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Duck Dynasty’s Patriarch: A Voice Crying in the Wilderness
Catholic World Report ^ | December 21, 2013 | Bill Maguire

Posted on 12/21/2013 3:51:57 PM PST by NYer

Why Pope Francis and the Catholic Church has more in common with Phil Robertson than with Robertson’s elitist critics.

Two weeks ago, on the Second Sunday of Advent, John the Baptist was identified in the Gospel reading as, “the voice of one crying in the wilderness” (Mt 3:3).

This week we heard another voice “crying in the wilderness”—except this time his name is Phil Robertson, and the wilderness he’s crying from is the backwoods of West Monroe, Louisiana.

How can we account, though, for the vitriol leveled against Robertson by our cultural elites, the mainstream media and LGBT interest groups? Perhaps in the same way we understand the contempt with which the reigning powers of his day responded to John the Baptist: namely, they wanted to rationalize their sin and “call evil good and good evil” (Isa 5:20).

The prophetic message of John the Baptist was as blunt as it was clear: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” (Mt 5:2). And the language he used may very well sound as coarse and offensive to modern ears as the words of the Duck Dynasty patriarch:

You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? . . . [Jesus’] winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire (Mt 3:7-12).

John the Baptist was certainly unafraid to speak truth to power—even if that meant speaking the truth about sexual morality. And for this, he was beheaded (Mt 14:1-12).

Today’s cultural elites aren’t threatening Phil Robertson with beheading, but they are threatening to remove his voice from the public sphere as best they can.

In fact, A&E network officials suspended Phil “from filming indefinitely” only a day after GQ published his remarks concerning homosexuality—remarks which his family readily acknowledged as coarse.

This punitive action came in the wake of pressure exerted by LGBT interest groups like GLAAD, who were only too glad to exact their pound of flesh:

Phil and his family claim to be Christian, but Phil’s lies about an entire community fly in the face of what true Christians believe. . . . Phil’s decision to push vile and extreme stereotypes is a stain on A&E and his sponsors who now need to reexamine their ties to someone with such public disdain for LGBT people and families.

It comes as no real surprise that many of our culture’s reigning elite find Robertson’s comments so deeply offensive, even “vile” and “extreme.” What does come as a surprise, however, is that they should on one hand revile Robertson, but on the other laud Pope Francis—indeed, going so far as to name him Person of the Year (The Advocate and Time Magazine).

Yet, for all this, Pope Francis and Phil Robertson are not really so far apart in their assessment of the sinfulness of homosexual behavior and the appropriate Christian response to homosexual persons. Indeed, Pope Francis has more in common with Robertson than with Robertson’s critics: who claim it is vile to call homosexual behavior a sin and bigoted to oppose redefining marriage.

On the push to redefine marriage and blur the distinction between good and evil:

Abp. Jorge Mario Bergoglio (in 2010): “It is not a simple political fight; but rather an attempt to destroy the plan of God. It is not about a mere legislative project . . . but, rather, it is a ‘move’ by the father of lies [i.e., Satan], who intends to confuse and trick the children of God.”

Phil Robertson: “Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. . . . Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders . . . ; they won’t inherit the kingdom of God [paraphrasing 1 Cor 6:9-10]. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

On not judging homosexual persons:

Pope Francis: “If a homosexual person is of good will and is in search of God, I am no one to judge. . . . A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality. I replied with another question: ‘Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?’ In life, God accompanies persons, and we must accompany them . . . with mercy.”

Phil Robertson: “We never, ever judge someone on who’s going to heaven, hell. That’s the Almighty’s job. We just love ‘em, give ‘em the good news about Jesus—whether they’re homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort ‘em out later, you see what I’m saying?”

As a Catholic, I cannot fully endorse Robertson’s comments. For example, he seems to think the homosexual inclination is itself sinful and is freely chosen. The Church, however, offers a more accurate teaching on these issues.

On the proper moral evaluation of homosexuality: "An overly benign interpretation [has been] given to the homosexual condition itself, some going so far as to call it neutral, or even good. Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil; and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder." (Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, 3)

On whether the homosexual inclination is freely chosen: “Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. . . . The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1257-58)

It would be wrong-headed to be overly critical of Robertson’s statements, though. After all, while he enjoys the benefit of Scripture, as a non-Catholic he doesn’t enjoy the benefit of the Magisterium to properly interpret Scripture.

This makes it all the more surprising that Robertson makes an observation that is strikingly similar to an observation made by Pope Pius XII—one that both John Paul II and Benedict XVI were fond of citing.

Phil Robertson: “Everything is blurred on what’s right and what’s wrong. . . . Sin becomes fine.”

Pope Pius XII: “The greatest sin in the world today is that men have begun to lose the sense of sin.”

We have perhaps now touched on the neuralgic issue in the Duck Dynasty controversy. Robertson’s critics do not so much object to his remarks about homosexuality, but more precisely they object to God’s remarks about homosexuality as found in his Word, that is, in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition.

Many, if not most, of our cultural elites have rejected Isaiah’s warning: “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (Is 5:20).

And it is here we discover the tragic consequences that necessarily flow from accepting the invitation to adopt a false compassion—a perverted form of compassion that would require us to condone homosexual behavior and the redefinition of marriage. To accept this invitation is, however, to accept the invitation to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit, the only sin Jesus identifies as unforgivable (cf. Lk 12:10).

John Paul II’s teaching on the “unforgivable sin” is worth quoting at some length:

If Jesus says that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit cannot be forgiven either in this life or in the next, it is because this ‘non-forgiveness’ is linked, as to its cause, to ‘non-repentance,’ in other words to the radical refusal to be converted.

Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, then, is the sin committed by the person who claims to have a ‘right’ to persist in evil—in any sin at all—and who thus rejects Redemption. One closes oneself up in sin, thus making impossible one's conversion, and consequently the remission of sins. . . . This is a state of spiritual ruin, because blasphemy against the Holy Spirit does not allow one to escape from one's self-imposed imprisonment and open oneself to the divine sources of the purification of consciences and of the remission of sins. (Dominum et Vivificantem, 46)

This is why the Holy Spirit’s mission to “convince the world concerning sin” (Jn 16:9) is the highest expression of genuine compassion and mercy. The Holy Spirit’s mission does not have as its purpose a negative, heavy-handed condemnation of the world. Rather, this convincing the world concerning sin has the purpose of restoring the human person’s dignity by restoring our relationship with the Father.

It is only when we realize the true evil of sin—when we recognize the damage sin does to us and to our relationship with the Father—that we can turn back to him in a spirit of repentance. We cannot do this, however, if we continue to rationalize our sins and refuse to call sin by its proper name.

The Holy Spirit's mission to “convince the world concerning sin” is thus a positive mission; one that invites us back home. When we are convinced of sin, like the Prodigal Son, we will accept this invitation and experience the embrace of a loving Father who restores our dignity by restoring our sonship. And, it is only when our dignity and our sonship has been restored that we can experience the true freedom and liberation that comes as a fruit of our filial relationship with God.

As the reaction to Robertson’s comments on homosexuality demonstrates, our present cultural powers that be would have us not only rationalize sin, but go the further step of giving sin a different name: calling “evil good and good evil.” This would, however, block us from seeking forgiveness and reconciliation.

We must, therefore, turn away from these powers and towards the Holy Spirit’s power—even when his message concerning sin is communicated through the “coarse” words of a self-described backwoods white trash Louisiana redneck. There is nothing less at stake, ultimately, than the salvation of the world.


TOPICS: Catholic; Evangelical Christian; Moral Issues; Religion & Culture
KEYWORDS: duckdynasty; homonaziagenda; homosexualagenda; libertyofconscience; religiousliberty

1 posted on 12/21/2013 3:51:57 PM PST by NYer
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To: Tax-chick; GregB; Berlin_Freeper; SumProVita; narses; bboop; SevenofNine; Ronaldus Magnus; tiki; ...

Ping!


2 posted on 12/21/2013 3:52:19 PM PST by NYer ("The wise man is the one who can save his soul. - St. Nimatullah Al-Hardini)
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To: NYer

I nearly screamed when Bill O’Reilly gave his pompous opinion in his talking points memo last night.

He resorted to the “judge not lest you be judged” in his backhanded support of Mr. Robertson.

And, of course, since NO ONE, according to himself, has fought for tradition as hard as he, we must all listen and accept his pronouncements as gospel.

This is religious persecution, pure and simple and until that is the argument in his defense, this is all just a circus meant to distract the masses.


3 posted on 12/21/2013 3:58:06 PM PST by Jvette
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To: Jvette

I used to enjoy Bill O’Reilly’s evening program. It has all gone to his head; he is now pompous and arrogant. I stopped watching him several years ago. No loss, whatsoever.


4 posted on 12/21/2013 4:00:58 PM PST by NYer ("The wise man is the one who can save his soul. - St. Nimatullah Al-Hardini)
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: NYer

I believe LIVING a homosexual life IS a choice. Inclinations do NOT have to be obeyed and followed. One may be inclined to steal, but reject the temptation. Others may have a deep desire to set fire to things, but stop themselves. How many temptations do we all resist daily? Homosexuality, IMO and from what I have learned, is biological and a mental problem. ACTING on it is choice!


6 posted on 12/21/2013 4:03:41 PM PST by ClearBlueSky (When anyone says its not about Islam...it's about Islam. That death cult must be eradicated.)
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To: NYer

Robertson reminds me of old testament prophets. Speaking truth to “power” and standing fast on God’s word, God’s strength and God’s protection.


7 posted on 12/21/2013 4:07:39 PM PST by Rebelbase (Tagline: optional, printed after your name on post)
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To: NYer
GLAAD: Phil and his family claim to be Christian, but Phil’s lies about an entire community fly in the face of what true Christians believe. . . .

Part of what homosexuals do is try to define 'Christians' by their standards. Interesting that we are not to 'judge' them, yet they are definitely judging Phil Robertson and his family as not being Christian ... or at least not "true" Christians per the gay definition, which is definitely warped.

Just Christians (On Homosexuality & Christian Identity)

8 posted on 12/21/2013 4:11:17 PM PST by MissMagnolia (You see, truth always resides wherever brave men still have ammunition. I pick truth. (John Ransom))
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To: NYer

Hmmmm.... I wonder if A&E is now open to RICO prosecution after violating Phil’s civil rights.


9 posted on 12/21/2013 4:12:02 PM PST by papertyger ("refusing to draw an inescapable conclusion does not qualify as a 'difference of opinion.'")
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To: Jvette

Its OK.

Ted Baxter, AKA the Leprechaun, AKA Bloviating B@stard, is a joke. And I for one do not take him seriously at all.

A certain personality tagging him as “Ted Baxter,” was brilliant. He fits that character’s profile perfectly.

His only talent in life is his ability to put his finger in the wind and see which way the fart gas drifts. At this, he has no peer.

Once he determines the direction of the manure flow, he will pontificate and obfuscate in the most mendacious fashion to make all believe that he, pusillanimous pipsqueak that he REALLY is, is a cultural icon, a leader in political thought and a tower of strength and virtue.

He is a legend in his own mind. And he will tell you so, with great verve and vigor, if you would simply genuflect and ask him.


10 posted on 12/21/2013 4:24:46 PM PST by ConradofMontferrat ( According to mudslimz, my handle is a HATE CRIME. And I HOPE they don't like it.)
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To: ConradofMontferrat

I call O’Reilly the “Falafel King”.


11 posted on 12/21/2013 4:28:19 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: ConradofMontferrat

Rush calls him “Ted O’Baxter” - how fitting!


12 posted on 12/21/2013 4:33:34 PM PST by Always A Marine
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To: NYer

Homosexual acts are sin
Adultery is sinn

I heard an Army Captain years ago say “All relationships are valid” and thought it was clever at the time, now I know it is just plain WRONG! God has designated some relationships as EVIL.


13 posted on 12/21/2013 4:39:35 PM PST by yldstrk (My heroes have always been cowboys)
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To: NYer

The United States defined in the Bible. We have stepped into the abyss and now have become a den of everything vile:

17:1 And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:
17:2 With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. [”Fornication” is interpreted/translated as “idolatry” in the Amplified Bible (AMP), the New American Bible mentions “harlotry”]
17:3 So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.
17:4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:
17:5 And upon her forehead was a name written a mystery: Babylon The Great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the Earth. [King James Version; the New International Version uses “prostitutes” instead of “harlots”].
17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.
17:9 And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sat. [King James Version; the New International Version Bible and the New American Bible use “hills” instead of “mountains”].
17:10 And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he comes, he must continue a short space.
17:11 And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goes into perdition.
17:12 And the ten horns which thou saw are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.
17:15 And he said unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sat, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.
17:18 And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigns over the kings of the earth.


14 posted on 12/21/2013 4:40:39 PM PST by realcleanguy
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To: ConradofMontferrat

LOL, well done. I think you hit nearly every one of his favorite words.


15 posted on 12/21/2013 4:56:25 PM PST by Jvette
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To: All

Cracker Barrel has announced they’re pulling Duck Dynasty products. They said they didn’t want to offend anyone. I’ve eaten there a lot. I won’t ever eat there again. I’m offended.


16 posted on 12/21/2013 5:01:58 PM PST by VerySadAmerican (".....Barrack, and the horse Mohammed rode in on.")
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To: ClearBlueSky

Acting on it is exactly a choice. I’m with ClearBlue.


17 posted on 12/21/2013 5:10:44 PM PST by bboop (does not suffer fools gladly)
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To: NYer

WEIRD - I thought exactly the same thing today.

“Oh darling, how dare that wild man in the hair shirt criticize our marriage — he said it violates Old Testament law, but doesn’t he know the culture has *changed*? We Romans are enlightened, and our civilization is invincible and new. Hope and Change!”

“Oh yes, my dear, and of course WE don’t follow THEIR backwards rules. For Zeus’ sake, the man eats locusts and wild honey. What a redneck! I’ll have his head on a platter for you as a treat for our next feast.”

“Ooh! Excellent, my darling! We will most certainly nip this sort of thing in the bud. He thinks someone greater than he is will come and back him up! Ha Ha! What a fool!”


18 posted on 12/21/2013 5:20:26 PM PST by agrarianlady
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To: Jvette

Actually Jvette, most of my vocabulary used against this clown comes from an ICON:

BOB GRANT.

HE WAS a pioneer. Rush, Hannity, Savage, and on and on, learned at that man’s knee.

Bob was a humble man who did no more than call them as he saw them.

“Its the March of the Gavones! Gagazotte!”

Levin’s famous “Get Off My Phone!” line was invented by Grant in the late ‘70’s, when Levin was still pooping in his diaper.

It was a Bob Grant hallmark.

Youngsters have NO CLUE.


19 posted on 12/21/2013 5:31:32 PM PST by ConradofMontferrat ( According to mudslimz, my handle is a HATE CRIME. And I HOPE they don't like it.)
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To: NYer
As a Catholic, I cannot fully endorse Robertson’s comments. For example, he seems to think the homosexual inclination is itself sinful and is freely chosen.

Phil is right.

It's the end result of choosing to reject God.

Scripture could not be plainer.

Romans 1:24-31 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God's righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.

20 posted on 12/21/2013 5:47:44 PM PST by metmom ( ...fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith....)
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To: VerySadAmerican
ME too!...I went to my local one just to see for myself!

Yep.....they don't care if they offend us....

..they just don't want to offend....'them'

Phil's face was nowhere to be found.

I let them know how I felt and that I wouldn't be back.

21 posted on 12/21/2013 5:53:29 PM PST by Guenevere
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To: ConradofMontferrat

I know of Bob Grant, though I never had the chance to listen to him. Seems Bill O is a pale imitation then.


22 posted on 12/21/2013 6:50:30 PM PST by Jvette
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To: NYer

The late A. W. Pink (1886-1952) said,

“The nature of Christ’s salvation is woefully misrepresented by the present-day evangelist. He announces a Savior from hell rather than a Savior from sin. And that is why so many are fatally deceived, for there are multitudes who wish to escape the Lake of fire who have no desire to be delivered from their carnality and worldliness.”


23 posted on 12/21/2013 7:14:33 PM PST by the_daug
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To: the_daug

Great and very convicting quote.


24 posted on 12/21/2013 8:09:48 PM PST by ReformationFan
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To: NYer

I think one reason for the overwhelming response to Phil Robertson’s comments is that Phil identified the specific behavior characteristic of homosexual men. They *really* don’t like that. They want “gay” to be a nebulous description, perhaps characterized by taste in clothing or music, but NOT clear descriptions of anal sex.


25 posted on 12/22/2013 4:14:16 AM PST by Tax-chick ("Our infinite sadness can only be cured by an infinite love." ~Pope Francis)
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To: Jvette
I know of Bob Grant, though I never had the chance to listen to him. Seems Bill O is a pale imitation then.

He's still around. Bob Grant Online

26 posted on 12/22/2013 4:25:33 AM PST by NYer ("The wise man is the one who can save his soul. - St. Nimatullah Al-Hardini)
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To: NYer

This is a powerful article.

One worth reading for any Christian who hesitates when the atheist or misinformed, attempt to force you to yield with the misunderstood, “...who are you to judge?...”


27 posted on 12/22/2013 5:09:01 AM PST by rbmillerjr (Ted Cruz...2016-24 ...A New Conservative Era)
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