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Greetings from your Religion Moderator
April 23, 2006 | Religion Moderator

Posted on 04/23/2006 8:01:06 AM PDT by Religion Moderator

Hello everyone. Pleased to meet you. I am your Religion Moderator.

I have been asked by several posters to let you know any special guidelines which apply to posting in the Religion Forum on Free Republic. Here goes…

First, you should know that all moderators have authority on the Religion Forum and we are individuals and therefore what is tolerable to one may not be tolerable to another. However, I have general responsibility for this particular forum and spend most of my time reading your posts and moderating the conversations. And I do hold Religion Forum posts to a higher standard.

The previous Religion Moderator is still with us and other moderators who have served as Religion Moderator may also appear on thread with this handle. In other words, you cannot be sure that I am the person who posted with the handle. However, most of the time, it will be me simply because I’m reading all of your posts.

A few guidelines:

Threads which are devotional or church-like in nature (such as daily mass readings) will be protected from challenges to doctrine, etc. Reported challenges will be pulled. The titles of the threads should be clearly designated so other posters and the moderators will know.

Threads which are not clearly designated are open to challenges, like a public square.

Posters should remember they are not “preaching to the choir” on open threads – and take care to be respectful, clear and concise in their arguments. Passers-by will value your demeanor as much – or more than – the actual substance of your post.

This is very important: meet the offensive challenge to your doctrine on the open thread, do not mash the abuse button. I will not remove a challenge simply because it is offensive to your beliefs. If you cannot defend your own confession, then you are better off avoiding the open threads and leaving the reply to someone else of your confession.

Always argue the issues – theology, philosophy, history, etc. – and never make it personal.

If I see the conversation turn personal, I will intervene by pulling posts and/or posting a warning. If the misbehavior continues, posters may find themselves having to log back in – or they may be given a time-out to cool down.

In the extreme, the threads may be banished to the smoky backroom, locked or pulled. And a hot-headed or defiant poster may be banned.

Banned posters who try to sneak back onto the forum using a different handle are nuked. Trolls are nuked.

I have no tolerance for potty language simply because it inflames other posters and results in unnecessary abuse reports that moderators then have to process. It is a waste of everyone’s time and doesn’t help the poster’s image either.

Whenever I see a profanity – or a reference or acronym for a profanity – I will remove the post. If your post was pulled and you remember using such a word, just rephrase and repost and everything will be fine.

As with all threads on the forum – hatred and any suggestion of racism or violence will be pulled. Posts which are just plain tacky may also be pulled.

Calling an author a liar is permitted – calling another poster a liar is not.

Attributing motive to an author is permitted – reading the mind of another poster is not.

Poking fun at a confession is permitted, but be careful when poking fun at another poster. If he doesn’t think it is funny, I won’t either.

Don’t worry, you’ll get the hang of it. It all boils down to being respectful – phrase your challenges as if you were the recipient, i.e. think Golden Rule.


TOPICS: General Discusssion
KEYWORDS: adminlectureseries; faq; fr; freep; moderator; religion; religionforum; religionmoderator; rm
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To: Religion Moderator

Thanks for stating your position Moderator. I understand this is a secular message board - not on the sense of secularism, but rather it means FR is without any specific religion backgrounds unlike, say, evangelical Christianity of Rapture Ready Message Board. I will keep this in mind that "the game is different on different boards".

Different boards serve different purposes. FR has plenty of intellectual-oriented politically conservative Christians or other Christendom members or non-believers. RR has evangelical Christians that are politically conservative, centrist, and even leftist-pacifist when it comes with secular politics.


51 posted on 04/23/2006 1:14:47 PM PDT by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: Religion Moderator
"Again, objectivism is philosophy not theology and thus does not qualify for protection as a "devotion" or "church-like" subject. Platonism, Marxism, Realism and so on also do not qualify for the same reason."

Marxism is antithetical to Free Republic. It would be as welcome here as Wahabist devotionals.

Platonism and Realism are narrow philosophical concepts that don’t begin to approach the integrated ideological system of Objectivism. (FWIW, Objectivism is neither .) Comparing either to Objectivism is like comparing the concept of animism to Catholicism. Animism is a “feature” of primitive religions, not a viable religion or comprehensive ideology.

Objectivism on the other hand is arguably as comprehensive, integrated and dogmatic an ideology as is LDS (and at least as conservative). The only significant difference (other than success) is that it’s atheistic, and as far as you’ve re-explained, that’s the only factor in your decision to deny equal protection for Objectivist devotionals.

I’m not really concerned with that. As Bush said yesterday, you’re “the decider” in making the call, but please don’t misrepresent Objectivism with those unreasonable analogies in order to justify excluding Objectivism.

52 posted on 04/23/2006 1:14:56 PM PDT by elfman2 (An army of amateurs doing the media's job.)
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To: colorcountry
.....There are so many insightful things that Brother Matthews makes note of which I am sure NT had listed once upon a time!......

....There is no other book in all this world that tells us as clearly about the mission of Jesus Christ as does the Book of Mormon.

***

Do you believe someone removed something fromt the New Testament? And....

Well I had ponder many of these things in the Bible as a child that had puzzled me until I found was introduced to the Book of Mormon at the age of 38 and the rest fell into place!

If so, who (or what group) removed the "plain and precious" truths.

Opposition!

Eph 6

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

2 Cor. 4

3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.

6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

53 posted on 04/23/2006 1:15:24 PM PDT by restornu (Earnestly it is impossible for man to walk with God, and also maintain the humor of a reprobate!)
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To: Religion Moderator; annalex

I notice even if I choose a particular "denominational" topic, I would still come across something that I don't expect to see. For instance, when I view threads under the topic "evangelical" I see "Catholic caucus" devotional threads there every day. I don't believe the poster should put any of these under the topic of evangelical churches because most of Catholic devotional threads would obviously not be welcome among evangelical Christians and they are not even allowed to be posted on boards of (evangelical) Christian nature except in Apologetics sub-forums (See Rapture Ready BB rule for ref: http://rr-bb.com/faq.php?faq=rr_rules_clarification#faq_rr_rules1_ ). Is there a way to remove them from topics like this?

And to the moderators, also I feel Messianic Judaism should be re-classified under evangelical Christianity rather than "other Christians". Most evangelicals would feel far closer to Messianic Jews than even mainline Protestants like Lutherans or Episcopalisns for instance. Messianic Jewish teachers like Arnold Fruchtenbaum, Zola Levitt, or Jacob Prasch can equally be called evangelical Christian Bible teachers as well. Would it be feasible to reshuffle topics like this?


54 posted on 04/23/2006 1:28:56 PM PDT by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: Salvation

Per our previous discussion.....Ping.


55 posted on 04/23/2006 1:53:14 PM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time.)
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To: Religion Moderator
Greetings from your Religion Moderator

"Greetings, sire..." (Mumbles prayer)

56 posted on 04/23/2006 1:56:19 PM PDT by Extremely Extreme Extremist (Remove card rapidly)
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To: restornu; P-Marlowe
Opposition!

So are you saying that the "opposition," darkness, or Satan had a hand in the compiling of the Bible?

Do you see where many of us Bible believing Christians might take offense at that suggestion?

What some Mormons may fail to appreciate is the deep offensiveness of their implication that Christians have something less than the full gospel of God. But mainstream Christians react, not by getting offended, but by demonstrating what they believe from the Bible, which inevitably involves showing the Mormons the differences between Biblical doctrine and Mormon doctrine. This seems to be the point at which we hear the Mormons complain that they are being slandered, that we evangelicals, Catholics, or other Christians are preaching "negativism" and marshalling a "negative onslaught" against them.

57 posted on 04/23/2006 2:05:45 PM PDT by colorcountry (Don't bother me,.... I'm living happily ever after.)
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To: Religion Moderator

**Threads which are devotional or church-like in nature (such as daily mass readings) will be protected from challenges to doctrine, etc. Reported challenges will be pulled. The titles of the threads should be clearly designated so other posters and the moderators will know.**

Thank you from all of us!


58 posted on 04/23/2006 2:05:55 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Religion Moderator

**Always argue the issues – theology, philosophy, history, etc. – and never make it personal.**

Again, thank you.


59 posted on 04/23/2006 2:07:29 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: colorcountry; Religion Moderator

You could always send me a question on a devotional thread in a Freepmail.


60 posted on 04/23/2006 2:10:49 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Salvation; Religion Moderator; NYer

So the question becomes, how do we mark a thread to be a Catholic Discussion thread? In other words, how do we have the ability to discuss current events in our religion without having to defend our dogma?

Point in fact, someone posted an article on clear walls in confessionals. By the third post, someone came in to slam confession. The article wasn't about confession but rather the openess of the confessional to the rest of the church. Is there any time that we can discuss amongst ourselves without having to defend what we believe? I haven't found a way to do this up until now.


61 posted on 04/23/2006 2:17:11 PM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time.)
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To: annalex; Religion Moderator

** For example, a Catholic should be able to discuss aspects of veneration of a particular saint without having to field basic questions about veneration of saints in general, that are certain to come form the Protestants. Likewise, a Protestant should be able to post something about a Protestant thinker, or Protestant eschatology without others piling on Protestantism in general. What would be your recommendation? I see three possibilities about such "threads of limited debate"? **

Excellent question. It seems to me that Catholics take more bashings on threads than Protestants do. Is my observation mistaken?

And then I must ask myself -- What difference does it make in the end? Will I hurt or hinder the other poster, or help or have mercy on them and cease posting?


62 posted on 04/23/2006 2:17:17 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Religion Moderator; Alex Murphy

I agree. I think it is the responsibility of the poster to seek out your feedback. The Religion Moderator has enough to do.


63 posted on 04/23/2006 2:22:26 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: netmilsmom

I just saw it and will ping my list after I read the entire thread. Thanks for the ping!


64 posted on 04/23/2006 2:28:51 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: annalex; Religion Moderator

**or help or have mercy on them and cease posting?**

Rephrase and clarify -----

Or will I help or have mercy on another poster and cease posting to that thread.


65 posted on 04/23/2006 2:32:40 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: nickcarraway; sandyeggo; Siobhan; Lady In Blue; NYer; american colleen; Pyro7480; livius; ...

FYI Ping


66 posted on 04/23/2006 2:34:09 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: colorcountry
Original question

If so, who (or what group) removed the "plain and precious" truths. ~ colorcountry

So are you saying that the "opposition," darkness, or Satan had a hand in the compiling of the Bible? ~ colorcountry

No! I did NOT say that colorcountry those are your words!

colorcountry You asked "removed from" NOT compiling!

I would call what you are doing is putting words in my mouth!

There is no need to continue our coversation!

67 posted on 04/23/2006 2:35:07 PM PDT by restornu (Earnestly it is impossible for man to walk with God, and also maintain the humor of a reprobate!)
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maybe we only need this rule:

post light
in love


68 posted on 04/23/2006 2:35:37 PM PDT by alamo boy (I left my heart in San Antonio)
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To: Religion Moderator

Nice set of guidelines.


69 posted on 04/23/2006 2:39:38 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: NZerFromHK
If you want a topic removed from a thread you can either post a reply to my attention on the thread, send me a Freepmail or make an abuse report. If you post the request on thread, the other posters may notice and avoid the problem in the future.

Any changes involving the menu for topics would require a software change.

70 posted on 04/23/2006 2:43:28 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: restornu

By compile, I meant to add or remove something. Since you said the opposition had removed "plain and precious truths," I assumed that is what you meant. I'm sorry if that isn't the case. Can you clairify your position?


71 posted on 04/23/2006 2:47:57 PM PDT by colorcountry (Don't bother me,.... I'm living happily ever after.)
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To: netmilsmom

Your example - "clear walls in confessionals?" - is like a business topic for a church meeting. Therefore you could have used the phrase "Catholic caucus" or "Catholic business" to identify the thread as a closed-door "church-like" thread and I would have made sure the assembly was not disturbed.


72 posted on 04/23/2006 2:48:07 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Salvation
It seems to me that Catholics take more bashings on threads than Protestants do. Is my observation mistaken?

On this particular open thread, LDS is taking most of the heat. And I would venture to guess that atheism, Islam or Scientology would take even more heat on most open threads.

But any confession or belief system is subject to "bashing" on open threads. That is why we should all be prepared to "give reason for the hope that is within us" when we venture into the open threads.

Posters, however, are never to be personally bashed.

73 posted on 04/23/2006 2:57:24 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: elfman2

Jumping in, if what you post sounds like Epicetus or even Lucretius, it should not offend anyone. In all these matters, tone is what counts, right?


74 posted on 04/23/2006 3:01:23 PM PDT by RobbyS ( CHIRHO)
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To: RobbyS

P.S. pardon the misspellings.


75 posted on 04/23/2006 3:02:25 PM PDT by RobbyS ( CHIRHO)
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To: colorcountry

What I find amazing is that everyday all around us in every area it seems people are rearranging or revising truth!

And you come along thinking that no such thing took place in Ancient of Days!

We have the first 5 books of Moses which is a Digest of all the events that took place up to the time of Moses!

We have a gap between Malachi and Matthew of the written word!

The LDS has a record going back 600 BC which fill in much of the gaps!

The LDS is also promised that another 2/3rds of the Book of Mormon records will also come forth in the Lord time!

In the Jewish religion they have a promise that their concept of the Messiah will come and they do not believe the NT is valid which should offend them and I am sure the mainstream believe they don't have all the word!

Try being consistant in your thinking!


76 posted on 04/23/2006 3:04:58 PM PDT by restornu (Earnestly it is impossible for man to walk with God, and also maintain the humor of a reprobate!)
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To: restornu
Argue the issues all you want - but don't make it personal!
77 posted on 04/23/2006 3:09:39 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Religion Moderator
"Argue the issues all you want - but don't make it personal!"

Good. A point of inquiry - does that mean no personal attacks on the author of the article rather than a discussion of the contents?

78 posted on 04/23/2006 3:32:21 PM PDT by ex-snook ("But above all things, truth beareth away the victory.")
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To: ex-snook

You can attack the author (as long as it is not a Freeper) - and the content of the article, ideology, philosophy, history, doctrine etc. But personal attacks of other Freepers are not tolerable.


79 posted on 04/23/2006 3:38:42 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: ex-snook

To me a personal attack is when you call the person an unkind name, but asking one to be fair, or try to be consistant in ones reasoning or the scheme of things is not an attack!

But than I never did have a secure handle on my use of the language!


80 posted on 04/23/2006 3:43:31 PM PDT by restornu (Earnestly it is impossible for man to walk with God, and also maintain the humor of a reprobate!)
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I think this says it well:

The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.

But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!


81 posted on 04/23/2006 3:49:26 PM PDT by alamo boy (I left my heart in San Antonio)
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To: All
I went to a fight and a hockey game broke out!
82 posted on 04/23/2006 3:50:44 PM PDT by big'ol_freeper (..it takes some pretty serious yodeling to..filibuster from a five star ski resort in the Swiss Alps)
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To: Religion Moderator

Thank you for that comment, Religion Moderator! I have been wondering about discussing certain "In-house" topics, and hadn't figured out how to do it. After some early attemps of mine turned out not good (from my POV) I had decided to stop doing that. Thank you again.


83 posted on 04/23/2006 4:02:50 PM PDT by Knitting A Conundrum (Act Justly, Love Mercy, and Walk Humbly With God Micah 6:8)
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To: RobbyS

Unfortunately, sometimes tone is hard to make clear in an-off-the-cuff posting, and we sound more strident than we want or mean to. It can be difficult.


84 posted on 04/23/2006 4:05:39 PM PDT by Knitting A Conundrum (Act Justly, Love Mercy, and Walk Humbly With God Micah 6:8)
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To: Salvation; Religion Moderator; restornu
It seems to me that Catholics take more bashings on threads than Protestants do. Is my observation mistaken?

I'm sure that we all believe our own particular theological bent "takes more bashings" than the other person's - especially since (what a coincidence), we believe our own particular theological bent is right, and the other person's is in need of correction. If Catholics suffer bashing more than others, one explanation might be because most threads are Catholic threads! Until restornu began her LDS devotional threads, I doubt you find a single LDS thread on FR in the last four years that didn't see some form of "Mormon bashing" within the first twenty posts (and I'm not even counting doctrinal challenges). And proportionally, more Calvinists have been banned than members of any other theological group. Everyone claims their own group is being singled out, trust me! Each group has their own cross to bear, justly or unjustly. It's how each of us reacts to the perceived slight that marks our actions as "Christian" or not, IMO, and marks our posts (and our FR posting privileges) for removal when they're not.

Proverbs 25:15 tells us that "By forbearance a ruler may be persuaded, And a soft tongue breaks the bone.". And Proverbs 27:6 says "Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy."

IMO "bashing" occurs when we use others (and their beliefs) as target practice for our threads and posts, not really giving a thought personally towards them or their belief systems. We defend our actions by claiming that we're using FR as a mission field, when what we really do is behave like it's our private shooting range. That, IMO, is what "bashing" is. I should know - I've done it myself.

85 posted on 04/23/2006 4:23:31 PM PDT by Alex Murphy (Colossians 4:5)
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To: Alex Murphy

** And proportionally, more Calvinists have been banned than members of any other theological group. **

I don't know about that claim. A lot of SSPXers got banned for eating their own.


86 posted on 04/23/2006 4:43:02 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: alamo boy

Oh come on... arguing about religion is an age old pastime, and here nobody gets killed! I can go along with most of what the RM has issued, but I hope it doesn't turn into a tight, PC, limited discussion where people are afraid to say what they think. I mean, if a muslim came on here I'm going to tell him some things he might find offensive -- in fact given their notoriously thin skins I'm quite sure he would.

OTOH, it would be nice if the Catholic discussion threads weren't constantly attacked and hijacked by so-called protestants that can't stand the idea of the Catholic Church and what we believe.

As far as Mormon threads, or whatever, I just don't frequent them. Really only Catholic and Episcopal threads for me.


87 posted on 04/23/2006 4:58:01 PM PDT by Flavius Josephus (Nationalism is not a crime.)
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To: Religion Moderator
"You can attack the author (as long as it is not a Freeper) "

Well then I hope you will cut off any attacks on the author such as what was said some years ago, or his political affiliation, or his religion, or whatever else may ignore the subject topic of the post. Continuous shots at the messenger rather than the message do not advance the discussion.

88 posted on 04/23/2006 5:08:44 PM PDT by ex-snook ("But above all things, truth beareth away the victory.")
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To: Religion Moderator; Salvation; NYer

Cool!
Perhaps we can cut down on the Anti-Catholic trolls if we put "Catholic Business" on the threads that are discussing the Pope, the Rosary, any Saint or Mary!

Ladies, can you ping your lists with this information?


89 posted on 04/23/2006 5:14:46 PM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time.)
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To: Religion Moderator

How interesting. I did not realize there was a formal Moderator for religion threads. This all seems sensible to me.

Good luck and God Bless!


90 posted on 04/23/2006 6:17:45 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: Salvation; Alex Murphy

Everyone seems to feel that his sector of faith is being attacked the most. I would say from my own perspective, the pre-trib dispensational Bible-believing Christians seem to get the flanks from everyone: Catholics (whether SSPX, Traditionalist, Conservative Catholics, or semi-moderate "Catholics"), Orthodox, doctrinally conservative mainline Protestants including Reformed Calvinists/Presbyterians, conservative Lutherans and Episcopalians, and Wesleyans/Mathodist Arminians, and even many post-trib leaning evangelicals.

Perhaps not more than 3 or 4 of us are active on this sub-forum, and each time we post something attacks start to spring up almost immediately.


91 posted on 04/23/2006 6:42:25 PM PDT by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: restornu; P-Marlowe
1ST NEPHI 13:29. And after these plain and precious things were taken away it [i.e., the "book" of 13:23--obviously the Bible] goeth forth unto all the nations of the Gentiles; and after it goeth forth unto all the nations of the Gentiles, yea, even across the many waters which thou hast seen with the Gentiles which have gone forth out of captivity, thou seest--because of the many plain and precious things which have been taken out of the book, which were plain unto the understanding of the children of men, according to the plainness which is in the Lamb of God--because of these things which are taken away out of the gospel of the Lamb, an exceedingly great many do stumble, yea, insomuch that Satan hath great power over them.

Who has removed "plain and precious things" from the Bible? According to 1 Nephi 13:26, the "great and abominable church" did. And, 1 Nephi 13:27 informs us, "all this have they done that they might pervert the right ways of the Lord, that they might blind the eyes and harden the hearts of the children of men." The same chapter calls the state of these individuals an "awful state of blindness (v. 32)," which is to be remedied by other "records" being revealed to men which "shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them" (v. 40).

Resty, I am consistant in my thinking.

92 posted on 04/23/2006 6:52:35 PM PDT by colorcountry (Don't bother me,.... I'm living happily ever after.)
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To: elfman2
Would you be willing to review an Objectivist devotional post

Do you have devotionals for Ayn Rand?

93 posted on 04/23/2006 7:16:02 PM PDT by D-fendr
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To: self

reference ping


94 posted on 04/23/2006 8:17:07 PM PDT by PetroniusMaximus
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To: Religion Moderator
"i.e. think Golden Rule."

Would that be...

"Post unto others as you would have them post unto you."



(Thanks for the rule clarification - btw.)
95 posted on 04/23/2006 8:24:00 PM PDT by PetroniusMaximus
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To: PetroniusMaximus

LOLOL! I like that and might use it unless you object, of course.


96 posted on 04/23/2006 8:25:47 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Religion Moderator
"LOLOL! I like that and might use it unless you object, of course."

Feel free to!!!

(We can discuss royalties later.)


:)

97 posted on 04/23/2006 8:32:01 PM PDT by PetroniusMaximus
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To: Religion Moderator

Sounds great to me, dear Religion Moderator, and perfectly reasonable to boot. You have my whole-hearted support.


98 posted on 04/23/2006 8:40:48 PM PDT by betty boop (The world of Appearance is Reality’s cloak -- "Nature loves to hide.")
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To: Religion Moderator
Poking fun at a confession is permitted

I'm not sure what that means. Do you mean a personal anedote, like the Confessions of St. Augustine?

99 posted on 04/23/2006 9:01:04 PM PDT by stop_fascism
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To: stop_fascism

Or perhaps a poster finds it humorous that a particular religion does a certain thing a certain way and makes a joke of it ...


100 posted on 04/23/2006 9:10:21 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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