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Crying Kids Pray Over George Bush At Jesus Camp - Film Documents Childrens' Summer At 'Jesus Camp'
WFSB.com, Hartford ^ | September 26, 2006 | Unattributed

Posted on 09/27/2006 6:43:02 AM PDT by LurkedLongEnough

LOS ANGELES -- The new documentary "Jesus Camp" is shocking Christians and non-Christians alike with its scenes of children sobbing and crying out to God at a Pentecostal summer camp in North Dakota.

The film follows Midwestern children Rachael, now 10, Levi, now 13, and Tory, now 11, who attended Fischer's Bible camp in Devils Lake, N.D., in 2005, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Filmmaker Heidi Ewing said she was raised Catholic and her co-director, Rachel Grady, is Jewish, enabling them to present what they hope is a neutral view of Pastor Becky Fischer's "Kids on Fire" program.

Grady said Fischer let them make the documentary in hopes of reaching unsaved people.

In the film, the children cheered when asked if they'd be willing to give up their lives for Jesus, prayed over a cardboard cutout of President George W. Bush and cried as they pleaded for an end to abortion, the Los Angeles Times reported. The paper said that one of the children is home-schooled by a mother who teaches that "science doesn't prove anything."

Ewing said the children explained that they wept because God's heart is broken over a lost and sinful world. But she added that the children didn't seem unhappy -- just more intense than the average American child. Grady said all of the kids plan to become missionaries.

Some critics have labeled the camp a frightening example of brainwashing and child abuse.

"This is war! Are you part of it or not?," Fischer shouted at the children during the film.

Fischer proudly compared her Bible camp to indoctrination of young boys by extremist Muslims.

"If you look at the world's population, one third of that 6.7 billion people are children under the age of 15," Fischer said. "Where should we be putting our efforts? Where should we be putting our focus? I'll tell you where our enemies are putting it. They're putting it on the kids. They're going into the schools."

Fischer went on to say that Muslims in other countries are taking their kids to camps like "we take our kids" to bible camps. She said Muslims are teaching their kids to use rifles, how to put on bomb belts and to use machine guns.

"It's no wonder with that kind of intense training in discipling (sic) that those young people are ready to kill themselves for the cause of Islam," Fischer said. "I want to see young people who are as committed to the cause of Jesus Christ as the young people are to the cause of Islam. I want to see them as radically laying down their lives for the gospel as they are over in Pakistan and in Israel and Palestine and all those different places. Because we have, excuse me, but we have the truth."

The filmmakers told the Times that they want the film to "make a broad statement about how politics and faith have become inexorably intertwined in America."

Fischer said that she plans to help promote the movie and that she is grateful for the national attention she's gotten from the movie and its controversy.

"I couldn't have paid for this kind of advertising," she said.

In the About Film section of the movie's Web site, it describes the movie as follows:

A growing number of Evangelical Christians believe there is a revival underway in America that requires Christian youth to assume leadership roles in advocating the causes of their religious movement. Jesus Camp follows a group of young children to Pastor Becky Fischer's "Kids on Fire Summer Camp", where kids are taught to become dedicated Christian soldiers in God's army and are schooled in how to take back America for Christ. The film is a first-ever look into an intense training ground that recruits born-again Christian children to become an active part of America's political future.

"Jesus Camp" is already open in New York and will open in 20 more cities across the United States Oct. 6.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: North Dakota
KEYWORDS: christian; evangelism; film; jesuscamp; madrassas; pentecostal; religion
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1 posted on 09/27/2006 6:43:03 AM PDT by LurkedLongEnough
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To: LurkedLongEnough

WTF???


2 posted on 09/27/2006 6:45:23 AM PDT by misterrob
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To: LurkedLongEnough
Fischer proudly compared her Bible camp to indoctrination of young boys by extremist Muslims.

Except the Christian kids aren't going to KILL for their religion.

3 posted on 09/27/2006 6:45:24 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: misterrob

Give me a camera and I'll find you a nutty religious group


4 posted on 09/27/2006 6:45:53 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: LurkedLongEnough
Translation:

How dare the children pray for President Bush! Why, they ought to be praying for Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi to seize control of the government!

5 posted on 09/27/2006 6:48:34 AM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: LurkedLongEnough
"politics and faith have become inexorably intertwined in America."

Right. America is BAD.

Other countries are better. They would never mix politics with relgion.

6 posted on 09/27/2006 6:48:54 AM PDT by ladyjane
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To: LurkedLongEnough
Fischer said that she plans to help promote the movie and that she is grateful for the national attention she's gotten from the movie and its controversy.

This woman either needs a lesson in PR 101, the law of unintended consequences, or both.
7 posted on 09/27/2006 6:49:51 AM PDT by beezdotcom
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To: LurkedLongEnough

Obligatory graphic.

8 posted on 09/27/2006 6:50:17 AM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: AppyPappy
"Except the Christian kids aren't going to KILL for their religion."

The following comment could be construed as a call for exactly that:

"It's no wonder with that kind of intense training in discipling (sic) that those young people are ready to kill themselves for the cause of Islam," Fischer said. "I want to see young people who are as committed to the cause of Jesus Christ as the young people are to the cause of Islam. I want to see them as radically laying down their lives for the gospel as they are over in Pakistan and in Israel and Palestine and all those different places.."

I'm all for good Christian education. I just hope Fischer isn't trying to out-Islam Islam.
9 posted on 09/27/2006 6:50:37 AM PDT by LIConFem (Just opened a new seafood restaurant in Great Britain, called "Squid Pro Quid")
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To: LurkedLongEnough

I suppose the liberal America haters are concerned about the Evangelicals and their voting power, so they must attack the children now. This film is offensive in its premise, let alone the content. But because it isn't about Muslims, it will go unchallenged.


10 posted on 09/27/2006 6:52:41 AM PDT by TommyDale (Iran President Ahmadinejad is shorter than Tom Daschle!)
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To: LurkedLongEnough

Let's see... One "was raised Catholic" that means she's gotten too superior for the Faith of her parents. The other one "is Jewish." I'd like to know what that means. Most of the Jewish folks I know (Reformed Jews)aren't religious at all, and I would argue that being anything less than Conservative Jewish, isn't being in a religion at all. Oh, yeah, these two are completely neutral...


11 posted on 09/27/2006 6:52:50 AM PDT by old and tired (Run Swannie, run!)
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To: LurkedLongEnough

Sick of these f'ing cowards with their cheap shot hatchet jobs.

So when are these two brave filmmakers going to take their cameras into the madrassas of Waziristan, where children are praying for the beheading of George W. Bush and the destruction of the USA?


12 posted on 09/27/2006 6:55:21 AM PDT by SirJohnBarleycorn
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To: LurkedLongEnough
The film follows Midwestern children Rachael, now 10, Levi, now 13, and Tory, now 11, who attended Fischer's Bible camp in Devils Lake, N.D.

Let me guess....they picked the location.

13 posted on 09/27/2006 6:55:28 AM PDT by Niteranger68 (I gigged your peace frog.)
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To: LIConFem

You notice she didn't say they were going to kill for their religion. Every Christian should be ready to lay down his life...because he will.


14 posted on 09/27/2006 6:56:45 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: LIConFem
I'm all for good Christian education. I just hope Fischer isn't trying to out-Islam Islam.

I'm not suprised at the existence of this radical, kook-fringe Christianity. For people like this, religion is incidental to the deeper psychological pathologies. They are dangerous, and need to be shut down because what they are doing here is truly child abuse.

At the same time, I am concerned that kook fringe groups like this will define Evangelical Christianity. The last thing Christians need is for Jesus Camp to be the image the world takes away from evangelical youth ministry. As someone who has worked in Christian camps through college, I can emphasize that the hatred and intolerance spewed on the trailer is not what we taught there.

There's also the possiblity - which I discount, but it should be stated - that the footage may be manipulated via editing and selective quotations of the kids to make the camp, and by extension, Christians, look far worse than it actually is.

15 posted on 09/27/2006 6:57:37 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: LurkedLongEnough
I saw this movie reviewed in the NYT Friday movies section. Of course the reviewer was delighted that they could catch the "Christians" gathering up their 'Army'.

I don't like manipulation of kids, no matter what religion it is. You can introduce the love of God and the fact of Jesus as your personal Savior without going overboard about it. It's more likely to stick when done gently, anyway.

16 posted on 09/27/2006 7:00:15 AM PDT by SuziQ
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To: jude24

It does look really bad, all by itself. A segment on GMA just now was devoted to it. The kids were scary in their intensity.


17 posted on 09/27/2006 7:02:43 AM PDT by Rte66
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To: LIConFem

You need a reading comprehension course.


18 posted on 09/27/2006 7:03:59 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (God has blessed Republicans with political enemies who are going senile.)
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To: jude24

I can back you up on that. I have some involvement with a Christian Camp as a bus driver and a few other things. Behaviour like portrayed in thsi film is counter to the reality of Christian camps.


19 posted on 09/27/2006 7:06:04 AM PDT by cyclotic (Support Cub Scouting-Raising boys to be men, and politically incorrect at the same time.)
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To: Rte66
I will have to watch the film when it comes out in general release.

If it is what I - and I think you - suspect it will be, perhaps it should be required viewing for all people involved in youth ministry. A big "don't-do-this" advertisement.

20 posted on 09/27/2006 7:06:04 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: SirJohnBarleycorn
So when are these two brave filmmakers going to take their cameras into the madrassas of Waziristan, where children are praying for the beheading of George W. Bush and the destruction of the USA?

Never gonna happen because, like you said, they're basically cowards. It's much easier and great fun to attack and hollow out traditional American cultural and religious themes. They score points with their liberal friends, provide themselves with proof of the christian boogeyman, (never mind the straw sticking out of his sleeves) and best of all, there is absolutely no risk involved.

21 posted on 09/27/2006 7:06:31 AM PDT by ecomcon
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To: LIConFem
radically laying down their lives for the gospel

It could be interpreted the way you suggest by someone who doesn't understand what it means to lay your life down for the gospel.

Matthew 16:24-26

24Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life?

It's about denying selfish and worldly desires and committing yourself to the glory of God. Not about blowing anyone up.

22 posted on 09/27/2006 7:12:57 AM PDT by Pete
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To: ecomcon
See, I think this provides a service to us. It may have been intended to accomplish the malevolent goals you suggest (to make traditional American Christianity look bad), but I think this is an opportunity for us to re-evaluate and ask if we go too far in the hard sell to our kids? Do we actually brain-wash them in an attempt to make sure they are converted? Or do we rather asssist them with a relational discipleship model, coming alongside of them and helping them think through the intersection of their faith and their life?

If the film is accurate - and at this time, there is no evidence to suggest it is not - then, as a conservative Christian I must say they provided a service: they identified a dangerous element within our own ranks. The pastor on that trailer sounded mentally unhinged, and assuming no editing shenanigans went on, she could quite easily become a Christian fundamentalist terrorist. It's time to police our own.

23 posted on 09/27/2006 7:13:48 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: Pete
It could be interpreted the way you suggest by someone who doesn't understand what it means to lay your life down for the gospel.

That would be a legitimate interpretation if that pastor didn't cite Muslim kids in Palastine and Iraq as her examples.

24 posted on 09/27/2006 7:14:42 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: jude24

I don't know many who would do this - it was really N*zi-esque. Very, very. You would have expected those blonde Aryan twins to be singing on stage.

I've never been to or seen a Bible camp like this - but then, I'm pretty old-fashioned.


25 posted on 09/27/2006 7:15:42 AM PDT by Rte66
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To: jude24
That would be a legitimate interpretation if that pastor didn't cite Muslim kids in Palastine and Iraq as her examples.

I believe it is irresponsible to say that this woman is suggesting violence by taking a quote out of context. Combine the quoted portion with the following from the article.

Fischer went on to say that Muslims in other countries are taking their kids to camps like "we take our kids" to bible camps. She said Muslims are teaching their kids to use rifles, how to put on bomb belts and to use machine guns.

Any honest interpretation recognizes that she is contrasting Christian camps with Muslim camps.

26 posted on 09/27/2006 7:17:44 AM PDT by Pete
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To: Pete

These kids had on camo makeup on their faces and were wielding huge swordlike poles while doing ninja moves. It may be the way to reach kids nowadays, I don't know.

*I* didn't like it, with several kids featured speaking in tongues - but that's not *my* thing, so it's just my opinion of it.


27 posted on 09/27/2006 7:19:59 AM PDT by Rte66
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To: LIConFem
I want to see them as radically laying down their lives for the gospel

don't get worried about this statement. It simply means that if you are asked " renounce Jesus or die" that you would be able to die and still say "I believe in Jesus Christ". No violence in that....the violence is the one holding a gun to your head and doesn't think it's enought to kill you but that he wants you to renounce Jesus Christ as you bleed to death. Whether you renounce Jesus or not, he is still gonna kill you. These kids are not being asked to kill themselves along with others in the name of Jesus but to hold on to the faith when someone wants to kill them BECAUSE of their faith.

28 posted on 09/27/2006 7:23:06 AM PDT by shiva
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To: LIConFem

The idea of being "ready to lay down your life for the Gospel" is one that has been around for a long time. In my experience it is more of a statement that one would rather be killed than give up their faith, not ready to go kill innocents to promote it. I sincerely hope this is what those running the camp mean.


29 posted on 09/27/2006 7:24:08 AM PDT by Ingtar (Prensa dos para el inglés)
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To: Rte66; jude24
Just so you know, I am not Pentecostal. My view is this. There are primary doctrines and there are secondary doctrines. As far as I understand, Pentecostals hold to the deity of Christ, his death, resurrection and atonement for sin that is, the Gospel. Those are the major doctrines. I am grieved when I read Jesus' prayer for unity in his church in the gospel of John and then see division in the church over secondary matters.
30 posted on 09/27/2006 7:25:17 AM PDT by Pete
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At a Pentecostal camp? Doesn't everyone know that Pentecostals ALWAYS cry and slobber when they get together!

LOL! No kidding, they are among the most emotional Christians I have ever seen. Just visit your local Pentecostal church some Sunday. You can witness it first hand. The crying, the screaming, the moaning, the speaking in tongues. All part of a "usual" Sunday service.


31 posted on 09/27/2006 7:25:45 AM PDT by micho
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To: AppyPappy
Give me a camera and I'll find you a nutty religious group.

Yup.

Personally, I prefer to "indoctrinate" my own child. I do not like the idea of sending my kids off to an isolated camp that uses such techniques...IF...the film is an accurate presentation of such.

I homeschooled, homechurched, and attended a Bible church with my eighteen-year-old son who is now attending college and considers himself a Christian. I never cared for revival-style (or TV preacher) Christianity, but I know some folks who got saved...and stayed saved because of it. However, a lot of revival style tactics involve route learning and pat sayings. They don't take unless there is regular reinforcement of the same techniques.

Give your child a solid background in the Bible...fellowship within a church that shares your beliefs and is not too legalistic or too liberal...live your life as Christ would want it...and try your best NOT to be a hypocrite 99% of the time, (we all are sinners...there for the grace of God go I) teach critical thinking skills, and the child should turn out all right. No guarantees, of course...but then free will is a gift from GOD and a good example from the parents can do wonders.

32 posted on 09/27/2006 7:26:18 AM PDT by demnomo
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To: micho

I was going to make the same point you make in post #31 supplemented by my post #30.


33 posted on 09/27/2006 7:27:55 AM PDT by Pete
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To: LurkedLongEnough
cried as they pleaded for an end to abortion,

The nerve of them! How dare those children lament the bloody slaughter of one-third of their generation?!?!?!

34 posted on 09/27/2006 7:28:11 AM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilisation is aborting, buggering, and contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: demnomo

Hi Demnomo

Maybe "Saved". I find that many "Saved" people aren't sure why they need a Savior. They simply bought into the Jesus thing because it sounded good. I asked my teen Sunday School class "Are you are good person who occaisonally does bad things or a bad person who occaisonally does good things?". They all agreed they were good. If you are good, why do you need a Savior?

If you want a better idea of what I am saying, download this mp3 and give a listen

http://www.wavtechnologies.com/media/mp3/Sermon_20060910.mp3

Another good example is Ray Comfort's famous "Hells Best Kept Secret" and "True and False Conversions" available here

http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&keyword=Pastor%5ERay%5EComfort

You are 100% right. We aren't trained to be critical thinkers and that is why we don't truly understand our need for Salvation.


35 posted on 09/27/2006 7:39:17 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: Ingtar
" I sincerely hope this is what those running the camp mean."

As do I. That's probably the case.
36 posted on 09/27/2006 7:46:26 AM PDT by LIConFem (Just opened a new seafood restaurant in Great Britain, called "Squid Pro Quid")
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To: LurkedLongEnough

So what is this? A way to show Christians as 'radical' as Muslims?


37 posted on 09/27/2006 7:48:10 AM PDT by sandbar
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To: LurkedLongEnough

If only they shouted Allah Akbar while strapping bomb belts to themselves...........


38 posted on 09/27/2006 7:49:52 AM PDT by Brett66 (Where government advances – and it advances relentlessly – freedom is imperiled -Janice Rogers Brown)
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To: Pete
Any honest interpretation recognizes that she is contrasting Christian camps with Muslim camps.

Generally, I am hte first guy to give someone the benefit of the doubt; that said, it is not deserved in this opinion. Other posters had referenced the Ninja/camoflauge aspects. Then there's the comparison between these kids "laying down their lives for Christ" and the Islamic terrorists in Palastine and Iraq. The whole picture is not of an orthodox, go-out-and-preach-the-gospel message. I've grown up hearing those. This didn't ring that way. The whole picture makes those comments sound frighteningly like what is heard in the madrasssas of Pakistan.

39 posted on 09/27/2006 7:50:27 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: Balding_Eagle
And you need to stop being so defensive. If your reading comprehension was so wonderful, you'd have noticed that there were no accusations or condemnations in my post.
40 posted on 09/27/2006 7:51:41 AM PDT by LIConFem (Just opened a new seafood restaurant in Great Britain, called "Squid Pro Quid")
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To: LIConFem
you'd have noticed that there were no accusations or condemnations in my post.

Oh, OK, that makes what you said correct.

41 posted on 09/27/2006 7:54:55 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (God has blessed Republicans with political enemies who are going senile.)
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To: jude24
I agree substantially. However, The point of the film, politically, is to morally equate Islamic fundamentalism with Christian fundamentalism.

Let religions believe and say what they want to. Violence is the dividing line.

42 posted on 09/27/2006 7:57:32 AM PDT by ecomcon
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To: LurkedLongEnough

LOL, go Christians go!


43 posted on 09/27/2006 7:59:35 AM PDT by roses of sharon
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To: LurkedLongEnough
a Bible camp in Devil's Lake? How funny!
44 posted on 09/27/2006 8:07:17 AM PDT by knittnmom (...surrounded by reality)
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To: Balding_Eagle
"Oh, OK, that makes what you said correct."

I made no statements of fact. I simply expressed an opinion as to one possible interpretation of what was said by Ms. Fischer, and the hope that that interpretation was incorrect.

Perhaps it's you who needs remedial reading comprehension lessons.
45 posted on 09/27/2006 8:08:08 AM PDT by LIConFem (Just opened a new seafood restaurant in Great Britain, called "Squid Pro Quid")
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To: LIConFem

The underlying theme of Christ was to bring peace to earth. That is 180 degrees from the method by which Mohammed determined to bring the islam to the world.

The article should be read with that perspective in mind. The fact that is needs to be pointed out shows how ignorant many have become about the Christian faith.


46 posted on 09/27/2006 8:14:44 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (God has blessed Republicans with political enemies who are going senile.)
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To: LurkedLongEnough

Haven't seen the film, probably won't.

But weeping is normal, everyday stuff in pentacostal worship. If you come from a more staid background, it can be a bit off-putting, but there is nothing sinister about it.

In a world in which Islam is on the advance, even secular christians and jews may be called upon to lay down their lives. We have soldiers laying down their lives right now, every day of the week. If you expect to be a missionary these days, especially in any country where Islam is widespread, you have to face the reality of your own physical mortality.

This may not be normal subject of conversation around the dinner table, but in any discussion with would-be missionaries, you may as well get it right out in the open. Every cop, every fireman, every soldier knows his life is potentially forfeit. Every missionary knows the same thing.


47 posted on 09/27/2006 8:27:54 AM PDT by marron
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To: Balding_Eagle
The article should be read with that perspective in mind. The fact that is needs to be pointed out shows how ignorant many have become about the Christian faith.

Don't assume that there aren't militant Christians out there. This film may have found some.

48 posted on 09/27/2006 8:28:55 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: AppyPappy

Thanks for the links.

You're so right about many folks not understanding the need for a Savior...or the meaning of being truly Saved.

I have a friend who attended a Billy Graham Crusade and thought she was saved for years afterwards...even though she never attended church or opened her Bible, let alone understood why Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice. Fortunately for her, she met someone who set her straight. I know this may tick off some Billy Graham FReeper fans, but my friend has very little respect for Billy Graham Ministries for some reason or reasons.


49 posted on 09/27/2006 2:38:50 PM PDT by demnomo
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