.520 --> 01:29:28.360
They're things about when the Jews do something bad. They're things about when there are differences

01:29:28.360 --> 01:29:34.040
between men and women. They're things about sexual sins that differentiate from one and another

01:29:34.040 --> 01:29:39.480
to say that Sodom and Gomorrah was worse than the neighboring sent towns that were not incinerated.

01:29:39.480 --> 01:29:45.560
These are all moral propositions that are scriptural propositions that are at odds with the morality

01:29:45.560 --> 01:29:51.640
of the world religion. All of this is about distinguishing where is my morality from.

01:29:51.640 --> 01:29:55.160
If you get upset when someone says that the Jews are the synagogue of Satan,

01:29:55.720 --> 01:30:04.520
you are angry at God Almighty. Your visceral moral repugnance at those words is hatred of God.

01:30:04.520 --> 01:30:09.640
You're violating the first and second commandments. You are serving Satan when you have that response.

01:30:10.200 --> 01:30:14.680
Elon Musk served Satan when he bans people for saying that. It doesn't matter if he knows or

01:30:14.680 --> 01:30:21.240
not, he is. It's baked right into the system. The machinery literally enforces it. The machinery

01:30:21.240 --> 01:30:28.200
in our churches enforces it too. There has been a massive manhunt across numerous denominations

01:30:28.200 --> 01:30:34.760
in the past year specifically trying to root out racists and anti-Semites because you can deny

01:30:34.760 --> 01:30:41.160
the Trinity. You can deny the sacraments. You can deny pretty much anything in a Christian faith.

01:30:41.160 --> 01:30:47.640
You cannot deny the tenets of the world religion. The episodes we've named in the past and some

01:30:47.640 --> 01:30:52.920
of the others specifically go after the world religion, but we want to make clear in this episode

01:30:52.920 --> 01:31:00.120
that moral compass is pointed to hell. Many of us by bits and pieces have our own moral compass

01:31:00.120 --> 01:31:06.920
that when it comes to those issues, we lose our point towards God and it swings. It swings to

01:31:06.920 --> 01:31:11.640
hell and says, nope, I'm going to believe this other religion just for this one thing. I'll swing

01:31:11.640 --> 01:31:16.680
right back. It comes to going to church when it comes to saying the creeds or whatever your profession

01:31:16.680 --> 01:31:23.640
is. Sure, you got that down. When it comes to racism, no, no, no. This is my religion too.

01:31:24.600 --> 01:31:29.240
If it were Christianity, that would be good. That's why the episode that we did on that was

01:31:29.240 --> 01:31:35.800
largely a Bible study because the truth is the opposite. It is a worldly modern invention that

01:31:35.800 --> 01:31:41.080
has an attack on Christianity and that is why it's so important on Twitter and Facebook and in our

01:31:41.080 --> 01:31:49.800
pulpits. Christianity itself is under attack from without, hand within. As we've said many times

01:31:49.800 --> 01:31:56.440
before, you are in your life, in your actions, in your beliefs, trending Godward or Hellward.

01:31:56.440 --> 01:32:03.640
Those are the only two options. And Satan, for his part, does not particularly care

01:32:05.080 --> 01:32:11.000
when it comes to the things about which you are wrong. Yes, he would prefer that you were a truly

01:32:11.080 --> 01:32:18.200
awful person and that you led many others to hell with you. But he's fine with it if, when presented

01:32:18.200 --> 01:32:27.080
with two options, you pick the one that leads you toward him. Small thing, big thing, medium-sized

01:32:27.080 --> 01:32:33.640
thing, doesn't matter. As long as you are doing the thing that God does not want you to do,

01:32:34.360 --> 01:32:42.040
Satan is happy. And so many of these things may seem small in the grand scheme of things they

01:32:42.040 --> 01:32:46.840
actually are not because these are many of the things that have destroyed our culture, that

01:32:46.840 --> 01:32:54.040
have destroyed Christendom, that are dragging all of us, Hellward, along with our people and our

01:32:54.040 --> 01:33:02.040
culture, the whole world in fact, but they may seem small in and of themselves. When you decide to

01:33:02.040 --> 01:33:07.640
profess one of the tenets of the world religion, instead of pushing back against it and saying

01:33:07.640 --> 01:33:13.160
what Scripture says, well that seems small. Particularly if it seems like it's a peripheral

01:33:13.160 --> 01:33:21.720
or a tangential issue, a minor issue, but it's not. Because again, the only goal of Satan is to

01:33:21.720 --> 01:33:26.600
get you to do the thing that God does not want you to do and not to do the thing that God wants

01:33:26.600 --> 01:33:36.520
you to do. Doesn't ultimately matter what it is. He just wants you to rebel. That's the point.

01:33:36.520 --> 01:33:42.680
That's the whole point. It is whether you are obedient to God or rebelling against God.

01:33:43.720 --> 01:33:51.720
Now I'm not saying that every single choice is binary, Hellward or Heavenward. That's not the

01:33:51.720 --> 01:33:58.440
point. There are things that are legitimately audiophora. There are things in a grand sense of

01:33:58.440 --> 01:34:04.040
the term. There are things that it doesn't matter which you pick. If you pick chocolate or vanilla

01:34:04.040 --> 01:34:10.520
ice cream for dessert, that's not moving you closer or further away from God. That's not how that

01:34:10.520 --> 01:34:17.080
works. When it comes to matters of morality, when it comes to matters of religion, when it comes to

01:34:17.080 --> 01:34:23.160
matters of cult, when it comes to whether you affirm the words of Scripture or deny the words of

01:34:23.160 --> 01:34:30.680
Scripture, these are the things where it matters. And as a Christian, and this may be a hard teaching,

01:34:30.680 --> 01:34:37.240
but it is the teaching of Scripture, as a Christian, you are required to affirm the words of Scripture

01:34:37.800 --> 01:34:41.480
every time and that is regardless of consequences.

01:34:44.200 --> 01:34:52.280
In our modern world, that seems like an impossible task. That seems like something that is insane

01:34:52.280 --> 01:34:59.320
to ask. Because as Woe mentioned, we live in a world where you can be fired from your job. You

01:34:59.320 --> 01:35:06.520
can essentially be unpersoned if you simply quote Scripture. If you repeat the words of God after

01:35:06.520 --> 01:35:13.640
Him, there are those out there who will attempt to destroy you. But that should tell you something.

01:35:15.080 --> 01:35:21.000
They're not attempting to destroy you because you said something false. If you just said something

01:35:21.000 --> 01:35:26.040
false, they wouldn't care. If you believe in a different false God from their false God,

01:35:26.040 --> 01:35:33.160
chances are they will leave you alone. If you worship Bolog, they don't care. If you worship

01:35:33.320 --> 01:35:41.880
Baal, they don't care. If you worship money, they don't care. Mammon, if you worship capitalism,

01:35:41.880 --> 01:35:45.960
they don't care. Pick your false God. Now, of course, there are some who are going to attack

01:35:45.960 --> 01:35:49.880
you for capitalism, but that's just because they don't realize that they're worshiping the other

01:35:49.880 --> 01:35:57.240
side of the same coin as we went over in our episode on capitalism. But they care a great deal

01:35:58.200 --> 01:36:01.800
when you say the things of God, and that's because those are true.

01:36:04.360 --> 01:36:09.960
And that is why you see those who are the Acolytes, who are the priests or the high priests of the

01:36:09.960 --> 01:36:16.920
world religion. It's why you see them respond so violently, so vehemently, when you say things

01:36:17.640 --> 01:36:21.720
that are just quotes from Scripture because they go against the world religion

01:36:21.720 --> 01:36:28.280
and demons cannot bear to hear the word of God. That is one of the things we see

01:36:29.240 --> 01:36:33.400
throughout the book of Concord, but particularly in some of the sections from Luther himself,

01:36:34.200 --> 01:36:38.600
where he says that one of the reasons we should have the word of God in our hearts,

01:36:38.600 --> 01:36:44.600
on our lips, in our mouths, why we should speak, read, discuss the word of God as Scripture,

01:36:44.680 --> 01:36:51.720
of course instructs us to do, is because Satan cannot bear to hear it. It drives him away.

01:36:52.920 --> 01:36:58.680
One of the ways that you can drive Satan out of your life is to spend time in the things of God,

01:36:58.680 --> 01:37:02.360
to spend time in God's word. That's one of the ways that you are sanctified.

01:37:03.960 --> 01:37:08.200
And so doing this is one of the ways you protect yourself as a Christian, and it is why

01:37:09.160 --> 01:37:13.640
those who are not of the church, those who are not of Christ, those who are not of God,

01:37:13.640 --> 01:37:20.920
cannot stand to hear these things because it enrages their master. And so it enrages them.

01:37:22.360 --> 01:37:29.800
But again, as a Christian, if you have the option to speak the word of God or to deny it,

01:37:30.520 --> 01:37:35.800
as a Christian, you do not have a choice. You are required to speak the word of God.

01:37:36.520 --> 01:37:40.680
Again, I will give the same caveat that I have given elsewhere when this issue has arisen.

01:37:41.640 --> 01:37:46.360
This does not mean be a fool. Now, in a certain sense, perhaps it does.

01:37:47.640 --> 01:37:54.600
But you are still instructed to be wise. The word there is actually shades into crafty even,

01:37:54.600 --> 01:37:58.760
because it's the same description used of the serpent. Wise is a serpent.

01:38:00.600 --> 01:38:06.520
But that does not permit you to lie. We are not Muslims. We are not permitted to lie about our

01:38:06.520 --> 01:38:12.600
faith in order to protect ourselves. There may be very real cost associated with speaking the

01:38:12.600 --> 01:38:18.920
things of God, being bold and truthful. But that is what we are called to do. Because again,

01:38:18.920 --> 01:38:24.520
Satan just wants you to rebel. He wants you to deny whatever it happens to be, small or large.

01:38:25.720 --> 01:38:32.600
His goal is to get you to deny Christ, to deny God's word. It's the camel's nose under the

01:38:32.680 --> 01:38:36.760
tent flap. Before you know it, you'll have the entire camel in the tent, and there'll be no more

01:38:36.760 --> 01:38:47.240
tent. It's just you and the camel. That is Satan's goal. And so, yes, obviously, we've had a lot of

01:38:47.240 --> 01:38:55.960
law in this episode. But Christians still need to hear God's law. The world most certainly needs

01:38:55.960 --> 01:39:01.640
to hear God's law. This is one of the things that we have, not we specifically, but Christians in

01:39:01.640 --> 01:39:06.680
general have gotten wrong in the last couple decades, or really more than that, the last half

01:39:06.680 --> 01:39:15.560
century, perhaps. The law has fallen by the wayside. But the gospel isn't good news if the law doesn't

01:39:15.560 --> 01:39:22.600
exist. Because if there's no law, then I don't need a savior. Because if there's no law, I haven't

01:39:22.600 --> 01:39:29.000
transgressed. There must be a law that you have transgressed for the gospel to be good news. The

01:39:29.000 --> 01:39:35.480
gospel is good news because you're a sinner. If you were not a sinner, the gospel would just be news.

01:39:35.480 --> 01:39:41.160
It wouldn't be good news because it wouldn't apply to you. It applies to you. It applies to the world

01:39:41.960 --> 01:39:49.240
because we are sinners. Because you are a sinner, the gospel is good news. And so, we need to hear

01:39:49.240 --> 01:39:55.080
the law. As Christians, we need to be reminded of the law. And not only does the law remind us of

01:39:55.160 --> 01:40:01.480
what we should do, what we should have done, what we have failed to do, but it guides us. We forget

01:40:01.480 --> 01:40:07.320
that there are three uses of the law. And one of the uses of the law is to guide us in the Christian

01:40:07.320 --> 01:40:13.400
life. And it should not just be individually. It should also help to guide our societies.

01:40:14.440 --> 01:40:20.360
God's law should be the basis of our positive law. For those who are unfamiliar with the terms,

01:40:21.320 --> 01:40:25.320
moral law would be God's law. The Ten Commandments are moral law. That is the law that flows from

01:40:25.320 --> 01:40:30.760
God's nature. Positive law simply means laws that are enacted by men. That's what positive

01:40:30.760 --> 01:40:37.240
means in this sense. And so, by that, I mean our criminal laws primarily. Civil laws are less of a

01:40:37.240 --> 01:40:43.480
matter for the moral law. They should be compliant with the moral law. But the amount that you set

01:40:43.480 --> 01:40:53.320
for a parking fine is only tangentially an issue of the moral law. Making homicide illegal is a

01:40:53.320 --> 01:40:58.280
moral law matter. Making adultery illegal, which it still should be. It is in the military court

01:40:58.280 --> 01:41:03.560
of justice, just not in the civil courts anymore. Adultery should be illegal in our societies.

01:41:04.120 --> 01:41:10.120
As Christians, we should want that to be part of our laws. Again, we want to have a Christian

01:41:10.200 --> 01:41:18.120
society because those are the guardrails. Those help you to remain a Christian, not to stray.

01:41:19.160 --> 01:41:27.800
Sheepfolds, sheep pens, have fences. Because without them, the sheep wander. A good shepherd

01:41:27.800 --> 01:41:34.840
will have fences. And a prince, a proper ruler, a godly king is supposed to be a good shepherd.

01:41:34.920 --> 01:41:38.760
He will place fences. He will maintain the fences that have been placed

01:41:39.480 --> 01:41:45.240
in order to preserve the flock that is entrusted to his care. And that is the duty of a godly prince

01:41:45.240 --> 01:41:52.040
no less, although in a different way, from a pastor or a teacher. Both are under shepherds.

01:41:52.600 --> 01:41:56.680
Both will one day answer to the good shepherd for what they did or did not do

01:41:57.320 --> 01:42:01.800
with regard to those sheep entrusted to their care by the good shepherd.

01:42:02.760 --> 01:42:07.560
The one thing that I want to leave everyone with in this episode beyond what Cory just said,

01:42:07.560 --> 01:42:13.960
which is very important, is the idea of using what we've discussed here today

01:42:14.840 --> 01:42:21.560
as a tool for evaluating whatever you hear others talking about. When you hear someone making a

01:42:21.560 --> 01:42:28.360
moral claim, someone saying, this is right and this is wrong, your first instinct should be,

01:42:28.360 --> 01:42:32.840
okay, where did you get that? And the trick is that Christians are always going to say,

01:42:32.840 --> 01:42:38.040
why got it from God? The response is, okay, show me. And they're usually going to have

01:42:38.040 --> 01:42:43.560
garbage proof texts. Because what they won't be able to do with many of these new

01:42:44.680 --> 01:42:50.120
moral issues that are invented in the last couple of centuries, they won't be able to

01:42:50.120 --> 01:42:56.120
point to the historic Christian belief. Because these things are a departure from it. And so

01:42:57.080 --> 01:42:59.960
it's not simply a question of the Christian saying, well,

01:43:01.080 --> 01:43:05.000
show me where your morality came from. And then they show you a Bible or say, okay, well,

01:43:05.000 --> 01:43:09.880
it's in the Bible. I guess that's fine. That is a superficial and useless application of what

01:43:09.880 --> 01:43:17.800
we're trying to teach here. The point is that if Christianity is true, then is eternal. Because

01:43:17.800 --> 01:43:23.640
God is true and God is eternal. God's will is eternal. His will does not change. Christianity

01:43:23.720 --> 01:43:30.280
doesn't change. Right and wrong doesn't change. So when someone says that used to be right,

01:43:30.280 --> 01:43:36.200
but now it's wrong, that person is from Satan, period. That's all you need to know.

01:43:36.200 --> 01:43:41.800
That's the genealogy of that idea. If they come to you and say, well, sure, 200 years ago,

01:43:41.800 --> 01:43:48.120
no one knew that it was bad, but today we know it's bad. That person is from hell. Even if it's

01:43:48.120 --> 01:43:53.800
a pastor, even if they're a big expert in theology, if they tell you about a new sin,

01:43:53.800 --> 01:44:01.480
they're lying. And you should apply this first to us, to everything Cory and I say on this podcast.

01:44:01.480 --> 01:44:06.760
Are we coming up with new sins? Or are we saying what Scripture says and what the

01:44:06.760 --> 01:44:12.120
church has dealt with in the past? As we've said, one of the tricks that Satan is playing today

01:44:12.120 --> 01:44:18.200
is he's taking new attacks. He's taking new approaches. So when the new sin of racism was

01:44:18.200 --> 01:44:24.360
invented, there's not much discussion in the historical Christian context about racism.

01:44:25.000 --> 01:44:31.160
Is that because it used to be okay and now it's bad? Or is it because it didn't exist at all?

01:44:31.160 --> 01:44:37.160
The notion didn't exist. What they call racism has always existed because it's not evil. The

01:44:37.160 --> 01:44:43.960
overwhelming majority of what is called racism or misogyny or any of these other things is actually

01:44:43.960 --> 01:44:50.200
obedience to God. It's actually telling the truth about things. That small subset that they want

01:44:50.200 --> 01:44:56.120
to hold up, that's actual hatred, that's actual wickedness that Scripture condemns, there's no

01:44:56.120 --> 01:45:01.080
need for a separate word for it because God calls that murder. It's murder in the heart to hate someone.

01:45:01.640 --> 01:45:06.360
It is not murder in the heart to say this person is not like this person. That's not murder. That's

01:45:06.440 --> 01:45:13.240
not hatred. There's nothing of the sort present to say you are not like you. God does it repeatedly in

01:45:13.240 --> 01:45:18.840
Scripture. We have permission from God to do it. In fact, we may command from God to do it because

01:45:18.840 --> 01:45:24.520
we're commanded to tell the truth. So when you're evaluating people's claims about morality,

01:45:25.160 --> 01:45:31.000
just check their work. If it's wrong, has it always been wrong? If you just discovered it's wrong,

01:45:31.000 --> 01:45:37.000
where did it come from? As soon as you go back far enough in their genealogy that you find, well,

01:45:37.000 --> 01:45:43.480
yeah, it came from some girl's vision in 1823. You're done. You don't need to examine whether

01:45:43.480 --> 01:45:50.120
the vision was checked out by any experts. That's a teaching of demons. You know that it's evil

01:45:50.120 --> 01:45:56.760
because evil is going to continuously attack the church from within. There's evil in the world

01:45:56.760 --> 01:46:02.360
that has nothing to do with the church because Satan is the prince of this world. But there's also

01:46:02.360 --> 01:46:08.680
evil within the church that behaves in different ways because Satan needs to trick us into worshiping

01:46:08.680 --> 01:46:14.520
him while we're calling on the name of God. In the episode on apostasy, we'll talk about where God

01:46:14.520 --> 01:46:19.880
says people will come and say, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy and cast out demons in your name?

01:46:19.880 --> 01:46:26.200
And he will say, truly, truly, I tell you, I never knew you. That's dire. That's something that

01:46:26.200 --> 01:46:33.400
leaves us feeling like that's scary. So we'll treat that entirely in that episode. But just remember,

01:46:33.400 --> 01:46:39.480
when someone comes to you speaking in God's name, he's not necessarily from God. And frankly, today,

01:46:39.480 --> 01:46:44.520
in the current state of the world and in the current state of our churches, when someone

01:46:44.520 --> 01:46:50.680
comes to you and says they're from God, starting with a podcaster, you should test the spirits.

01:46:50.680 --> 01:46:55.000
You shouldn't automatically believe them. Don't believe what they say because they're clever or

01:46:55.000 --> 01:47:01.240
they're flashy or gimmicky. Whatever appeals to you intrinsically cannot be relied upon.

01:47:02.040 --> 01:47:08.440
What you can rely upon is that God's word is true. The scripture is eternal. That it is

01:47:08.440 --> 01:47:14.440
existed outside of time and was transmitted to us for our benefit. When God has revealed something

01:47:14.440 --> 01:47:19.480
that's true, that says right and wrong, that's it. That's a whole shooting match.

01:47:19.560 --> 01:47:25.160
Anyone else who comes along later and says, hey, I found a new sin. You test that spirit,

01:47:25.160 --> 01:47:30.680
and then you judge according to what's going on. And when you look at these things in this simple

01:47:30.680 --> 01:47:35.560
heuristic, you're going to find all the new stuff is lies, all the new stuff is wickedness,

01:47:35.560 --> 01:47:40.680
and all the new stuff is what's popular. The old Christian teachings about these things are gone.

01:47:40.680 --> 01:47:46.040
Obeying God, that's gone. And no one wants to hear about that. Never mind. It's what Jesus

01:47:46.040 --> 01:47:53.480
exhorts continuously. We don't want to hear that because it condemns us. And that's okay. We should

01:47:53.480 --> 01:48:00.920
be aware the scripture condemns us even as Christians because that is the law that explains

01:48:00.920 --> 01:48:08.680
why the gospel is our good news. We are forgiven. We are washed white in the blood of the Lamb

01:48:08.680 --> 01:48:14.840
by virtue of God paying for those sins, paying for our unbelief, paying for our failures.

01:48:16.040 --> 01:48:20.840
But having received that payment and having received the knowledge of that payment,

01:48:20.840 --> 01:48:26.760
that's the beginning of the Christian life. It's not the end of it. So as we navigate these days

01:48:26.760 --> 01:48:32.760
that are hard and getting harder, as we seemingly have fewer and fewer pastors and teachers who

01:48:32.760 --> 01:48:39.080
will speak as God has always spoken, there's unfortunately it's going to fall more and more

01:48:39.080 --> 01:48:44.600
to men who have not necessarily been trained in these things to evaluate the claims of those who

01:48:44.600 --> 01:48:47.400
are saying, I'm here from God. Let me tell you what he really meant.

01:48:48.840 --> 01:48:56.440
To some degree, that is part of the reason for this podcast. Our hope with this podcast, with

01:48:56.440 --> 01:49:04.840
these episodes, is to equip you in order to assess the claims of others, to equip you in order to

01:49:04.840 --> 01:49:11.880
find these things in scripture. Again, we will reiterate, we have said many times for what we

01:49:11.880 --> 01:49:18.840
will continue to say. Do not simply trust the things we say. We're not saying you cannot trust

01:49:18.840 --> 01:49:23.320
us. I would say you can trust us. I believe that we have amply demonstrated that at this point.

01:49:24.040 --> 01:49:31.320
However, when it comes to the things of God, we have scripture. Scripture is the test.

01:49:32.360 --> 01:49:39.160
Scripture is the one standard. Scripture is that against which the words of any teacher,

01:49:39.160 --> 01:49:46.440
any pastor, anyone claiming to speak the words of God or to speak on behalf of God must be tested.

01:49:47.640 --> 01:49:54.440
And so take anything we say and test it against scripture. If what we say conflicts with scripture,

01:49:54.440 --> 01:50:00.520
then we are liars and wrong. It may not be intentional on our part, or it may be intentional.

01:50:01.240 --> 01:50:04.680
You, to some degree, will have to make that call for yourself.

01:50:05.320 --> 01:50:11.880
We're not saying you cannot trust anyone. Part of human life is trust, and we have to trust others,

01:50:11.880 --> 01:50:19.160
to some degree. What we are saying is that things of God must be subjected to the word of God. That

01:50:19.160 --> 01:50:25.240
applies to us as teachers, and that applies to any other teacher or pastor. It applies to all men

01:50:25.240 --> 01:50:32.520
in all places at all times. When we read the church fathers, we subject them to scripture. When we

01:50:33.240 --> 01:50:39.400
read sermons by famous pastors or famous theologians, the works of the great men

01:50:40.040 --> 01:50:45.400
of church history, we subject them to scripture. We should do the same thing with modern teachers.

01:50:46.920 --> 01:50:53.720
Because, again, it is scripture that is the only standard because it is the standard given us by

01:50:53.720 --> 01:51:01.960
God. Scripture is absolutely true and absolutely reliable. It is the rule against which all other

01:51:01.960 --> 01:51:11.960
things must be measured. I want to add a quick comment here before we close out this episode.

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Woe mentioned the burning of the magic books that occurs in the Book of Acts that is mentioned there,

01:51:21.800 --> 01:51:28.600
and the large value, the sum, the value for which those books could have been sold.

01:51:29.400 --> 01:51:34.680
It was a great deal of money. It was a great deal of money then. It would be a great deal of money

01:51:34.680 --> 01:51:43.160
today. But there is another example that is slightly different because of the way it was executed,

01:51:44.280 --> 01:51:50.520
but is still an example for Christians, a godly example of how Christians are to behave,

01:51:51.240 --> 01:51:57.800
and that is the disputation of Paris. This was, of course, the trial of the Talmud as one of the

01:51:57.800 --> 01:52:04.920
other names of it, carried out under King Louis IX. We won't go into the details here because that's

01:52:04.920 --> 01:52:13.160
not the relevant matter. The issue is that a godly Christian monarch, a godly sovereign,

01:52:14.280 --> 01:52:20.360
investigated a matter, discovered that it was wicked, and destroyed the evil materials. The

01:52:20.360 --> 01:52:26.760
Talmud is evil and should be destroyed. It is an absolutely wicked book. Collection of books,

01:52:26.760 --> 01:52:34.520
really. But the value of the copies of the Talmud that were destroyed in front of Notre

01:52:34.520 --> 01:52:43.960
Dame by Louis IX, I will admit, it is difficult to estimate in current dollars for various reasons.

01:52:43.960 --> 01:52:50.440
These were handmade. They were made of various different materials. Some of the editions were

01:52:50.440 --> 01:52:56.840
better than others as to be expected, but it is somewhere between 10 and 12,000 copies of the

01:52:56.840 --> 01:53:04.120
Talmud were burned. This was not a small number. That is an immense number of books for that day

01:53:04.120 --> 01:53:10.760
and age. Again, remember, handwritten, and the Talmud is not short. In modern printing it is

01:53:10.760 --> 01:53:17.720
thousands of pages long. If you were to roughly estimate the value of those books burned,

01:53:18.680 --> 01:53:23.880
in modern dollars it would be between 200 million and 20 billion dollars.

01:53:27.240 --> 01:53:34.200
That is the Christian response. The Christian response is to destroy evil regardless of the

01:53:34.200 --> 01:53:40.920
supposed value of it. And that is what a godly prince does. And so it is right that we have

01:53:40.920 --> 01:53:45.800
statues in various places for Louis IX. He was a Christian prince and should be remembered.

01:53:48.440 --> 01:53:55.320
But now to close out this episode. I know that many will, again, notice that we focused on the

01:53:55.320 --> 01:53:59.720
law in this episode, and that's true. We did. The law is important. I went over that previously.

01:54:02.360 --> 01:54:07.560
But there is a statement that is common in particularly Lutheranism, but others have

01:54:07.560 --> 01:54:13.640
adopted it as well, that the gospel should be permitted to predominate. Now, of course,

01:54:13.640 --> 01:54:18.360
that applies primarily to sermons and we are not pastors. We will never be pastors. We have no

01:54:18.360 --> 01:54:25.400
intention to be pastors unless God sends a giant fish to swallow me. I am not becoming a pastor.

01:54:26.120 --> 01:54:29.960
I suppose here in Tennessee perhaps it would have to be something other than a fish since we're

01:54:29.960 --> 01:54:39.240
rather landlocked. However, many misunderstand what it means for the gospel to predominate.

01:54:39.640 --> 01:54:49.160
The gospel does not predominate in terms of volume. The gospel predominates in terms of weight.

01:54:51.480 --> 01:54:57.800
And the reason for this is that no matter how many, or how terrible my sins may be,

01:54:57.800 --> 01:55:05.160
or your sins, or anyone else's sins, they are finite. Yes, the transgression itself

01:55:06.120 --> 01:55:10.680
is infinite in its nature because it is against an infinite God and the party

01:55:10.680 --> 01:55:16.120
against whom a transgression is committed does factor into the weight of the transgression.

01:55:17.240 --> 01:55:25.160
And so, yes, the weight of our sin is infinite, but the number of our sins, again, regardless

01:55:25.160 --> 01:55:30.600
of the heinousness of them, is finite because your life is finite. You can commit only so many sins.

01:55:30.600 --> 01:55:35.000
Even if you spent every waking second sinning, you could commit only so many in your life.

01:55:35.400 --> 01:55:43.080
The gospel predominates because Christ's sacrifice is of infinite value,

01:55:43.080 --> 01:55:48.840
is of infinite weight. And also your sins, if you are a Christian,

01:55:49.800 --> 01:55:56.840
are finite in that they will be erased by God when you are renewed at the Second Coming.

01:55:57.800 --> 01:56:02.840
God doesn't just promise that your sins no longer count against you.

01:56:03.160 --> 01:56:10.200
God promises to forget your sins. That which God forgets is gone in a way that God does not

01:56:10.200 --> 01:56:17.560
even begin to approach describing. It will be as if they never existed,

01:56:17.560 --> 01:56:24.280
as if those sins had never been committed. What God forgets doesn't exist. It's gone.

01:56:24.280 --> 01:56:31.720
I don't even have the words to describe. It is no longer a thing. That is what God promises.

01:56:32.680 --> 01:56:40.200
The weight of that is infinite. Nothing can predominate against that. That is the way in which

01:56:40.200 --> 01:56:49.960
the gospel predominates. And so, yes, even if most of the episode was law, the fact that we even

01:56:49.960 --> 01:56:57.240
mention the gospel permits it to predominate, because it predominates in weight. It does not

01:56:57.560 --> 01:57:06.120
predominate in the number of words dedicated to it, because Christ's sacrifice, again,

01:57:06.120 --> 01:57:13.720
is of infinite value. And the glory that awaits us in the next life is of infinite value

01:57:13.720 --> 01:57:21.720
and of infinite duration, because, of course, it is eternity. And so, the gospel predominates

01:57:21.720 --> 01:57:25.400
because it is infinite and all else compared to it is finite.

01:57:27.800 --> 01:57:33.880
And so, I just want to close with the second paragraph from the Nicene Creed,

01:57:34.600 --> 01:57:37.480
because it is a good summary of the gospel.

01:57:51.720 --> 01:57:57.320
Begotten not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

01:57:57.960 --> 01:58:03.640
Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the

01:58:03.640 --> 01:58:10.600
Holy Spirit to the Virgin Mary, and was made man, and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate,

01:58:10.600 --> 01:58:15.880
he suffered and was buried, and the third day he rose again according to the scriptures,

01:58:15.880 --> 01:58:21.560
and ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father, and he shall come again with

01:58:21.560 --> 01:58:37.480
glory to judge the quick and the dead, whose kingdom shall have no end. Amen.