Dispatches from the Creation Wars

More D. James Kennedy Nonsense

So I’m flipping the channels and come across a D. James Kennedy sermon, which is always good for a laugh or two. The sermon was about tolerance of intolerance and it included all the typical martyr-mongering we hear from the religious right about how persecuted they are because they don’t get to impose their will on others the way they used to be able to (which is a bit like King George claiming to be persecuted after the American revolution). By my favorite part was where he actually claimed that what is happening to Christians in America is just like the Holocaust. No, I’m not making that up.

He actually said that, and he said that he had spoken to a holocaust survivor at his first church service who agreed with him. And he provided a step by step slippery slope argument. He said first they laughed at the Jews, they then ridiculed them, then they censored them, then they imprisoned them, then they killed them. And of course, he said, we’re on the same path now. I’ll take “how the hell does anyone say something that stupid with a straight face” for $1000, Alex.

For crying out loud, Christians have controlled our political system for almost our entire history. Aside from a few Jews here and there, can you name a non-Christian in our government? I can name one (Judge Posner). The fact that we won’t let Christians force others to say prayers they don’t believe in while in school is not persecution, it’s liberty. The fact that we will no longer let Christians pass laws that throw people in prison for daring to be gay is not persecution, it’s liberty. The fact that you can’t tell the difference speaks volumes.

If you’re laughed at, it’s because you contually make such idiotic arguments that deserve to be laughed at. This is exactly the kind of demagoguery that Dick Armey was speaking of, stupid pablum that is easy for the intellectually lazy and the ignorant. No one who is not an idiot or a liar would see the anti-gay rhetoric that flows so casually from the religious right as being “standing up for truth”, yet see any reaction to that rhetoric as proof that Christians are about to be rounded up and thrown into the ovens. This is absurdity on a transcendental level. It’s the same kind of rank stupidity that fuels the “war on Christmas” nonsense.

Comments

  1. #1 tacitus
    October 2, 2006

    FYI: Kennedy’s less insane, but more dangerous partner-in-crime, James Dobson, was declaring victory on his radio show this morning:

    http://www.focusaction.org/press/A000000219.cfm

    “We are pleased that the children of California have been spared the effects of AB 606 and 1056 – two bills that would have required gay and lesbian propaganda to be included in the curricula of all public schools. Gov. Schwarzenegger has heard the outcry of countless parents who refuse to have their children subjected to teaching that contradicts their deeply held religious beliefs.

    “By vetoing these bills, Gov. Schwarzenegger has put parents, children and teachers – and their freedom of speech and religion — ahead of the demands of homosexuals and their allies in the state Legislature, who tried to impose their agenda on public education. Today, Californians who spoke out on this issue have once again acted to protect and defend the family and the values on which it is based.”

    Looks like Schwarzenegger capitulated to the pressure.

  2. #2 Roger
    October 2, 2006

    James Kennedy is a presbyterian. It used to be said that in settling the midwest the presbyterians would start a church and a school – not necessarily in that order. Unfortunately Kennedy, even with a doctoral degree, seems to have left out the idea of schooling as teaching the truth. I thank God that while both Kennedy and I are presbyterian we are not in the same denomination. I do have to admit that my denomination also includes people who are as idiotic, but… I don’t have to live with him.

  3. #3 Jon Rowe
    October 2, 2006

    The worst part of the sermon was that Kennedy sounded like he claimed the Holocaust was done “all in the name of tolerance.” He probably didn’t mean it that way; but that’s the way his words were put together.

    Every year he recycles these sermons, often broadcasting the same sermon multiple times a year.

    He is going to do another “Christian Nation” one next week. I guess that’s more fodder for my blog.

  4. #4 Troy Britain
    October 2, 2006

    tacitus: Looks like Schwarzenegger capitulated to the pressure.

    That’s what he does. He starts with big talk and then collapse like a house of cards if he meets any real resistance (from the left or right).

    And he is a big time flip-flopper. For example depending on who he’s talking to he is either for or against working to stem illegal immigration.

    He’s a “girlyman”.

  5. #5 mark
    October 2, 2006

    Kennedy sounded like he claimed the Holocaust was done “all in the name of tolerance.”

    Which comes as no surprise, because those of his ilk are very much against tolerance, and are not shy about saying so.

  6. #6 Miguelito
    October 2, 2006

    It’s just like how the Jews persecuted Germans before WWII.

  7. #7 Will E.
    October 2, 2006

    “…how persecuted they are because they don’t get to impose their will on others…”

    That’s the heart of it, right there. Perfect. Send that line to Stephen Colbert! “How dare you deny me my right to tell you what to do!”

  8. #8 Coin
    October 2, 2006

    Looks like Schwarzenegger capitulated to the pressure.

    Wow. As far as I remember those were actually fairly popular bills, at least the one requiring the state dept of education to adopt an anti-discrimination policy. I think that this veto would wind up creating a real problem for Schwarzenegger if his opponent this November were anyone in the whole world except Phil Angelides.

  9. #9 kemibe
    October 2, 2006

    “…can you name a non-Christian in our government?”

    Mormons are Christians, I guess, but a lot of fundagelicals claim that Mormonism is a cult, so what about Harry Reid?

  10. #10 Bill Jarrell
    October 2, 2006

    Kennedy has reconstructionist leanings. He has not identified himself as such, but he keeps company with George Grant and Gary DeMar. Grant was once closely involved with Coral Ridge Ministries. R.J. Rushdoony was once a guest on his show. Another possible indicator of reconstructionist leanings is Kennedy’s eschatology. He’s an amillenialist. He doens’t believe in the “Left Behind” rapture scenario, which reconstructionists reject. While premillenial dispensationalism is inherently pessimistic, Kennedy’s amillenialism leaves room for the triumphialist possiblity that the social order can be Christianized.

  11. #11 David Heddle
    October 2, 2006

    Bill Jarrell,

    Actually it’s postmillennialism, not amillennialism, that is the eschatology of choice for reconstructionists. While dispensational premillennialists are pessimistic and postmillennialists are optimistic, amillennialists are rather catastrophic: they believe that history will simply end (with Christ’s return) with no gradual transition into either apostatsy (premil) or a church-victorious evangelized world (postmil).

    On the other hand, not all postmillennialists are reconstructionists.

  12. #12 GH
    October 2, 2006

    teaching that contradicts their deeply held religious beliefs

    This makes you want to go yeah right. The deeply held beliefs of a 7th grader who hasn’t been exposed to anything else can hardly be called a ‘belief’ at all.

  13. #13 Matthew
    October 2, 2006

    I remember after Bush won the election in 04, Kennedy was interviewed in all of the post-election “Bush’s mandate” nonsense about how they expected to be compensated for helpin him when the election by tackling the issues that they wanted. When asked what he thought about people who felt differently his simple response was “I don’t care”. It seems that two years later he hasn’t made any leeway even with that mandate; heck now they are holocaust victims.

  14. #14 Bill Jarrell
    October 3, 2006

    David Heddle,

    I seem to remember reading somewhere that Kennedy was an amillennialist. But it may not be accurate and I will stand corrected if shown otherwise. I am aware that reconstructionists are postmillenialist. But some forms of amillenialism leave room for the possibility of Christian triumphialism. As I understand amillennialism Christ will return suddenly regardless of the state of the world. The amillennialist second-coming will be in the “best of times, worst of times.” A conquoring church may not be the precondition for Christ’s return, as in postmillenialism, but it doesn’t necessarily exclude the possibility of church conquest the way premillenialism often does.

  15. #15 Phobos
    October 3, 2006

    DJKennedy never ceases to amaze when it comes to twisting an idea to suit his theology. What is sad is how so many people listen to him.

  16. #16 Gary DeArment
    May 25, 2007

    Rather than taking poor and inaccurate potshots at someone like Dr. Kennedy an honest argument would include ones own world and life view. Under the scrutiny of research you will discover that what you answer about the big 4 questions and how willing and consistent you are to live by your presuppositions will determine whether or not you wish to deal with the likes of someone like Dr. Kennedy. He would not only be able to tell you what he belives but would be able to show you adequate and aaccurate detailed research to prove what he belives as well as be willing to show you he lives by what he preaches. Is God the Creator and did He show Himself in Christ? If not then whatever else you talk aabout is fluff. Get to the central argument and admit that the only way all your other answers will become clear is by whether you are willing to be scientific and enter by faith. G.DeArment

  17. #17 DuWayne
    May 25, 2007

    Gary DeArment –

    While I have little doubt, as to the sincerity of Kennedy’s beliefs, he could not and would not be able to prove what he believes, with adequate evidence. I do not believe that Christians are facing a holocaust, that is patently absurd. Here in fact, you have a number of people who are not Christians, many of whom have great animosity for Christianity and theism in general. Yet I have no doubt that if anyone suggested outlawing Christianity, even restricting the speech of Christians, you would find many voracious defenders of rights of people of faith – in fact many commentors here and epecialy Ed himself have been so voracious.

    In fact, I would prefer that Kennedy not actually believe such claptrap, but having listened to enough of his sermons, I have concluded that he most certainly does. Just as he, sadly in the opinion of this Christian, believes that this would be a better country, if we restricted the rights of others – such as women, gays and non-Christians. I have no doubt he believes this is right, just and true. That he believes he is right, doesn’t mean he is.

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