Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ground Rules...

Before we dive into the next topic, I thought that it may be beneficial in order to setup some ground rules. Evidently, there are people who have commented in the past, and they are upset at the way that I am moderating the conversation.

I humbly apologize to those who feel as though they have been slighted by the way I have moderated the conversation, and I ask that they will help me come up with ground rules that will be beneficial to everyone.

So, to start off, I will offer two ground rules..

1.) Everything that is said in the comment section, should be said in a spirit of charity.

We should not be attacking each other personally. The only thing that should be grounds for debate are the theological positions that we hold, not the person that is holding them. In other words, no personal insults.

2.) I will no longer block comments...

This one is a stretch for me, but so long as it fosters communication, I am willing to do it. In the past, I have blocked comments, due to not being on topic, or violating the 1st ground rule that I mentioned. Instead, of blocking comments, I will respond to the comment asking that the commenter stay on topic. In the case of comments that violate the 1st ground rule, I will let the comment of the commenter speak for itself.

Are there any other ground rules that you think would be appropriate to consider?

19 comments:

born4battle said...

Please define "spirit of charity". I have observed that many times (in various places in blogland) having one's feelings hurt, or haveing been merely criticized for faulty logic constituted being 'non-charitable'.

I probably won't participate much however, unless scripture is the basis for dialogue, for its own merits. In other words scripture gets the final say in the dialogue, not matter what Rome or John Calvin might have to say about it.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

"spirit of charity"
Spirit of love.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Cor 14:4-7)
I probably won't participate much however, unless scripture is the basis for dialogue, for its own merits.Any level of participation is welcome.

born4battle said...

Carlus,

I proposed a third ground rule.

3. All arguments/position points should contain support from the context of scripture, meaning at least the surrounding context of scripture verses offered as supporting the argument/position made. Calvin said, or St. Whoever said is insufficient for the discourse.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

I like the suggestion regarding having the conversation with Scriptural support, however, it would seem that you would like to have a conversation based on Scripture alone, without the use of 2000 years of Church History or theologians (Catholic and Non-Catholic).

I would not say that the use of theologians, Catholic or Non-Catholic, is completely out of the picture. I understand that while these theologians, once again Catholic or not, may not carry much weight with some people, they do carry weight with others. So in the interest of not alienating anyone, once again Catholic or Non-Catholic, I think that it is completely within the conversation to use such resources.

Maybe we can leave the theologians and History out of the equation in some of our conversations, but to completely disregard it, would not do the heroes of our faith justice.

Thoughts?

born4battle said...

We could probably have a great discussion with scripture alone,in English, just talking about what it says in it's immediate and larger biblical context, asking the question what does it SAY in plain Englilsh?

There is very little I currently believe that I didn't arrive at from just reading scripture. That great theologians through the ages have arrived at the same conclusions is very comforting, but not why I believe any specific doctrine. The great doctrines of the faith are clear from the text of scripture itself (when taken in context, that is).

Just let scripture be the final arbiter of what is true. Previous discussions have pretty much ended up with a serious attempt to define what is in scripture on one side and what the RC says on the other.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

We could probably have a great discussion with scripture alone,in English, just talking about what it says in it's immediate and larger biblical context, asking the question what does it SAY in plain Englilsh?
Agreed!!!

The great doctrines of the faith are clear from the text of scripture itself (when taken in context, that is).
Agreed!!!

born4battle said...

That scares me......I cannot imagine you not bringing Catholic presuppositions to the table. You always have. Is it possible to just what Scripture SAYS, and not read in what is not clear? You are willing to discuss matters without the Catholic perspective?

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

I cannot imagine you not bringing Catholic presuppositions to the table. You always have. Is it possible to just what Scripture SAYS, and not read in what is not clear? You are willing to discuss matters without the Catholic perspective?
It is impossible to read scripture, or anything from that matter, from a completely unbiased position. We always bring to Scripture the things that we believe and are taught prior to reading the scripture.

We all own a lens that we see the world through - our perspective. Ever read 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey? here is a great chapter or two about perspective and the way that we see the world, which basically amounts to perspective is reality.

In the same sense, when you and I read scripture, we see different things because of the lens in which we see God's Revelation to man. Overall, what I am saying is that I am willing to investigate my lens and the way that I see Gods Revelation in light of the conversations that may take place here.

I am interested in the Truth. I believe that there is Truth in Scriptures because it is God's Word. I don't think that it is a Catholic vs. Protestant argument. I am well aware, as I am sure that you are as well, that there are many different denominations, that are not in full agreement either. It is not just Catholic perception which contrasts a Non-Catholic perspective (although in this blog it is).

Protestants quibble among themselves about what is divine revelation and what is not. Should infants be baptized, eternal security, sacraments and sacramentals, true presence of Christ in Eucharist/Communion - these are challenged and debated within Protestant circles as well.

Overall, I am willing to examine the lens in which I see Christianity. Are you willing to examine yours?

I don't know if I answered your question or concern, if not, then let me know.

God bless...

born4battle said...

I think you have addressed my concern satisfactority. Thank you.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

You are most welcome. Now if I can only find the time to write the next post...we can have something to talk about =)

Willison said...

Seems to me your 2nd rule negates the first. If someone is flatly insulting, or completely off topic, it's going to get posted anyway?

Carlus Henry said...

Willison,

Yes. It will get posted anyways.

Instead of blocking the comment, I am just going to try to encourage the people who are taking part in the conversation to stay on topic or stop throwing insults.

I am hoping to have more problems with people straying off of the topic oppose to people throwing insults back and forth...

triednotfried said...

Still don't see my comment....bummer..

Yes Willison, see Carlus is beginning to understand that letting you "has nothing to do with it" comments through and nobody elses may not be fair....

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

I am not sure what the capabilities are in WordPress....but once a comment has been rejected, there is really no bringing it back on blogspot...it is gone forever....that is the reason why you don't see your comment.

Also, just to be fair, I have let other comments through that were not particularly on topic in an effort to start a new topic. It was not just Willisons.....

So once again, I apologize, but your comment (and anyone one elses comment) that I rejected before will not be showing up. All future ones will be made available though....

triednotfried said...

"Also, just to be fair, I have let other comments through that were not particularly on topic in an effort to start a new topic. It was not just Willisons....."

At least we're starting to be truthful here now, keep in mind Carlus that I am against Catholicism, so if you are looking for agreement, you will rarely find it. It should still be discussed tho. Here is my comment:

Hi Carlus:

I am writing again, I don’t believe it is fair to leave without fully explaining myself, or my frustration. My last comment was a bit misleading, as I truly know all I need and want to know about the Catholic Church. My Mom and her entire family (she has 8 brothers and sisters) were victims of RC, and to this day (she is 82) still has an occasional story, shaking her head, not believing the wrongness in the practices of the church. I have prayed for awhile now about how to write this, and aside from the Lord beginning to fill my plate with ministry, there are some definite reasons why I won’t be here much for awhile. I think this is a good place to begin, something I read recently.

“If you were to move from one house to another, because the first house had a lousy foundation, you would move. And that would be the wise thing to do.”

When I read this, I really began to think on it. A house could be a person, a ministry, a religion, an actual home....fill in the blank. You must know that old saying, “Home is where the heart is”, well my home, first and foremost is with Jesus Christ. He is where my heart is. So, with the above quote, I disagree. It matters alot wether I move from one house to another. Bouncing from religion to religion is useless, as is bouncing from ministry to ministry. That’s why it is all in relationship. The foundation has got to be solid. Your version of Catholic History is not. It’s been shown time and time again. I have had some very poor foundations in my non-denominational walk with the Lord, but He has never moved me to another “house.”

What He does is require the house He has given me, along with the instruction manual (His Word) to be lifted higher to Him until He has adjusted the foundation, ripped it apart and rebuilt it to a Holy, and solid place, where He can then replace the house (relationship, ministry, religion) on solid ground, namely His Son.

I don’t see this in Catholicism. I see both a faulty foundation, and house.

The other reason why I am taking a break is, I don’t want to talk to hear myself talk. I look at this computer screen and my heart is not here. This is nothing more than a “I’m right and going to try and convince you now” session. I turn my head from this computer and there are 15 people beside me starving to know God’s Word, God’s truth. They are the ones I am to minister to. Discussion is fine if there is something to discuss. I believe in stating God’s truth, and letting the Holy Spirit do His work. I’m not Him. Until He takes these blinders off, if He so chooses, I really don’t see what more there is to discuss. This constant ignoring of truth on a platter in front of your nose for the sake of proving Catholicism is correct, is not something I can continue with.

My house, as I said, is Jesus Christ, and the ministry He has set before me. The foundation is His Word. I don’t intend on changing houses, that’s too easy. The sacrifice, perseverance and faith kick in, when you stay in the house given you, and as I said, allow the Lord to rebuild the foundation. I don’t know how to tell you to do that with your house falling down around your ears.

Aside from all of the other stuff that RC brings, if you would just get in His Word, you would find truth. You don’t need all this other stuff....I’ll stop by once in awhile and see how ur doing, but I would much rather reason with people who are reasonable. There are plenty....

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

As promised...I have allowed the comment to be posted. And as promised, I would ask that you would please stay on topic.

My Mom and her entire family (she has 8 brothers and sisters) were victims of RC, and to this day (she is 82) still has an occasional story, shaking her head, not believing the wrongness in the practices of the church.
At some point, I would love to hear more about what they believed are and is the wrongness of the practices of the Catholic Church.

Your version of Catholic History is not. It’s been shown time and time again.
Although this comment is not on topic, I think that it is worthwhile to support the claims made. This is too general of a statement. What specific parts of my view of Catholic History is not entirely accurate and based on what?

This constant ignoring of truth on a platter in front of your nose for the sake of proving Catholicism is correct, is not something I can continue with.
Hmmm....what Truth? What specifically? Once again, please explain and support what you are saying.

I don’t know how to tell you to do that with your house falling down around your ears.
hmmm....

Aside from all of the other stuff that RC brings, if you would just get in His Word, you would find truth. You don’t need all this other stuff
I have got inside of His Word. I have found Truth. What other stuff? The things that Jesus Christ Himself instituted? Is that what you mean by "other stuff"?

See how easy it is to stray from topic....You and I both are very passionate about God and Christianity and if we are not careful, we can just wind up discussing anything that may come up. So please, in the future, help me to keep the focus on the topic at hand.

God bless...

triednotfried said...

Yes Carlus: I understand how easy it is, but the best thing to do is what you are doing, allow people to voice their opinion, you do not have to answer or defend and more than we do, but hearing everyone is important for a full picture. That's all I'm saying.

Willison said...

Carlus it seems to me you've had this blog for a year now and you are changing to address the complaints of people who don't want to either teach or learn. Change if you want - not becasue they "demand" it.

Carlus Henry said...

Willison,

Good point, and thanks for mentioning it. Right now, I am willing to give these ground rules a go. It seems only fair to address the concerns that some may have regarding how discussion has taken place thus far. If it will help to facilitate discussion, great. Time will tell...

God bless...