I'm gonna go full theology nerd on this nonsense.
In his Star Trek series, Gene Roddenberry envisioned an enlightened post-Christian world where secular reason ruled an enlightened Earth that sought to explore and promote peace in the cosmos.
Unsurprisingly to those of us who understand the telos of man and his need to seek his Creator, Roddenberry got Earth President Stacey Abrams and this instead:
No, this headline isn't a gotcha. There was actually language that was even more disturbing in this prayer that RedState could have used. We'll get into what Anna Sheetz, the Director of Christian Education at First Presbyterian Church of Iowa City, had to say during last Sunday's service.
Here's video timestamped for your convenience. Go ahead and watch, and then we're gonna break this down:
Did you make it through?
I barely did, but I also thought it important enough to sit down late on a Friday night to analyze this mess for y'all.
Take a minute to bandage your bleeding ears, then we'll dive in...
This past Thursday, March 31st, was the International Transgender Day of Visibility. In the PCUSA, we welcome all of our transgender and queer siblings into this family and relationship with the Creator God. So today, I wish to pray a prayer that was written for this incredible day. Will you pray with me?
If you're thinking this lady isn't invoking the God of the Bible, think again:
Oh God of Pronouns, we give praise to the Great One, the One who was identifiable as God.
"I am what I am," You say.
The Great "They," the Incarnate "He" and "She," the God of Trans-Being.
Impregnating Mary, fathering God.
Hoo dang. You know, this is actually what Muslims think that Christians believe (based on the teachings of the Quran) – that God impregnated Mary like the Greek god Zeus when he became a swan and forced himself on a woman, Leda, causing her to give birth to Pollux and Helen of Troy.
Muslims who believe this error about the Christian faith maintain that it's heresy to believe that God would have sexual relations with a woman to create a god-son, which would be correct.
It's a shame that their theology is more on point than this church's!
Breastfeeding God of Many Breasts…
Well that's a weird way to take "El Shaddai" (God Almighty or God All-Sufficient) out of context.
No doubt this woke cultist is referring to the fact that all ancient Mesopotamians used the name "El" to refer to their gods, and some scholars argue this "Shaddai" name had a linguistic relation to the word for "breast," invoking the image of a many-breasted fertility god who could feed all people (pagans and their obsession with sex and all that).
I guess she missed a few things.
- There may be a small group of scholars who believe the word "Shaddai" relates to breasts, but many more believe it relates to an ancient term for "mountain" or "rock." The fact that scribes over the last few thousand years have rendered the translation as "God Almighty" and not "God The Many-Breasted" is good evidence for the latter. If it is the former, it is a loan term that must be taken into context with the way God reveals Himself throughout Scripture.
- Everyone since Moses has known that God chose to use that term to help Abraham, a Mesopotamian man in the polytheistic ancient world, understand that He alone was God (Genesis 17:1). As God has done throughout history, He stooped down into Abraham's lexicon and traditions (you theology nerds will recall the common Near-East ritual of cutting animals in half that God had Abraham complete as part of a formal "signing" of a contract or covenant between two parties).
- But by the time of Moses when the Israelites had been out of Mesopotamia and in Egypt for over 400 years, God specified that He was not just the God of Mesopotamia or Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He was the Creator of the freaking universe.
"God spoke to Moses and said to him, "I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by my name the Lord I did not make myself known to them." – Exodus 6:2-3
Now let's turn back to the modern pagans:
You shatter all stereotypes, making every single person…male and female, intersex, nonbinary in Your image.
Exactly in your image.
This person really failed seminary.
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." – Genesis 1:27 ESV
Literally the first chapter of the Bible…
At least this prayer couldn't get worse, right???
Spectrum Rainbow God…
Spectrum Rainbow God, who put Your promise for non-violence in the symbol for queer love before humanity knew.
Because You knew.
Who had Joseph, who could not sleep with a woman in a beautiful lady's cloak, perhaps of rainbow colors.
Wait, is she trying to imply Jacob's son Joseph was gay?
You… do realize he fathered two sons with his wife who became half-tribes of Israel, right?
And that rainbows had nothing to do with gayness until the last 5 seconds of history?
Before we knew, You knew.
Yep, that's what they're going with.
God of Pronouns, who said, "You can call me ‘He' or ‘She' or ‘They,' whatever makes you feel closest to Me."
He said "I AM THAT I AM," meaning He is completely defined by Himself and none other.
"And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven." - Jesus in Matthew 23:9
He is not a she/xim/xer/they.
Seriously, "they"? At worst, you're advocating straight polytheism and at best you're denying the fundamental Christian doctrine of the Trinity in favor of the idea that God is one person who presents Himself in three forms.
He is "Our Father, who is in heaven."
If this lady had the Bible and history knowledge of a farmer in the 1800s (cuz everyone knew their Bible back then thanks to peeps like William Tyndale), she'd know that there were some VERY important meetings in the early days of the church to ward off heresies by defining doctrine.
Let's see how the Nicene Creed, written in 325 AD at the Council of Nicaea, begins:
We believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible.
If you wonder where they got that idea, please read the entire Bible.
Back to the woke prayer:
Invisible and Visible God, on this day where visibility, celebration, belatedness, affirmation, and acceptance is the bare minimum, remind us that You are the God of Pronouns, so You affirm and You celebrate them.
Do you remember in the Old Testament when God kept warning the Israelites not to do detestable things in His name? This is what that looks like.
"[The Israelites] have turned to me their back and not their face. And though I have taught them persistently, they have not listened to receive instruction. They set up their abominations in the house that is called by my name, to defile it. They built the high places of Baal in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to offer up their sons and daughters to Molech, though I did not command them, nor did it enter into my mind, that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin." - Jeremiah 32:33-35
In these verses, God names the ritual of sacrificing children to seek better riches and opportunities – another thing the PCUSA denomination supports.
Just in case you think I'm cherry-picking, here's another verse where God describes the Israelites' obsession with sex cults and infanticide:
"You who burn with lust among the oaks, under every green tree, who slaughter your children in the valleys, under the clefts of the rocks?" – Isaiah 57:5
There's about 8,000 more verses I could use to describe how the Israelites consistently kept making up their own ideas of God and calling them "Yahweh" (Golden Calf, anyone?).
Isn't it funny that this "new" woke religion looks a lot like the boring old paganism that most people used to follow? From the Vikings to the Romans to the Egyptians to the ancient kingdoms of Southeast Asia, it's all the same crud.
We're still not through this prayer yet:
God of Saul, Paul, Simon, Jacob, Isaac, Simon Peter, Abram and Sarai and Abraham and Sarah, God of Joseph, of the coat of many colors, of the Ethiopian eunuch, of the virgin Mary, God of all Found Families in the Bible.
Remind us that You affirm us in our full identity — name, pronoun, found family, all of it.
Nope. He calls you to repent of your sins, in which you will die and suffer in hell, and to cast yourself at the foot of the Cross.
God does not affirm your sin and you are not enough. Following Christ brings the only promise of eternal life and joy – we are adopted as sons and daughters of God! – but as Pilgrim's Progress so beautifully illustrates, the way is marked with constant denial of self and suffering.
For this, we give You thanks and praise to the Great I Am. The Great They/Them.
SHEESH. AGAIN WITH THE "THEY/THEM."
Remember that thing about not taking God's name in vain? Holy literal cow.
Thank you, God.
And so now, in the words that our mother, our father, and our sibling God taught us to pray, and pray with us now, [recites the Lord's Prayer]…
Yeah, she ends by inserting Jesus' prayer into the mix.
I'm pretty sure the early church fathers are happy they only had to deal with gnosticism, modalism, Arianism, and the ilk instead of this woke stuff!
I'll leave you with the top three YouTube comments:
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