Academic Religion

I've been living in Hong Kong now for five years. Since I became a born again Christian in 1975, and having lived in several locations, I have been able to make friends with several pastors and in fact, had two very good friends that were pastors. I have learned that the title of pastor, minister, priest, bishop, or pope doesn't mean you know what a true relationship with Jesus Christ is all about, nor do they hold all of the virtues of a Godly and spiritually mature Christian.

I am promoting the theory that, no one should trust or give reverence to these people unless they prove they are worthy of it, through reputation and actions, coupled with their words. I want you to keep this thought deeply centered in your mind as you read this whole post.

The next thing I want you to keep in mind is the question, "who did Jesus Christ choose as his representatives, apostles, for promoting HIS gospel, after HE knew HE would be raised up?"

The more educated a person is, the higher opinion they have of themselves and their beliefs. They for the most part, I say this candidly, because there is a small percentage that have grown is Christ and learned humility and their right place in the body of Christ, they put themselves above other people, and they have a tendency to ridicule others, thoughts, experiences, and perceptions of God's personal leadings.

To further set the stage for my post, how did our lord respond to questioners and debaters that were trying to trick HIM up, in order to persecute HIM. He, knowing their minds, was always able to deliver the last question that would deliver the final blow, so to speak, that would confound them, and silence their foolish utterance.

So now, I want to post my personal emails that were sent back and forth to my great and famous friend who is a prominent pastor of a church that has been established for 40 years. I will not correct any mistakes in English or spelling to preserve the exact text that was traded back and forth.
This first conversation was sent on July 14th of 2011.

Hi Pastor:

I hope everything is well with you. I had a thought after the comment you made here...
But when he talks about getting firearms  (though just a short reference), you know where he is coming from. and it generated a question in my mind.

I hope you don't mind me asking. What do you feel are the legitimate uses of guns?

Thank you;


Right-wing Christians in the States believe strongly in the right to bear arms. This goes back to the Revolutionary War and an amendment to the constitution.  In view of the widespread possession of firearms in the States, this might be defendable for self-defense. Also some use firearms for hunting and recreational sports.  There is no problem with this.
But the problem with the conspiracy theory Christians (extreme right wing), is they want to be armed to protect themselves from an evil anti-Christ government.  This is where this speaker is coming from.  But it makes no sense, for it these world leaders and their anti-Christ agenda is really as strong as they claim, they will go to no end to eliminate the opposition. Your firearms will be nothing when the government has major heavy duty weapons, and are determined to eliminate the resistance. 
If would be far better to simply have faith in God. If you are armed you will die for sure. If not, as in China, you might simply spend years in prison, but your life will be spared.  And the power of prayer and faith can bring down any evil government as we have seen everywhere in the past several decades.
But it would better if they had laws like HK, Australia, U.K., etc., where any weapons are not allowed by ordinary.  You hardly ever hear of killings, and if they do happen they are usually domestic violence using knives, etc., are criminals killed by the triad leaders.  In the US due to the prevalence of weapons, you have major massacres every year or so.  I think they are stupid, and what they need is a good gun-control law.  But don’t tell evangelical Christians this, for this is the center of their faith.  It is hard to understand.

I came to the office early yesterday morning and listened to the whole video of several hours.
You would think when dates were given, like the return of the Lord by Harold Camping and Family Radio in May 21, and nothing happens, people would realize they have been victims of deception. But they never do that and now he has a new date of October 21 (it was supposed to happen in 1994 also). 
These speakers do not claim to speak by inspiration or prophecy, but to have ‘insider information’.  In spite of his claim, this is all ‘conspiracy theory’, based on their distorted view of the end time.  This is due to their reading of Hal Lindsey and other prophetic teachers, but not from the Word of God.
When George Bush spoke about a ‘new world order’, it is not some conspiracy by the Freemasons, Illuminati, or these people this speaker has met, but simply the idea that after the fall of the Soviet empire, nations need a new order of relationships.  The claim that these political leaders are part of some age-old conspiracy to take over the world has been proven almost without a shadow of doubt to be false.
It is true there are major problems in the world with the weak US economy and the possibility of QE3 which will even devalue the dollar more, crisis in the euro zone that might even mean the breakup of the euro as a currency, and such problems. But this does not mean a total collapse of the US dollar and a new world currency.  It is not that it is not possible, but the chances are problem so slim.  
Why are not other economists speaking of this? Of course he would think they are all part of this anti-Christ system.  If it did happen, it would be the most dramatic event to happen in hundreds of years, and would be a major disaster for all of mankind.  But we only have to wait for a year, and we know if this is true or not.
But when he talks about getting firearms  (though just a short reference), you know where he is coming from. He is most likely a John Bircher, extreme fanatical right-winger.  This is a repeat of the Millennium Bug nonsense. Can you think that you have the food stocks because you made preparation, the hungry people come to take them from you, so you shoot them dead to protect your food.  Such nonsense. 
The root of this is a lot of Christians are not founded in the Word of God, thus they try to find simple reasons and answers for all the complicated problems of life, like a group of men who are controlling the world and making history. But it is not that simple.  All problems are due to sin in the world, rebellion against God and the work of the devil. But there are a lot of things that are hard to understand, such as suffering of the righteousness, tsunamis and earthquake in which ‘innocent’ people die, failures in people and even the ministry. These do not have easy answers.
We all lived through the Arab Spring just a few months ago. Why cannot these people accept it for what it is – people wanting the freedoms that other peoples have. Why does it have to be by the Muslim Brotherhood, planned decades ago by these people who run the world?  Do you really believe all the problems in the world and the economies is because a group of select men want oil to go to $150 to solve the economic policies of the US?  By the way, Henry Kissinger is alive and healthy. Why don’t you find his email and ask him if there is really this secret plan to destroy the US dollar?
The essence of the Christian message is our salvation, our relationship to God and others and preaching the Good News.  This is simply speculation and has nothing to do with the work of God. At any rate the Lord told us not to worry about tomorrow, but today to seek the Kingdom of God.
God bless you,


Hi Pastor:

This is posted from the Vietnam pilot I was telling you about that has connections on the ground in Iraq. By the way, he is one of the professed believers.

His name is Okie, I won't send you alot of this stuff, but wanted to give you a taste of the info coming through on the wire.

[peachee] OKIE_OIL_MAN] everyone be settled in your mind--everything that transpired yesterday that kept the r'v from happening has been solved--relax a couple of days--i am positive and sure (i have never said that before) it is done--period--this time is not another delay--that i am sure-period

[felice444] Okie said to just sit still a couple days.....and yesterday has been rectified!

[logos12] Okie intel...we are on track sit still for a few days it is happening, only yesterday was the complete and entire gov't formed...there are reasons it didnt happen yesterday...cant disclose...sit back and wait a couple days...

Okie bucknut1] Okie he can not say why it did not happen yesterday, but that it is real and is going to happen.

OKIE_OIL_MAN] seniortour yes i have rate--it is not my place to relay .

OKIE_OIL_MAN] keep the faith--it will be justified shortly--gone for now .

[OKIE_OIL_MAN] no delays henceforth--glitch--nuff said--confidential intel--would get my too-too cut off if i expounded ...

[yukonchuck] Cessie



Dear Mark
Greetings again. Thanks for this information. It is very interesting. I have read it and checked on the web sites you referred to, but am not experienced enough in these complicated financial matters to really understand everything.
I do hope for your sake this revaluation will materialize, for it can be a financial blessing for you and your family.
But with my very limited knowledge of the how financial matters work, it certainly doesn’t make any sense.
The only reason it would be that it takes thousands of Iraqi dinars to purchase any simple item could only be that this government has gone crazy printing money.  If the US dollar is worth some 1,100 dinars, it is simply because that based on the foreign reserves and economy it is only worth that much. 
I don’t see how any decision of the government can possibly change that, for the value of a currency only reflects reality.  China can in a small way manipulate their currency for they have trillions of dollars and hard cash to back up the RMB. Otherwise it would be nearly worthless as the dinar and other currencies.
As the economy improves and the general situation of security, rule of law, foreign investment, etc., improves in Iraq, it is reasonable to expect an increase in value of the dinar.  But it would be gradually do so over a long period of time.  If after several years it had increased 100% (say US $1 = 100 dinars), it would be a huge reevaluation, but is plausible. But to revalue over 1000% overnight on the decision of some bank or government official is something I have never hear of. 
Of course that could happen (as in other nations) if they simply cut off a few zeros at the end of the currency.  But that would mean the dinars you have are nearly worthless, for you would have to exchange them at the new rate using the new currency.
 Maybe there is something I am missing, as it makes no sense to me.  Then with all the crime in Iraq including bank robberies, what guarantee there is that the dinars you or other people possess is not stolen property?  I am sure they number bills in the bank, and if you tried to change it back at a bank they recognize, might you not be charged with dealing with stolen property? 
 Forgive me, for these are just things that seem so obvious to me, but again I may be missing the whole picture. 
 But I guess we will know soon if this revaluation is real, for I would suspect it would be major news as the demonstrations and related matters in Egypt.
God bless,