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Old 06-17-2005, 09:56 AM   #46
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Sexual desire, lust, whatever you want to call it, seems just like a natural human feeling. All you have to do is look at the delicious men in my avatar and signature to see desire. Yet I didn't choose to find them attractive. It just happened when I laid eyes upon them. How is this sinful if I can't help it? Or am I just misunderstanding everything.
It's not sinful to find people attractive. It's not even sinful to be sexually tempted. The devil tempts everyone. However, if you act on that temptation or purposely dwell on the thoughts, it's becomes yours.
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Old 06-17-2005, 09:59 AM   #47
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Yeah, Jesus said it. His quoting of the OT was "Do not commit adultery." The rest was all him.

I'm not sure what you mean by "hysteria." Please explain. It sounds like a very interesting question.


what i mean by hysteria is that, according to the OT, gay sex is a sin (debatable, but that's what the general consensus seems to be). also, another sin would be taking the name of the Lord's name in vain, or not keeping the Sabbath holy. everyday, i make little "oh my god" or "jesus christ!" comments. so does most everyone i know. i go running on sundays, i sometimes work, either way i'm not keeping it holy. so, i suppose i'm violating 2 Commandments right there. and so are most other people.

yet, we don't see constitutional amendments preventing people from swearing, nor do we see amendments requiring people not to work and to worship on Sundays. we do, however, see amendments preventing gay people from marrying, on a federal level, and all sorts of proposed amendments seeking to get books wtih any mention of homosexuality out of public libraries, preventing gay peopel from adopting kids, etc.

no one seems to care, at least politically, about the constant and continual violation of two of the 10 Commandments. yet, elections are won or lost about something that doesn't even make the Top 10 as far as sin is concerned, and we are seeing lots of direct, pointed legislation aimed at people who may or may not be in volation of something written in Leveticus.

i could point to other "hysterias" that surround sex ... the use of birth control, the premium placed upon a woman's virginity, the loads of sexual double standards, but the gay one leaps to mind most quickly.

(on a side note, i have done absolutely no work today ...)
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:03 AM   #48
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Originally posted by 80sU2isBest


It's not sinful to find people attractive. It's not even sinful to be sexually tempted. The devil tempts everyone. However, if you act on that temptation or purposely dwell on the thoughts, it's becomes yours.


so is "Achtung Baby" a sinful album?

it's obsessed with sex and lust and desire, and dwells on these things. though i would argue that it dwells in order to explore, and therefore understand, and therefore to achieve a kind of salvation. how can you be saved if you haven't sinned? can you not sin your way to salvation? the whole idea of Felix Culpa -- fortunate fall.

i suppose that's where i'm most sympathetic to Christianity. what i love is, that no matter what you've done or how bad you've been, you can be forgiven. (though i'm getting sick of these Born Again claims by politicians and journalists ... it's like declaring bankruptcy). it seems that humans were made to sin, made to fuck up, made to be bad. but if through being bad, through being sinful, we then learn what it is to be good and "of God" (as it were), then that makes sense to me. you cannot see the light if you've never strayed into the darkness.

that, to me, is what the Achtung-Zooropa-Pop trilogy is all about, and that's another point where 80s and i disagree: in my opinion, 90sU2isBest.

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Old 06-17-2005, 10:09 AM   #49
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What continues to worry me about never having sex before marriage is the problem of total sexual incompatibility. It does happen, you know. Obviously, it's not a good idea, for one's physical or spiritual health, to slut it up and have gazillions of casual sex partners. But when you're in a committed, monogamous, long-term relationship, and contemplating marriage...I don't know, for me, I think a sex life is important. I think you'd need to make sure you're happy to be sleeping with that person and no one else for the rest of your life, and that your partner is happy with that as well. You need to make sure that he or she is generous and fun and attentive as a lover, etc. etc...

Wouldn't it suck to get married and find out you're totally sexually incompatible? To me, I want to be at the altar with zero reservations. I want to say "I do" freely and happily and peacefully. I don't want there to be any unanswered questions, any mysteries, any surprises. And to my way of thinking, that really does honor a Christian ideal of marriage, in that marriage is supposed to be lasting and faithful.
Agreed .

My feelings-personally, I say that if somebody personally wishes to wait until they're married to have sex, that's entirely up to them. I don't care. They have their reasons-they should do what they feel comfortable doing.

I just don't understand the idea some people in this world have of condeming anybody who doesn't wait. Matter of fact, I think the decision of whether to have sex with your significant other before or after marriage is something that should remain solely between the couple, that should remain their decision and their decision alone. That choice shouldn't be any of my concern.

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Old 06-17-2005, 10:18 AM   #50
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Originally posted by Irvine511
what i mean by hysteria is that, according to the OT, gay sex is a sin (debatable, but that's what the general consensus seems to be). also, another sin would be taking the name of the Lord's name in vain, or not keeping the Sabbath holy. everyday, i make little "oh my god" or "jesus christ!" comments. so does most everyone i know. i go running on sundays, i sometimes work, either way i'm not keeping it holy. so, i suppose i'm violating 2 Commandments right there. and so are most other people.

yet, we don't see constitutional amendments preventing people from swearing, nor do we see amendments requiring people not to work and to worship on Sundays. we do, however, see amendments preventing gay people from marrying, on a federal level, and all sorts of proposed amendments seeking to get books wtih any mention of homosexuality out of public libraries, preventing gay peopel from adopting kids, etc.

no one seems to care, at least politically, about the constant and continual violation of two of the 10 Commandments. yet, elections are won or lost about something that doesn't even make the Top 10 as far as sin is concerned, and we are seeing lots of direct, pointed legislation aimed at people who may or may not be in volation of something written in Leveticus.

i could point to other "hysterias" that surround sex ... the use of birth control, the premium placed upon a woman's virginity, the loads of sexual double standards, but the gay one leaps to mind most quickly.

(on a side note, i have done absolutely no work today ...)
Well, the whole OT and Ten Commandments thing makes your question immensely more complicated, considering the theology of the new covenant and freedom from the Law, so I won't go that direction.

But as to what I think is the heart of your question: why do so many Christians put a larger emphasis on this particular sexual sin (homosexuality) as compared to others? The answer is a little bit ugly, and I think you are aware of why. In my opinion, it's a mixture of 1.) our culture's fascination with all things sexual 2.) long seeded prejudices against gays 3.) it is such a "hot issue" 4.) the fact that "political Christianity" has increased in power. That's what I can come up with on the top of my head. Honestly, I think #3 is the biggest reason of all. While #2 has probably gained the most noteriety, I think it mostly boils down to the fact that this is the topic "Christian" (fill in your own disclaimer) and "secular" (same here) society has decided to go to war on.

It's a mistake. I'll make no concessions to that. We (Christianity) are putting much more emphasis on it than we ever need to or ever should have.

You want to know the topic that Jesus talked about more than almost anything else? Money. Specifically, greed. Yet there aren't any legislations regarding greed on the agenda. Our culture is consumed by greed and it is a much bigger problem for our society than anything sexual. Much, much bigger.

Again, it's a mistake. But it's become a such a controversial point and gained so much steam that it's probably not going to go away anytime soon, unfortunately. And as a minister, frankly, I'm really getting tired of talking about it.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:24 AM   #51
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i suppose that's where i'm most sympathetic to Christianity. what i love is, that no matter what you've done or how bad you've been, you can be forgiven. (though i'm getting sick of these Born Again claims by politicians and journalists ... it's like declaring bankruptcy). it seems that humans were made to sin, made to fuck up, made to be bad. but if through being bad, through being sinful, we then learn what it is to be good and "of God" (as it were), then that makes sense to me. you cannot see the light if you've never strayed into the darkness.
Oh, Irvine. That's profound on so many levels. You're so close to a realization that so many Christians I know will never understand. I hate message boards.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:36 AM   #52
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Well, the whole OT and Ten Commandments thing makes your question immensely more complicated, considering the theology of the new covenant and freedom from the Law, so I won't go that direction.

But as to what I think is the heart of your question: why do so many Christians put a larger emphasis on this particular sexual sin (homosexuality) as compared to others? The answer is a little bit ugly, and I think you are aware of why. In my opinion, it's a mixture of 1.) our culture's fascination with all things sexual 2.) long seeded prejudices against gays 3.) it is such a "hot issue" 4.) the fact that "political Christianity" has increased in power. That's what I can come up with on the top of my head. Honestly, I think #3 is the biggest reason of all. While #2 has probably gained the most noteriety, I think it mostly boils down to the fact that this is the topic "Christian" (fill in your own disclaimer) and "secular" (same here) society has decided to go to war on.

It's a mistake. I'll make no concessions to that. We (Christianity) are putting much more emphasis on it than we ever need to or ever should have.

You want to know the topic that Jesus talked about more than almost anything else? Money. Specifically, greed. Yet there aren't any legislations regarding greed on the agenda. Our culture is consumed by greed and it is a much bigger problem for our society than anything sexual. Much, much bigger.

Again, it's a mistake. But it's become a such a controversial point and gained so much steam that it's probably not going to go away anytime soon, unfortunately. And as a minister, frankly, I'm really getting tired of talking about it.


great, informative post. i thank you very much.

i do think homosexuality is fixated upon, but i think sexuality in general is a church preoccupation -- specifically, the virgin/whore dichotomy that many woman are forced into. you're either a good girl (Mary) or a bad girl (Jezebel, or whomever). if you have sex, you're bad; if you're a virgin, you're good. that might be due more to cultural influences than actual biblical passages, especially in Catholic countries that tend to venerate Mary more than other denominations of Christianity.

it's just something that Bono said recently that i think makes sense. why is sex such a preoccupation, and not greed? we call Britney Spears a tramp for making money via sex, but we venerate those on Wall Street who make money everytime a company lays off a few thousand workers, cuts its costs, and increases it's stock market value.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:37 AM   #53
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Originally posted by Irvine511

so is "Achtung Baby" a sinful album?

it's obsessed with sex and lust and desire, and dwells on these things. though i would argue that it dwells in order to explore, and therefore understand, and therefore to achieve a kind of salvation.
I don't know if Achtung Baby is "sinful" or not. I know I don't like it - mainly because I don't like songs about sex. I think songs can be written that deal with sexual temptation and not be "sinful". However, if Bono were advocating/condoning letting sexual temptation turn into action or sexual fantasy, in my opinion, it would be sin.

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how can you be saved if you haven't sinned? can you not sin your way to salvation? the whole idea of Felix Culpa -- fortunate fall.
Exactly right, you must have sinned to be "saved". If you were perfect, you wouldn't need Jesus.

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
i suppose that's where i'm most sympathetic to Christianity. what i love is, that no matter what you've done or how bad you've been, you can be forgiven.
It's excellent.

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
(it seems that humans were made to sin, made to fuck up, made to be bad.
God didn't intend that anyone sin, or be bad. But man has a free will.

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Originally posted by Irvine511
but if through being bad, through being sinful, we then learn what it is to be good and "of God" (as it were), then that makes sense to me. you cannot see the light if you've never strayed into the darkness.
Once we learn what is right and wrong, we are not given license to continue sinning. And contrary to what some Christians seem to believe, once you are saved, you are not given license to just go do wrong simply because you'll know you are forgiven. In fact the Bible says "Should we continue in sin, so that grace may abound? Heaven forbid!"

The Old Testament law was actually the vehicle God used to show the people how sinful they are. Paul called it "the schoolmaster". By God setting down his perfect, holy standards, people saw that they were sinful and could never possibly live up to those standards. Once they saw that, they would realize they couldn't ever be "good enough" and therefore would see the need for a savior, someone to take those sins away. When Christ came on to the scene, he fulfilled that.

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that, to me, is what the Achtung-Zooropa-Pop trilogy is all about, and that's another point where 80s and i disagree: in my opinion, 90sU2isBest.

I guess I should change my name to reflect my new preference:

2KU2isBest
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:43 AM   #54
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Oh, Irvine. That's profound on so many levels. You're so close to a realization that so many Christians I know will never understand. I hate message boards.


i think that's what the Achtung trilogy is all about! that's why i adore that album so much (aside from the thrilling music, and the fact that my life is improved by the simple existence of "one").

to me, it seems like the Bible is less of a rule book, and perhaps more of a historical text and perhaps, through the example of Jesus, a sort of haigography of someone who we should all try and emulate.

what that doesn't mean is that we walk through our lives constantly asking WWJD when it comes to, say, drinking in high school or having a one night stand. my instinct would be to try and make the best decisions you can, but be aware of your humanness, your fallability, your weaknesses, your shortcomings, the fact that, yes, sometimes you wake up next to a stranger and you feel emptiness. but it is that feeling of emptiness that should, in the long run, lead you back to a feeling of fulfillment. because you've felt pain, you can know joy. because you haven't lead an uptight existence trying to follow biblical instructions down to the very letter, you've LIVED enough, and been human enough, for you to return to those passages and instead of receiving them as instructions or knowledge, you receive them as wisdom. they are now lived-in.

this is not to say: drink! fuck! do drugs! get in fights! but it is to say, trust yourself! believe in yourself! try to do the right thing! don't beat yourself up too much if you fail (gosh, Christianity should give you forgiveness to fail .... i suppose what i dislike most is the idea that we are born bad, and we must then live a whitewashed existence to make up for that ... i'd like to think that we are born with the capacity to fail and to be bad, and we will do both, and we *should* sin, and more importantly, we should learn from sin).

most of all, learn from your mistakes. and do better next time. and pass on what you've learned to others. but know that they have to fall in order to be saved, just like you did.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:43 AM   #55
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And as a minister, frankly, I'm really getting tired of talking about it.
I didn't word that correctly. If people have honest questions about the issue, I'm more than happy to discuss it, such as in this thread. I'm just tired of it getting so much more prominence in our churches than the "bigger issues" in this world. When it comes to talking about the things of God, there are other topics that are much more interesting.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:48 AM   #56
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Exactly right, you must have sinned to be "saved". If you were perfect, you wouldn't need Jesus.


[...]

God didn't intend that anyone sin, or be bad. But man has a free will.


I guess I should change my name to reflect my new preference:

2KU2isBest


i see a huge contradiction in the first two lines.

i think God sets us up to sin. i think there's value in sin, IF sin is measured by regret and gained knowledge.

i'm a big fan of post-2000 U2 as well. though i find the last two albums -- while thrilling, and filled with almost astonishing craftmanship -- a bit bloodless, as opposed to the guts on Achtung Baby.


why don't you like songs about sex? i find "so cruel" and "mysterious ways" to be very sexual, but in a very mature, almost intellectual way. there's no "i'm gonna fuck you like an animal" lines on it ... but there are loads of lines that might come from the crotch, but they've gone through the head.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:57 AM   #57
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Exactly right, you must have sinned to be "saved". If you were perfect, you wouldn't need Jesus.
[...]
God didn't intend that anyone sin, or be bad. But man has a free will.
Quote:


i see a huge contradiction here.

i think God sets us up to sin. i think there's value in sin, IF sin is measured by regret and gained knowledge.



I don't see any contradiction in my statements at all.

It was not God's intention for people to sin, but once they did, they were lost, because the perfect nature of God makes it impossible for him to abide in the presence of sin. Christ is the only answer, because he bridges the gap between sinful man and perfect God. He doesn't do that by compromising God's standards; he does that by lifting people up to God's standard; cleansing people of their sin and giving them new perfect spirits. Spiritually speaking, every redeemed person is perfect. Remember my use of the term "spiritually"; I am talking about perfect spirit, not perfect flesh.

The Bible says that God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to salvation thorugh Christ. If God is not willing that any should persih, then God is not willing that any should sin, since it is sin that separates people from God and causes them to "perish" in the first place.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:59 AM   #58
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why don't you like songs about sex? i find "so cruel" and "mysterious ways" to be very sexual, but in a very mature, almost intellectual way. there's no "i'm gonna fuck you like an animal" lines on it ... but there are loads of lines that might come from the crotch, but they've gone through the head.
I just don't like `em. But I don't see "mysterious ways" as sexual at all.
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Old 06-17-2005, 11:00 AM   #59
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i think that's what the Achtung trilogy is all about! that's why i adore that album so much (aside from the thrilling music, and the fact that my life is improved by the simple existence of "one").

to me, it seems like the Bible is less of a rule book, and perhaps more of a historical text and perhaps, through the example of Jesus, a sort of haigography of someone who we should all try and emulate.

what that doesn't mean is that we walk through our lives constantly asking WWJD when it comes to, say, drinking in high school or having a one night stand. my instinct would be to try and make the best decisions you can, but be aware of your humanness, your fallability, your weaknesses, your shortcomings, the fact that, yes, sometimes you wake up next to a stranger and you feel emptiness. but it is that feeling of emptiness that should, in the long run, lead you back to a feeling of fulfillment. because you've felt pain, you can know joy. because you haven't lead an uptight existence trying to follow biblical instructions down to the very letter, you've LIVED enough, and been human enough, for you to return to those passages and instead of receiving them as instructions or knowledge, you receive them as wisdom. they are now lived-in.

this is not to say: drink! fuck! do drugs! get in fights! but it is to say, trust yourself! believe in yourself! try to do the right thing! don't beat yourself up too much if you fail (gosh, Christianity should give you forgiveness to fail .... i suppose what i dislike most is the idea that we are born bad, and we must then live a whitewashed existence to make up for that ... i'd like to think that we are born with the capacity to fail and to be bad, and we will do both, and we *should* sin, and more importantly, we should learn from sin).

most of all, learn from your mistakes. and do better next time. and pass on what you've learned to others. but know that they have to fall in order to be saved, just like you did.
(I'm not getting any work done today, either. So I'll briefly respond with what I can. Again, I hate message boards.)

One of the things about being in ministry that breaks my heart is the inability of people to accept grace. Through Jesus, God has poured out such immeasurable and astounding love, and all throughout my church I see people who simply can't understand that. I feel like I'm watching a starving man stumble around for nourishment, when he could be fed beyond his wildest dreams if he would just open his eyes to the feast in front of him. It's maddening and frustrating. Then I remember how much I refuse grace in my own life, and I realize we're all messed up in our own ways.

Christianity is not about rules and religion. It's such a simple idea that is so hard to understand. It's about a relationship with the God who loves you more than you could ever comprehend. A God who's willing to look past your mistakes and see the beauty inside. And so many Christians I know are running around in shackles, scared that they are going to break the rules and God isn't going to like them anymore. God loves you. He has chosen to love you. And that love is not based on who you are, but who He is. That's what grace is all about.

Where's sin in all of this? Making a muck of things, really. Sin pulls us away from God, damaging that relationship and hindering us from the love He so desperately wants to give us. God hates to see how sin hurts us, scars us, and stops us from being what He intended. But sin isn't going to change the way God feels about us. He'll love us, sin great or small. He'll accept us, no matter what we've done or will do in the future.

That's the difference Jesus makes. What we do with Him and who He is makes us a Christian, and bridges that gap between us and God.

Holy crap. Sorry about that. Don't mean to preach, just can't help it sometimes. I guess you hit a nerve.
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Old 06-17-2005, 11:09 AM   #60
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80s:

then we'll have to agree to disagree.

and the source of that comes from your literal interpretation of the Bible, and the fact that i cannot view it as anything more than allegory.

we might be able to agree that it is "truth" -- i'm still a passionate agnostic, but still very open minded -- but i doubt we'll ever agree on what is "fact."
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