Friday, August 29, 2008

Does Sarah Palin Speak in Tongues?

9-10-08: For a follow-up to this post, see "Does Sarah Palin Have a 'Pipeline' to God?"

We know she is an Alaskan reformer. We know she is pro-life. We know she was a beauty queen and a basketball star. We know she eats moose burgers. But does Sarah Palin speak in tongues?

According to some reports, Palin attends church at the Juneau Christian Center, a congregation affiliated with the Assembly of God, the largest Pentecostal denomination in the world. Pentecostals are evangelicals who believe in a doctrine called the “baptism of the Holy Spirit,” an intense spiritual encounter with God that often results in unintelligible utterances commonly known as “speaking in tongues.”

They are also distinguished by their emphasis on faith healing, their belief in the rapture (the sudden return of Jesus Christ in the air to take all true believers to heaven), and their emotional, hand-waving style of Christian worship. Disgraced televangelists Jimmy Swaggart and Jim Bakker are Pentecostals. Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis were raised in the denomination.

Palin was born a Catholic, but her parents abandoned their commitment to Rome when she was young and began attending evangelical churches. She appears to have spent most of her childhood at the Wasilla Assembly of God Church. Her youth pastor, Mike Boatsman, formerly served as the Alaskan Superintendent of the Assembly of God Church. Earlier this year, at a gathering of Alaskan members of the denomination, Boatsman and Mike Rose, the pastor of the Juneau Christian Center, laid hands on Palin (a Christian symbol of consecration) and prayed for her and the state of Alaska.

Palin is not the first Pentecostal politician to gain national attention. James Watt, the Secretary of the Interior under Ronald Reagan, was a member of an Assembly of God Church. Like most Pentecostals, Watt shunned certain forms of popular entertainment as being too worldly. In 1983, he banned the Beach Boys from playing a Fourth of July concert on the National Mall because, as he said, they drew an “undesirable element”

John Ashcroft, George W. Bush’s Attorney General and the controversial enforcer of the Patriot Act, was the son of an Assembly of God minister and a Pentecostal clergyman himself. In addition to a distinguished career in politics, Ashcroft was a gospel song writer. He also used Crisco cooking oil to anoint himself before serving his two terms as Missouri governor.

The Beach Boys and Crisco aside, Pentecostal politicians usually shy away from talking about religious practices such as the “baptism of the holy spirit” or “speaking in tongues.” Ashcroft the politician seldom called attention to these important dimensions of his faith.

We can expect the same from Palin. She will be a crusader for pro-life causes and traditional marriage, but will avoid speaking about some of the religious practices of her upbringing that some mainstream Americans—even many mainstream evangelicals-- may consider strange. (In this sense her approach will be similar to the way Mitt Romney refused to talk about the intricacies of his Mormon faith). In fact, in an interview with Time, Palin called herself a “Bible-believing Christian” who attends a “non-denominational Bible Church.” She has yet to call herself a “Pentecostal.”

Palin is a serious evangelical who will rally John McCain’s conservative base, but don’t expect a tongues-speaking Holy Ghost revival to break out next week in Minneapolis.

60 comments:

Anonymous said...
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Russ said...

When Ashcroft was appointed, I remember hearing a purported expert on NPR explain what a "pentecostalist" was. She seemed to know they were different than fundamentalists, but wasn't quite sure how, except that they were more noisy.

Catalyst said...

Well, if you're concerned about her balance, would you also be concerned about Peter and the other apostles, including Paul being in a position of leadership? Or, apparently, the entire Corinthian church?

If speaking in a language you haven't learned is called a "gift of the Holy Spirit," then how can we as Christians reject someone when they receive that gift from God? If I remember correctly, the Jewish leadership remarked that the apostles were "unschooled, ordinary men who had been with Jesus." That's all I can hope for.

Anonymous said...
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Catalyst said...

Wow, anonymous. I guess I'm so amazed at some folks ignorance and fear of the unknown. Assemblies of God is an established Pentecostal CHRISTIAN denomination. As per George Barna, "A decade ago, three out of ten adults claimed to be charismatic or Pentecostal Christians. Today, 36% of Americans accept that designation. That corresponds to approximately 80 million adults. (For the Barna survey, this included people who said they were a charismatic or Pentecostal Christian, that they had been "filled with the Holy Spirit" and who said they believe that "the charismatic gifts, such as tongues and healing, are still valid and active today.")

Charismatics are found throughout the fabric of American Christianity. Although just 8% of the population is evangelical, half of evangelical adults (49%) fit the charismatic definition. A slight majority of all born again Christians (51%) is charismatic. Nearly half of all adults who attend a Protestant church (46%) are charismatic." See http://www.barna.org/FlexPage.aspx?Page=BarnaUpdateNarrow&BarnaUpdateID=287

So you're accusing 80,000,000 people in the U.S. of cultic tendencies??? By the way, I used to attend an AG church, and I can vouch for the fact that we didn't worship emotions or "roll around on the floor babbling gibberish." Perhaps you know something about Sarah Palin's church that the rest of the U.S. doesn't? If not, I'd recommend you not expose your ignorance and keep your comments to yourself.

Anonymous said...

The question has Not been answered.

Does she SPEAK IN TONGUES?
Has she manifested Power From On High?
Does she do it on a daily basis?

Catalyst said...

Anonymous, you fail to answer the question of why that's relevant, how it will positively or negatively affect her ability to make decisions and govern. I'd much rather have a Pentecostal Christian in office than an atheist, a secular humanist, a hypocritical Christian, or a radical Muslim. Proper fear of God keeps a person humble and clarifies judgment.

Anonymous said...

Catalyst you have a wonderful way with words!
God bless you!

p.s. I'm not that other guy!

Russ said...

Looks like she's probably not actually a Pentecostal, and only attends the Juneau Christian Center when she's in that area. Her main church sounds pretty vanilla non-denominational evangelical.

http://www.newsweek.com/id/156306/page/1

Anonymous said...

As long as she doesn't wear her experience as a badge of superiority it shouldn't be an issue. I'd rather a "pentecostal" with principle than a president who couldn't keep his pants zipped as we have had in the past. I believe this is a great ticket.

Anonymous said...

The last thing we need is for someone to decide that the unintelligible babbling of a zealot translates into "push the button" or "attack the Muslims" or "this is the rapture".

The way that people are responding to her as a beacon of Christianity, it's frightening to think that 1/10 adults (or even more) might be convinced to follow her as a neo-Joan of Arc.

H. Sapiens said...

My question is, has Sarah had the gift of tongues. If she has, why doesn't she profess it to the world? And if she has not, doesn't that call into question the validity of her Pentecostal faith?

H. Sapiens said...
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Catalyst said...

Anonymous said, "The last thing we need is for someone to decide that the unintelligible babbling of a zealot translates into "push the button" or 'attack the Muslims' or 'this is the rapture.'"

I'm not clear exactly what you mean, or if by the "unintelligible babbling of a zealot" that you are referring to yourself or someone else. Please don't make this blog a place where you stereotype people and try to throw Sarah Palin into that mold. You obviously have never attended a balanced Charismatic or Pentecostal church, and you speak only from your ignorance. It shows. Kindly refrain from your bigotry.

As for h. sapiens comment, I wonder why is it necessary for Sarah Palin to tell the world if she has ever spoken in a language she's never learned. IT JUST AIN'T RELEVANT! It would be similar to her proclaiming if she's ever prayed for a sick person in the hospital; contributed to the collection at church; taught Sunday School; or a myriad of other things you might do as a Christian that are also associated with spiritual gifts.

I would hope that the press wouldn't make the particular biblical practices of candidates' denominations a key area of their reporting. If those practices are illegal (such as polygamy), or if someone is a practicing hypocrite, then those things deserve more scrutiny. I too am curious about this particular question, but if it influences your vote, I think you're focusing on the wrong things.

Anonymous said...

I think the old adage, "Don't knock it until you try it", would apply to this situation. People seem to have big (unfounded) ideas about 'tongue talkers' and yet..know nothing about it. "Papa said it ain't right, so I say it's not right". Thank God people seek the face of God and choose their own paths - even if it goes against their traditional, heritage type belief.
Don't label all pentecostals as 'fakes'. That's like saying all men are abusers and all women are naggers. It's just not so.

Offended Pentecostal said...

This is so funny. You described tongues as, "unintelligible utterances". That is the perfect description of Barack Obama trying to talk without a teleprompter or prepared remarks.

John Fea said...

Dear Offended Pentecostal,

First of all, I am sorry that you are offended by my post. Second, perhaps you can enlighten us. If "unintelligible utterances" is not an accurate description of tongues speaking, then what exactly are tongues speakers saying from the perspective of an outside listener?

Thanks for posting!

us female said...

It amazes me that people have forgotten what America is all about. We have freedom to choose what religion we want to be a part of. We are not forced into any certain one. We are all created differently, with a varity of personalities. I believe that is why we have so many different denominations to choose from. What is comfortable for me, may not be for others...and so on. Some people are going to be very surprised when they get to heaven and see that many different religions are all there togehter, and isn't that our goal! Christians need to be winning the world for Jesus, not nit picking how others want to worship. The world doesn't have to attack christians, they (some) attack each other!
I for one want a President and Vice President who have morals and values, and all the better that they are christian morals and values!
Her level of Spirituality is not what we are supposed to be voting on. Her ability to be vice president of our country is what is important! I am reminded of a saying from the bible, " My people parrish for lack of knowledge." You cannot insult something you do not understand.
My question is this, Would it be a bad thing to have a person in office that believes in the bible?, Who belives right is right and wrong is wrong?, Who believes she has to answer to a higher power(God), and who would pray for this country and its well being and it's citizens of all faiths? Would all that be so bad, if that is what she is being accused of?
I certainly understand that some religious practices may scare others, but that doesn't mean they are wrong. If someone is faking, or pretending...they will answer for it one day; so I will leave those judgements to God!
And yes, I am a woman who believes in God, has been raised Assembly of God, am a bussiness owner, wife, and mother, and a Proud citizen of the United States!

Catalyst said...

To John Fea, I appreciate the honest question. Let me attempt an honest answer. According to the Bible, an "unknown tongue" is an unknown language. The first time the ability to speak in an unknown language is displayed in the Bible is on the day of Pentecost in Acts chapter 2. In this account, the apostles were filled with God's Holy Spirit and given the ability to speak in numerous languages understood by Jewish pilgrims in Jerusalem there to celebrate the Jewish feast of weeks. Since they came from all over the region, they had a wide variety of native languages.

Elsewhere in Acts (ch. 10, 19), believers received this gift and no record is given of the languages being understood.

In I Corinthians chapters 12-14, the apostle Paul gives a long explanation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit and their proper operation in the church. In ch. 14, he makes it clear that if there isn't someone in the church who can interpret the language spoken by the person speaking in a tongue (an unlearned language), then the person with the language gift should stay silent.

In essence, God's Holy Spirit gives out this language gift, but it requires someone else in the church to interpret (another gift) in order for it to edify (build up) the church.

In an orderly Charismatic or Pentecostal church, there shouldn't be "unintelligible utterances," since they should all be interpreted. Unfortunately, there are some churches which don't follow Paul the Apostle's advice to provide an interpreter. Consequently, they end up being confusing and disorderly to those unfamiliar with this style of worship (and even to some that are).

Of course, that gives a bad impression to visitors and stains the reputation of Charismatic and Pentecostal churches in general in many peoples' minds. So something that was intended to be a blessing by God ends up a negative when misused by those ignorant of biblical worship.

John Fea said...

Catalyst: Thanks for the clarification. I think you are correct to suggest that there may be a disconnect between "orderly" tongues speaking (it seems that this is not an oxymoron) and the kind of disorderly practice of the gifts that many associate with pentecostals.

Anonymous said...

First of all she is a pure human being with pure character and not afraid of standing for ethics and moral standards that once our presidents were known and famouse for, but now we regard hope as whatever you want I am the answer junk. Even Jesus did not promise whatever you want I give you as his message. He showed the way that he belived and ivited us to find our freedom and hope in what He called the Truth not far left no one can tell me what to do, I want to make my own freedom playing with what destroys me self generated no foundation lies. Far left has no etics and moral based standard then since when they became interested in the diffrence between the wrong and right. First learn the right before you know what is wrong. Lets get back to our roots and getaway with this junks called progressive doctrine. This is rather called Regressive doctrine being misspled!

Jon Garrison said...

Catalyst,
just a quick note to say, wonderful!!
Your answers are spot on!
People too often lump us with those who give truly balanced pentecostals a bad name. I'm a pentecostal preacher and I constantly am having to defend the faith so to speak.

People think that's all we do! The truth is, the baptism of the Spirit is a small part being pentecostal (though an important one). The main difference from other protestant denominations is our doctrine of holiness.

When people are told that the bible says things like "repent or perish" they start labeling us "toungue talking snake handlers" So they can go back to feeling comfortable in their sin.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

It would be hilarious, if it weren't so frightening...
the way pig-ignorant xians wave their fantasy lord as he were a flag, never quite grasping the fact that many, if not most, atheists got there by having a more complete knowledge and understanding of religion than that of those mired in the bog of theism.

Sadly, you put your allegiance to that bog ahead of your allegiance to your country and to the only world that you will be in. We atheists frighten you so, because we are the bogies that your shepherds threaten you with. Wake up, shake yourselves loose from your chains. Open your eyes to SEE THE LIGHT. That which you keep your faith in, is a lie. The pipe-dream of "heaven" is the carrot, the imaginary "hell" the stick, and you've allowed yourselves to be led by the nose, allowed others to convince you not to think. Yet, you fear atheists above all else, to your detriment.

"catalyst" says "I'm so amazed at some folks ignorance and fear of the unknown", while displaying both. "catalyst" also states, "I'd much rather have a Pentecostal Christian in office than an atheist, a secular humanist, a hypocritical Christian, or a radical Muslim." Such blind, unthinking fear can ONLY be based upon sheer ignorance.

As an atheist, I have found that most xians haven't a clue what the label means in the first place, and that it confuses them, once they've gotten to know me...because it turns out that atheists aren't the "devils" that they've been taught that we are. Atheism is not a religion, nor do atheists have a "faith". I do highly recommend that you read The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins for yourselves...but try to do so without the kneejerk response you'll nearly certainly have.

Get this: I was raised Southern Baptist. I recognized the falseness of religion well before my tenth birthday, without external guidance (thunk it for myself, see?) and can proudly state that I've been an atheist for between thirty-five and forty years now. I've also learned far more about the history of xianity specifically, and religion in general, than most of you will ever know.

Yes, I DO have the answer. It's 42. Bye now.

Anonymous said...

Praise God .. I hope she does speak in tongues .. and not the ones we are used to hearing politicians speak in. It does not matter what you think about her faith, it is her faith. I give her credit for standing up for what she believes in.

Pentecostals by the way do not all roll on the floor babbling gibberish. Anonymous needs to do some research. She has more experience then the Democratic nominee. I think she will do great. Besides, maybe it is time for someone to be in the Whitehouse that does not know all the rules. The guys with the experience have not been doing well .. that is for sure.

Go Sarah!

noxhz said...

Praise God .. I hope she does speak in tongues .. and not the ones we are used to hearing politicians speak in. It does not matter what you think about her faith, it is her faith. I give her credit for standing up for what she believes in.

Pentecostals by the way do not all roll on the floor babbling gibberish. Anonymous needs to do some research. She has more experience then the Democratic nominee. I think she will do great. Besides, maybe it is time for someone to be in the Whitehouse that does not know all the rules. The guys with the experience have not been doing well .. that is for sure.

Go Sarah!

Rustin B said...
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Anonymous said...

There is a disconnect between Christians (or whatever else you want to call yourself) and the teachings of Christ. I've seen nothing but arguments here about how "you are right" and the rest of the world is "wrong." You really don't get it. Instead of attempting to force feed your convictions and religious beliefs down everyone's throats, try "sharing" it as Jesus did. I'm a Born Again Christian and I am disgusted with the behavior of so many like some here sho claim to be saved too. Jesus came to do away with the old and preached nothing but acceptance (not tolerance), love (not indifference), and forgiveness (not hate).

You really should be ashamed for doing our Lord such a disservice.

John Fea said...

I have deleted several posts that have been either mean-spirited or fail to do anything beyond attacking me or other posters. I will continue to do this if posters cannot remain civil and respectful to one another. Thanks.

Lin said...

Hurray for America! Where else could we have this kind of dialog?

"brought to you by our judeo christian roots"

believer said...

To anonymous,

After seeing Sarah Palin last night, I am convinced she is the right person for the vice-presidency along with John McCain for president.

In response to your being an atheist: God gives us free will, which allows you not the believe in HIM. Just one thing to consider: If you are right and there is no God, when you die or this world is over, you have lost nothing. If you are wrong, you have lost EVERYTHING! However, my being a Christian, if you are right, I have lost nothing. If you are wrong UI have GAINED EVERYTHING!

This country was founded on Christian beliefs, and I for one believe God should be considered in future plans for this country. For quite some time now, people have been trying to remove Him from our currency, schools, courthouses and public places. What about freedom of speach? Look at the shape our country is in...how's that workin for ya???

Singing Owl said...
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Singing Owl said...

Another Pentecostal, Assemblies of God, weighing in. I am also ordained and a pastor of an AG church. Thank you Catalyst for trying to bring some light on the subject. Speaking in "tongues" (see the Book of Acts, chapter two) is not someting done in public, in a frenzy or emotional state, etc. There are indeed some weird Pentecostals and Charismatics out there. But there are many more of us who are quite orderly in worship, even though we may be enthusiastic, who are reasonable, ecumenical, and mentalle well-balanced--for crying out loud--I was amazed at that first comment. Talk about sweeping generalizations! Our viewpoints are not all cookie cutter. I sometimes vote Republican and I sometimes vote Democrat. I could go on and on. Instead I'll just go away. ;-)

Catalyst said...

I'd like to share a 14 minute video filmed when Sarah Palin spoke at her home church of Wasilla Assembly of God. No matter what your denominational affiliation, it should encourage you to know that Sarah Palin is a real, humble, born-again, praying and believing woman who loves her family, state and country. See http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid1766638341. By the way, the media already is aware of this, and a few articles have already been written about it.

Anonymous said...

In the summer of 1997 (probably the second week of June) I attended a Wasilla community event commemorating the one-year anniversary of the Miller's Reach Wildfire. Sarah Palin attended as Mayor of Wasilla, a special guest. She sat on the dias where the Alaska Children's Choir stood ready to perform. When the choir sang "Amazing Grace" the audience all watched the then mayor throw her head back, close her eyes, and wave her arms around high in the air through every verse! I hope someone got a photo or video. I didn't take my camera that night.

Anonymous said...

I grew up in the evangelical world and I know that there are factions of the Republican Party that truly believe there should be no line between church and state. With that being said, I believe that questions about Palin's religious catechisms/dogma are totally relevant to the debate. Does she believe that consenting non-married adults have a legal right to sexual relations? Does she believe that the freedom of speech should be restricted to not offend some people's religious or moral inclinations? What rights do gay couples have in their relationships or are those relationships null and void of any rights? Each of these questions could place secular rights in direct conflict with her religious principles. Because of this, I want to know exactly what she believes or doesn't believe. I would like to know if she left Wasilla AG because of doctrinal differences or political expediency!

Insights into her beliefs about the gifts of the Spirit and the role of the church and politics in the life of a politician are appropriate. After all, this woman could end up being 1 melanoma away from the highest office in the land.

Jen said...

I like Sarah Palin and she certainly has changed the election and campaign, at least for now. Having said that I want to know what her position is on gay rights/Marriage, abortion, and other hot button topics. I don't really need to know what kind of church she attends but if she is planning on restricting rights and equality for some groups and individuals. Just because she is pro-life does not mean that she would like to see abortion become illegal again. She might not understand homosexuality but does that mean that she would prevent them from the same rights as other American? The assumption is of course yes but is it really? She doesn't have the power to change any of these issues. We are all free to have our own beliefs it is when we try to force them on others where it becomes a problem. I want to vote for the candidate based on their character not on the dogmatic beliefs that others have lumped on her.

Anonymous said...

Wow.

Is it really true that all these good progressive liberals are now. . . . . .

demanding to know just how Sarah Palin prays and what language uses?

Catalyst said...

Anonymous and Jen could benefit from a lesson in civics 101. In the federal government, it is the legislative branch of government that writes laws (i.e. Congress). The executive branch (president) approves them. The judicial branch (Supreme Court and other federal courts) judges their constitutionality. For you to imply that McCain or Palin would be writing laws shows you're not informed about the way government works. Besides, you're throwing up red herrings to strike fear into peoples' hearts who read this blog. Read your civics book first, then comment.

By the way, I lived in a country that used taxpayer money to pay clergymen's salaries. If you check your history books, I think you'll discover that Thomas Jefferson didn't want a system like that. Presidents like Lincoln declared a national day of prayer and fasting. If we have men and women in power who see themselves as the sole moral authority rather than God, we are teetering on the precipice. May God have mercy.

Anonymous said...

Speaking in tongues? What next? Does God actually listen only to Sarah Palin? If that is the case we need to all pray harder so he'll hear our prayers that we don't end up with Sarah in power. She is completely frightening and believes that she doesn't need to seek the council of anyone except herself. Sounds like George Bush, doesn't it. Be afraid. Be VERY afraid.

Professor said...

I love how there's 100% freedom of religion, as long as its a "true" Christian religion. I love how religion, teen pregnancy, and family issues shouldn't be an issue - as long as its the conservatives we're talking about. Where were these defenses when people were purposefully calling Obama Osama, or questioning his Christian faith, and derogatorily calling him a Muslim. I am ridiculously tired of Republican hypocrisy.

Frankly, Sarah Palin's faith is important, because for the past 8 years, we have had governance based on belief, rather than based on fact or evidence. Her belief that the war in Iraq is the will of God, and that she is performing the will of God in her actions, leads to the dangerous situation whereby she will govern based on belief, rather than on evidence. We have had enough of that this this country - it is time for intelligent governance, rather than by zealots.

Professor said...

Catalyst, perhaps your civics book is a bit elementary - maybe you're reading a 3rd grade level civics book. The executive branch now authors a lot of laws, and then submits them to congress. Under the Republicans, the lobbyists and corporate fat-cats, or partisan "think-tanks" write the laws on behalf of the White House, and then submit them to the Congress.

Catalyst said...

Professor, you're going to have to educate me. Can you give me one law that was authored by the executive branch and later approved by the Congress? Even if the executive branch were to suggest laws to the Congress, they would never see the light of day if Congress didn't let them out of committee. I look at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov and can't help noticing that all bills have Congressional sponsors, not Presidential sponsors.

Catalyst said...

Professor, please refrain from twisting the facts to smear Republicans. Back up your statements with trusted sources. I'd be interested to know if you could find a Republican spokesman that called Obama a Muslim. My guess is that you couldn't. However, I can understand why people might be concerned if Obama's dad was a Muslim and his name is Muslim in origin. Some people could make the assumption that Obama was sympathetic to Muslim terrorists and that our national security might be threatened. That said, I for one don't scour the internet to find anti-Obama blogs with misinformation to defend him against.

As for Palin believing that the war in Iraq is the will of God, her statement in front of her church in Wasilla was, "Pray that our national leaders are sending [the troops] out on a task that is from God. We have to make sure that we are praying that there is a plan, and that plan is God's plan." In other words, she is requesting prayer for the guidance and wisdom of our military leaders for them not to be making decisions contrary to God's will.

Now, to the question of whether war can be God's will, I don't think it's ever God's preferred tactic. However, it's sometimes necessary for secular governments to engage in military campaigns to protect themselves, their allies, or the interests of their allies, including economic or security threats. It's a dangerous world out there, and our military is one reason why we're not flying the Japanese, German or Soviet flag.

Professor said...

For the record:

Pro-life means that you believe that the government ought to intervene in order to restrict the ability of individuals to have the choice as to whether or not to have an abortion. Pro-lifers believe that birth starts at conception, so that an abortion is murder, and if choice is allowed, then it is government-sanctioned murder. Pro-choice means that you believe that the government ought not to intervene, and that a woman has the right to choose whether or not to have an abortion. This means that it gives individuals the choice to decide the point in which they believe life begins (as there is no real scientific definition). Pro-choice does not mean pro-abortion. It simply means that it will not allow the choice of what to believe up to individuals. Nobody believes that abortion is a good thing. Pro-life does not mean that you believe that women should choose not to have an abortion, as then they still have a choice. Palin is on record saying that she would make abortions illegal, even in cases of rape or incest. Ironically, when talking about her own daughter, she said it was her daughter's choice to have a child. I would work on those sources for you, but - it doesn't have to be a republican spokesperson - listen to Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, or Karl Rove. Granted these clowns aren't spokespersons of the Republican party, but they might as well be.

Professor said...

Here's to your fact checking:

Romney "mixed up" Obama with Osama.
Glenn Beck "mixed up" Obama with Osama.
Rep Mark Kirk (R. IL), "mixed up" Obama with Osama.
Liz Trotta on Fox news "mixed up" Obama with Osama, and then joked about how they should both be killed.
Pataki made the similar error.

Do Governors Mitt Romney or Gov George Pataki, or Rep Mark Kirk count as offical enough spokespersons for you? Romney had a speaking engagement at the convention. I assume that qualifies him as a spokesperson.

Would you like me to come up with a list of bills that have been written in part/whole by republican lobbyists? Or the executive brange? Or would you accept the fact that I have a Ph.D. in political science evidence enough that I know what I'm talking about. I hate to be arrogant, but sometimes its necessary. I am not democratic, I just don't like hypocrits, liars, and two-faced bastards. I wonder what a debate between old McCain vs. new McCain would look like? And to think that the republicans called Kerry a flip-flopper.

Professor said...

While I'm agitated, here's another beef:

The Republicans argued during the c convention that they are the party of small government, and that they are going to shrink the size of government. They always argue this. Over the past 30 years, the Republican administrations have led to the largest deficits, and the largest increases in government spending in history. The only difference is that their spending tends to be military spending, rather than on education or social programs. Anyhow, I could provide data, but you should take a policy class and learn about facts like that. Or pick up a textbook. I don't have time to give the exact stats.

They argued that Barack Obama would raise taxes on most Americans, while McCain will lower them. According to the Tax Policy Center, a non-partisan research group, http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/publications/url.cfm?ID=411750 (for the exact document and study) Obama's plan will raise after tax income of the middle class by 5%, McCain's by 3%. McCain's plan will largely benefit the wealthy, while Obama's plan will decrease the wealthiest's after-tax income by 1.5%. Obama raises 600 bn in revenue to pay off the debt; McCain's will result in 600 bn more in debt. Overall, Obama cuts taxes by 2.9 tril, while McCain cuts them by 4.2 tril, with most benefits accruing to those earning more than $125,000. As I said - I have no agenda - just the truth. My problem is that many people have not been telling the truth during this election.

John Fea said...

Professor,

I am glad that you have a Ph.D in political science and you have used this blog to simply "state the facts." Your points are well-taken and there are many I can agree with, but you need to do a better job of "stating the facts" in a civil and respectful way without demeaning and belittling the other commentators/posters.

Professor said...

Fair enough.

Catalyst said...

Well, professor, I'm still a bit incredulous. You said that Republican lobbyists write bills. Maybe they do, but you didn't present any support for your supposition. And even if they do, are we to assume that Democratic lobbyists don't ... especially since the Democrats are the majority party in both houses of Congress? And aren't the lobbyists lobbying Congress for these bills?

What about your assertion that the executive branch is authoring laws? That was what we were discussing. Never mind, though. You imply that just as long as you say that you're a professor of political science, you must be right; it would be fruitless to question you. But wait ... isn't that what you want your good students to do?

Anonymous said...

As a Assembly of God person myself...Tongues is no ones business but the person doing it!It is a great gift that God gave every beliver!If people actually read the book of Acts they would know that to be true! Why don't we pray for sarah instead of BASH here!

Anonymous said...

Anyone who truly believes in a supernatural deity (I don't believe all our presidents have, let alone most Americans) is mentally unstable and unfit for duty.

Anyone who speaks random babbling gibberish and thinks they're communicating with that supernatural deity is certifiably insane and should not be allowed within a mile of the Big Red Button.

Anonymous said...

If the President tells us he speaks to God and asks Him for guidance, he is admired for it.

If the President were to tell us he speaks to God on the telephone, we would deem him insane.

Why is the telephone the aggravating factor? I talk on the phone all the time and nobody calls it crazy. Isn't "talking to God" the crazy part?

Scotty said...

While interesting enough, the PhD is not impressive. You can claim to be neutral but it is also documented fact that the majority of college professors are liberals. Yes, Republicans are good about spending on the military. But at least when they are done spending on the military you can see where the money went. The Democrats spent a fortune on social programs, (which dont show as large deficits because of the higher taxes, a fact I'm sure your professors taught you to leave out of commentaries) which few in this country have anything to show for. It is common knowledge and occasionaly when reports are released proven fact that the majority of these social programs are dead end dreams of liberal poloticians that now are nothing but money pits with little if any true value to the country or its people.

I find your "I have no agenda" line highly unlikely. I also would prefer the truth be told, which is why I must disagree with your political assesment. This don't require a PhD, just simple economics 101. Give tax breaks to corporations, they take the extra money and expand their companies increasing jobs which increases tax revenues, puts money in workers pockets to spend into the economy which keeps the corporations growing. Example: I am in lower level management for CalArk trucking. We have experienced 22% to 26% growth in 2004, 2005, 206, 2007. All due to the Bush tax cuts. Our company has increased its fleet evey year by 150 to 200 trucks and over 500 trailers. We have opened 2 more terminals with full time service shops. Each one employing over 150 to 200 people. Not to mention the extra 250 per year in over all job increases. in the past 4 years I myself have recieved 3 promotions totaling a 32% increase in my own wages over those same years. This years plans? We are intentionally restricting our growth this year to just 8%. According to the powers that be it is because we are preparing for a possible Democratic government which will end the success of our business as well as its growth. So here I am a middle class white collar praying that we can keep cutting corporate taxes. You see Mr. Professor , what good does it do to increase corporate taxes while decreasing mine when the extra money I get from that now has to pay for the higher prices corps. have to put on their products to pay Obama's new higher taxes? Ahhh, not so pretty when explain in terms the simple man understands. Your PhD looks good on paper and in the content of your big words and numbers but lacks in value.

Anywho. While that debate is humorous and without much merit it is also irrelevant considering the subject of the original blog. On that note it is neccesary to point out a few things that are just a little off fact about Pentecost.

1. Just as every denomination, Pentecost has had splinter groups break off and start off shoot denominations. AG is one such group. While AG believes in the baptism of the Holy Ghost, they do not deem the experience as neccesary and go even further to say that it is not for everyone. The original doctrine of Pentecost as taught at Azusa Street says that the baptism of the Holy Ghost is not only for everyone who would believe but is a neccesity to salvation. So while she may be a member of AG does not neccesarily mean she is a tongue talkin holy roller.

2. Unintelligable utterances or speaking in tongues as defined using scripture. Speaking in tongues is the evidence of recieving the infilling of the Holy Ghost. The bible states that the mouth(tongue) is sharper than a two edged sword. It speaks what is in the heart. There for when the heart is filled with the Holy Spirit of God the mouth will profess His Glory. The term Unknown tongue is referring to the person speaking. The language will be unknown to them. However the language they will be speaking in is a viable language. It has been known for missionaries to visit foriegn countries and hear locals speaking in tongues in a language the local person has no knowledge of yet the missionary understands perfectly.

3. Time of conception by christian pro-lifers is derived from scripture. When the bible speaks of conception it always speaks of it in three phases, intercourse, conception and then birth. Thus they believe conception is prior to birth. The argument about rape and insest is written off as simply selfish. The bible says that "God allows rain on the just as well as the unjust." So to think that the all "loving and wonderful" God would not want someone to go through something so terrible is ludicrous and not scriptural. See the book of Job. (I could write a book on that one)

4. Where Peter speaks of tongues in interpretation or silence refers to open and loud tongues. One who is being used of God and given prophetic tongues will speak them loudly to be heard by the church and who ever may be the interpreter. However, it is very common for Pentecostals to speak in tongues in prayer, worship or praise services and this is not wrong. But these instances should be kept in silence in that one does not vocalize as in interpretations. In otherwise, just keep the volume down. To speak in tongues loudly without interpretations was considered back then to be "boasting". So, to speak in tongues without interpretations is not wrong as has been suggested. After all, if tongues is of God and He is the source, how can it be wrong?

And last but not least, I believe there are fewer atheist in the world than proclaim. Most people who say they do not believe in God do so simply because it is more convenient for them not to believe in God. Besides, our science can send an rc car to Mars that gets knocked off by a rock. But the best we can do for creation is a "theory" that the complexity that exist today was some how created by a cosmic belch takes more faith to believe in than the church will ever have.

Anonymous said...
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Scotty said...

Sorry anonymous, but you got have something to say something. I can quote facts and show proof. Your opinion is just that, an opinion. You may not want a Pentecostal as VP or Pres. but personal slander based on ...... well nothing really, is more mindless than your accusation. For your understanding , that means , your just flailing at the wind cause your mad about something. Those of theology can very well look at your post and decern that since you seem to "believe" you can "do it all your self" is in and of itself arrogant. Which pretty much makes your post mere entertainment...

Anonymous said...

dear anonymous atheist/raised southern Baptist

You urge us to shake ourselves and free us from a religious lie...a few years ago you might have bothered me with that,but 5 years ago i had the book of Acts experience,the Baptism/infilling of the Holy Spirit
...I was a back-slidden 44 yr old that had become a believer at 14 but was bothered by atheistic evolutioary teaching in school...i didnt have answers,then so I side stepped the issue and drifted away from God and into a promiscuous lifestyle...but God didnt forget me and drew me back too him in early 2003...later that year in my home,by myself he filled me with his Spirit...and answered all the questions I needed answers to by making me to know that he is real..you cannot imagine how near he is at all times. When you are in your room praying and a great roaring surrounds you and you drift off and hear yourself speak uncontrollably in another language for 20 minutes or so,and lay there in awe afterward...NO ONE can tell you there is no God...this happened not once but 3 times in 7 months...I knew in an instant how deceived atheists and evolutionist are...I'll describe it like this: Imagine you are in a theatre watching a movie and a freight train breaks through the screen...the movie is what we think and want to believe...the freight train is God...reality!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Simple comment:

She speaks in tongues. So?! Who cares.

jism singh said...
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