This is my chosen title for a guest sermon I'll be preaching for the "One True Church of Jesus Christ That Has Ever Existed in History." The preacher is away on vacation. This church meets in a little building on "Faith" Street in a town called Saint Paul, Missouri, the "Show Me" state (never-mind the oxymoron). They have a membership of 10 people, all related to each other in some way. Here are my chosen texts. How should I develop my sermon?
I find it interesting that Loftus never identifies the exact name of the church or the pastor of that church. Loftus doesn't show the people or their Pastor any respect whatsoever. I hope he'll be kinder in person. And on top of that I think that considering how Jesus would apply the OTF a great idea.
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye...So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.Loftus says he was once a preacher. I wonder how much time will he have. He says he is going to use 12 verses from Matthew 7 but on the post he only quotes verses 1-5, and 12. This is one of my favorite passages of scripture because I think it does explain how we are to interact with one another. So many people think Jesus meant that "judging" means calling others to a standard. The OTF itself requires making judgments. So I don't think that Loftus is taking the view so many mistakenly take. Let's instead ask if this passage can be used to validate or invalidate Christians? If anything it validates Christianity and makes it plain how far we have fallen short in keeping it. It shows us what standard we should be living up to and we know that we haven't. Which is what Christianity teaches.
And then this one from Matthew 23:
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites!...“Woe to you, blind guides!...You blind fools!...You blind men!"...“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites!...You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel"...“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’...“You snakes! You brood of vipers!;-)
It seems to me that John Loftus thinks that these passages are some sort of slap in the face of Christians. It cuts Atheism to the quick. Any one who teaches that Jesus isn't who He said He is and that they are without sin and that we don't need God or His gift of salvation is that "brood of vipers". They are hypocrites and "white-washed tombs",. In other words it describes atheists who try to turn people away from Jesus. The passages prove that Christianity passes Loftus' Outsider Test for Faith.
Gee, I wonder why Lofus didn't point out that Jesus also said the following:
“If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea." - Matthew 18:6
Debunking Christianity: What Jesus Christ Had to Say About the Outsider Test for Faith!