I’m not sure at what point Christians decided to take upon themselves the task of cleansing other people from their sins. But at some point it happened: Christianity saw itself become the moral police who would call out people for their sins and institute practices such as excommunication. It became the task of each individual Christian to make people aware of their sins and bar them from participation in certain church activities such as being involved in leadership. Now, obviously if someone is involved in sinful activities that could actually do harm to someone else, those people should be barred from participation. However, we as Christians have missed a crucial teaching of Jesus‘ that often goes unheeded. That injunction was to not judge sinners, and that we should remove the log from our eye before focussing on the splinter in someone else’s eye.
Jesus was clear that when he spoke against sin, we were to take the information he provided us as a way of being self corrective instead of being critical of others for their sins. That of course does not mean we need to be guilt laden, since Jesus’ death and resurrection atone for our sins. But we are to take the commands of the Bible as ways of instilling obedience in our own lives, not other people’s. [Brandon Parks, MDIV] FULL POST
Jesus died for gay people, too!
A Sermon on Forgiveness
Pentecost (Ancient Greek: Πεντηκοστή [ἡμέρα], Pentēkostē [hēmera], “the Fiftieth [day]”) is a prominent feast in the calendar of Ancient Israel celebrating the giving of the Law on Sinai, and also later in the Christian liturgical year commemorating the descent of theHoly Spirit upon the remaining eleven Apostles of Christ (Judas had hanged himself), included in the 12 Disciples in the Upper Room, after the Resurrection of Jesus. The feast is also called Whit Sunday, Whitsun, or Whit, especially in the United Kingdom, where the following Monday was traditionally a holiday. Pentecost is celebrated seven weeks (50 days) after Easter Sunday, hence its name.Pentecost falls on the tenth day after Ascension Thursday.
Among Christians, Pentecost commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Twelve apostles and other followers of Jesus as described in the Acts of the Apostles 2:1-31. For this reason, Pentecost is sometimes described as the “Birthday of the Church.”
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New International Version (NIV)
5 Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you. 2 Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. 3 Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. 4 Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. 5 You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter.[a] 6 You have condemned and murdered the innocent one, who was not opposing you.