Global Christian Perspectives – September 11, 2015

Here are the proposed topics for this week.  .

News Segment:  30  mins  – Times are flexible.


                Queen Elizabeth is now the longest reigning British monarch.  

Unrest at the Vatican

Is this the press making much to do about nothing, or is this the beginnings of a serious conflict?

Problems for Science

As someone who has been concerned about the politicization of science for some time I am not surprised.  A key focus here will be why was the vote mentioned early in the article for requiring reproducibility a party line vote.

Going to Jail for Christ.


Allan Bevere has a slightly different position.


I generally agree with Eastman.

News Segment:  30  mins

Church and State.

How to be a Christian with a hostile government.   Granted Hostility towards Christians in the United States and Europe is minor compared to elsewhere in the world, but it is also new.  In my lifetime we have gone from supportive to mildly hostile, and the conflicts are growing to the point that even the concept of religious liberty is now controversial.

(Note that the topic list is prepared by host Elgin Hushbeck, Jr.)

One thought on “Global Christian Perspectives – September 11, 2015”

  1. Won’t be able to participate in the conversation tomorrow so I thought I would offer the following thoughts:

    Congratulations to Queen Elizabeth II —
    For the record, if you saw a photograph of my mother, you might think you were looking at Queen Elizabeth, though she looks a bit “warmer”. My mother’s sons didn’t give her as much trouble as the Queen’s might have done.

    The Queen is to be congratulated on this milestone for a number of reasons. First, in a time when monarchies seem to be on the decline (or perhaps disappearing from sight – how many people know that there are still active monarchies in several European countries as well as Africa and Asia), that England has maintained a monarchy for over 1200 years is quite remarkable. Still, will the impact of Queen Elizabeth’s reign be the same as the impact of Queen Victoria’s?

    Unrest at the Vatican —
    Personally, I think there is already a conflict taking place inside the Vatican. I just don’t think the public knows the extent. You cannot have a bureaucracy as entrenched as the one in the Vatican accept any sort of radical change and especially the changes espoused by Pope Francis right after Pope Benedict. The problem is that there is a “veil of secrecy” surrounding the Vatican and I doubt that we will ever be privy to what takes place there.

    Problems for Science —
    Sort of hate to miss this one – define reproducibility – part of the problem is that a lot of people don’t understand what this term means. For the non-science (and especially one who thinks in Piagetian concrete terms), it means that if you get a particular answer the first time, then you get the same answer the next time. In more abstract terms, it means that we understand what variables we can control and which we have to deal with, leading to the wonderful world of statistics. I see the terms of the aforementioned bill being in terms of experiments being repeated exactly time and time again (which really can’t be done).

    I think this is a continuation of the problem that arose from the climate change/e-mail scandal from a few years ago – have to look that up to get the specifics.

    Quick note – in 2011, a survey showed that 45 members of the House had a J. D., 7 MBAs, 7 MDs, 2 PhD, a Master of Divinity, and a Master of Arts in Religion – this was for the class of Representatives elected in 2010. This wasn’t broken down by party so not much more can be said. Also 5 of this group attended college but did not finish and two did not go beyond high school. So not altogether sure what that all means. Also, what is the occupational breakdown for Parliament?

    Going to jail for Christ —
    For me, there are two issues at play. One is the state of Ms. Davis’ Christian growth. She is a relatively newcomer to Christianity and is still, in my opinion, learning. In my fundamentalist churches, there is a heavy reliance on the Old Testament because it, at times, seems very black and white, very cut and dried. But it is only when you get into the New Testament and begin really learning do things change.

    I was raised in an environment that said the separation of races was Biblically justified. And I have friends today whose views haven’t changed that much. But when you encounter discrimination or when you see the hypocrisy of such beliefs, your thoughts begin to change.

    The conundrum Christians face today is that we are often faced with moral and ethical choices. I don’t smoke but can I work at a place that sells tobacco products, especially if it means putting food on the table?

    When I was in college, I contemplated seeking conscientious objector status but decided against it because I couldn’t “pass” the test. Are we now going to apply such rigorous standards to the minutia of everyday life.

    Do we see the world in color or black and white?

    Church and State —
    This is a case where I think we need to define the terms. There are those who will tell me that my baptism at the age of 3 months didn’t count and that I needed to be baptized again for it to have any meaning. There are those who will push me on this point and say that I will not receive salvation. If there is a hostility, I see it coming from a group who feel that they have the answers and the rest of the world are dummies and they are angry at government for not letting them tell everyone what to do.

    I am reminded that in 1960 there were those who were opposed to John Kennedy running for President simply because he was Roman Catholic (and if my memory serves me well, many of those who were opposed to his running were Catholics themselves). And what John Kennedy told the Houston Ministerial Alliance in 1960 still holds true; if the dictates of the religion begin to conflict with the duties of the position, he would quit the position.

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