Christians

  • dear avery

    dear avery (660)

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    dru is beautiful.:
    @ atlas -
    Not all Christians are like that. I'm sorry you see it so often, but there are a lot of Christians (like me) who believe in the separation of church and state and don't care what others believe (as long as they aren't an asshole about it).
    This exactly. I have no issue with religion, my issue is with radicals.
    February 7th, 2014 at 09:49am
  • Alsoldey

    Alsoldey (230)

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    I'm not any kind of new age Christian, I just am a traditional one. But! I dislike radicals and the hate that most Christ followers have for homosexuals. My church always taught us (the youth) "love the sinner, but not the sin"...

    I like to believe that God has love for ALL of his children. We humans just...are not so great. Eh.
    February 7th, 2014 at 04:58pm
  • wxyz

    wxyz (240)

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    SmilingScarlet:
    My church always taught us (the youth) "love the sinner, but not the sin"...
    I still take issue with that as an ethos, though, because - although it is arguably slightly better than teaching people to hate/judge the person directly - "the sin" is, in this case, a fact of the homosexual's life. Whether one believes that "the sin" in question constitutes sexual relationships specifically, or close personal relationships in general, to claim to love a person while simultaneously implying that they must deny their innate feelings of love and attraction and commit to celibacy, seems somewhat immoral.
    February 9th, 2014 at 01:07am
  • Alsoldey

    Alsoldey (230)

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    @ Alex; periphery.
    Trust me I still take issue with it too. That's why I added that last part.
    February 9th, 2014 at 02:16am
  • fogbound.

    fogbound. (100)

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    I think the reason why a lot of people turn away from religion is because of how we, as people, run it. So many people are disappointed, angry, and just annoyed with some views, which is totally understandable. But you have to remember that the fundamental belief behind Christianity in general is that we are saved. I am Catholic and I do believe in God. (I mean how else would we be here?) I do believe that Jesus was sent to save us and he has. The fundamental belief is that if you let Jesus into your heart, you are saved. Just live your life with God by your side, treat others how you would want to be treated, don't take anything for granted, and just know that you are made for great things. Those are my beliefs Smile
    March 7th, 2014 at 03:18pm
  • dear avery

    dear avery (660)

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    (I mean how else would we be here?)
    I could go on for days.
    I was raised Christian, but my personal views lean heavily towards agnosticism.
    March 9th, 2014 at 12:45am
  • fogbound.

    fogbound. (100)

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    @ elevoide.

    I totally respect that! I mean a lot of my friends are, but in my opinion and with all of the research and reading that I have done on the subject there are just some things that can't be explained. And my faith has really helped me through a lot.
    March 9th, 2014 at 01:46am
  • wxyz

    wxyz (240)

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    @ elevoide.

    I totally respect that! I mean a lot of my friends are, but in my opinion and with all of the research and reading that I have done on the subject there are just some things that can't be explained. And my faith has really helped me through a lot.
    Surely "can't be explained" would more likely lead to an agnostic conclusion?
    March 9th, 2014 at 09:47am
  • fogbound.

    fogbound. (100)

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    @ Alex; periphery.

    No, not necessarily. For example there have been countless of agnostic scientists. But many, many, I could list them but there are actually a lot who turn to Christianity when they study two things: Human DNA and Nature. Some things just cannot be explained from where they come from, why they do what they do, etc. And I believe it's God.
    March 9th, 2014 at 02:14pm
  • folie a dru.

    folie a dru. (1270)

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    @ Alex; periphery.
    I don't see why not having the answers would lead one to agnosticism. I know I don't have the answers. To me, that's a part of my faith.
    March 9th, 2014 at 05:09pm
  • wxyz

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    @ notoriety

    It seemed like you were implying that the lack of explanation for some things was a reason for believing in God as opposed to being an agnostic, which didn't make sense to me, that's all. I know that a lack of knowledge of certain things is compatible with any belief system, I guess I just misread some sort of causal link in your statement.
    March 9th, 2014 at 07:46pm
  • the god of thunder.

    the god of thunder. (300)

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    Oh man. :v I always thought I was a Christian by default (born into it, sunday school until puberty, family history of)... until I attended a weekend camp-like service with a Christian church here in Iceland. Now I don't know how to identify. The rigid beliefs of Christianity as following the Bible are so strict, in their beliefs of homosexuality being an overt sin, and women being made to follow the orders of their husbands, and the idea of sexual inferiority in general among females. The church I was with had a belief that every message of the Bible was valid and must be followed or else you aren't fulfilling Jesus' wishes, and that good deeds are not relevant unless they are done with the belief of Jesus.

    I was there with two really liberal Christians, who generally are almost the same as me, and we were sitting with the 25-year-old manager of this trip, asking him questions, and when homosexuality came up, he tried to describe how it was wrong by rubbing his fingers together like they were clashing penises and saying "This... it doesn't work." Facepalm Facepalm Facepalm I broke down into mortified laughter. Then he went on to say that there are two gay people in the church with him and they often sit and pray for those two. I think that's hoooorrriibblee. It is directly saying "your identity is wrong and sinful and must be fixed." That is so awful. They also talked about how people who don't believe in Christ are damned and it's their job to save people. How can you go around believing that the people who don't share your beliefs are these lesser, inferior souls who you are above and you can be noble and rescue them~~~? Uggh. It makes me so angry.

    Then there was also this idea that sexuality is sinful and it gets in the way of connecting with God, so every sexual act is losing a piece of yourself that you'll never get back, (ps. UNLESS you are bound by a piece of paper, then it is a-okay). I was a guest there so I didn't want to confront them, but I was in such a moral dilemma because I saw these beliefs placed unto 12 year old children so destructive and unhealthy. I believe in a higher power still, I think, and I would say it stems from my Christian background, but I can't identify the same as the people I was with this weekend. I don't see any love in their beliefs and think what I witnessed was just really foolish and cruel.
    April 14th, 2014 at 02:59pm
  • Kurtni

    Kurtni (10125)

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    I didn't list any of my experiences, so I'm not sure where this "yours v. my experience" thing is coming from. Like I said, I'm not speaking from my personal experiences, but the oppressive laws in Missouri, violations of rights and common hate crimes which is all documented, tangible evidence, as opposed to your annecedotal opinion of things being not that bad.
    Ray Valor:
    When I hear of many stories of murder, people being jumped/beat up, raped, mugged, etc for BEING an atheist or whatever, THEN I will agree.
    People are killed and assaulted for being gay, or Muslim, etc. Abortion is incredibly restricted in Missouri. It's perfectly legal to discriminate against gay people for things like housing and employment. From Todd Akin's "legitimate rape" comments to the rape sympathizers in Marryville, Missouri is a bad place to be a woman because of pervasive sexism driven by religious ideas of how women should behave. Sex education is awful and many times abstinence only, correlating with Missouri's high teenage pregnancy rate. Islamaphobia is so prevalent that our legislature actually took the time to ban Sharia law. Mosques are regularly vandalized. A large group of people tried to block a mosque from being built and when they failed after many court battles they burnt it to the ground. We have a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. In most bible belt states, there is a religious test that prevents Atheists from holding political offices. Atheists can and have been denied custody of their children because they don't practice a religion. I'm not talking about people simply dislking atheists, but religious culture that permeates everything. You seem to be viewing this as an issue of minor annoyances when people's rights are being violated and their safety jeopardized because there is a religious majority.
    Ray Valor:
    No, I can walk outside and I will not be harmed. I might be ridiculed, but better then having my head chopped off in Saudi Arabia.
    That's great for you, but not everyone has that safety.
    September 7th, 2014 at 07:58am
  • Zorua

    Zorua (100)

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    I'm a hardcore Christian and I love the community a lot, but I hate how woman-hating it can be sometimes. Like when we went to church camp or a trip the leaders would always tell the girls not to wear revealing clothing. Like, I'm sorry? My body will make the boys fall away from God? I'm sinful? My legs and boobs are oozing with Satan???

    They should be teaching men to respect women and focus on God.
    September 14th, 2014 at 04:05am
  • Lasairiona Berry

    Lasairiona Berry (150)

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    Zorua:
    I'm a hardcore Christian and I love the community a lot, but I hate how woman-hating it can be sometimes. Like when we went to church camp or a trip the leaders would always tell the girls not to wear revealing clothing. Like, I'm sorry? My body will make the boys fall away from God? I'm sinful? My legs and boobs are oozing with Satan???

    They should be teaching men to respect women and focus on God.
    I think it's less about how boys will react and more about respecting your body. Furthermore, why do you need to wear what is considered revealing clothing? Like, what's the motivation behind it? As a Christian woman, you're goal should be making a guy see Christ in you. But if your cleavage is out and your skirt or shorts is/are so tight we can see the dimple in your right butt cheek....is that guy seeing Christ or is he seeing your body?

    Yes, men are responsible for their own thoughts and should be able to see women as people and not objects. However, that does not mean that women are not responsible for helping out the cause. To be honest, what I'm wearing right now would probably be considered revealing. But I have the sense of mind not to wear something like this to church or on a church related trip. I wouldn't purposefully draw a guy's eyes to my boobs (or any other part of my body).

    Do not let your adorning be external--the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear--but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious 1 Peter 3:3-4

    The gentle and quiet thing isn't referring to being seen and not heard. But more to having the peace of God and a deep sense of the rest God gives.

    Again, a Christian guy should look at you and see Christ, but if he looks at you and tells you that your body is distracting him, one...take it as a compliment. Two, have enough respect for him and humility before God to change clothes. Less is not more. Less means you're showing off things that should be kept for your husband's eyes. (Or at least your significant other.) Do you think any guy you date or marry is going to be gleeful over the fact that other men get to see what's supposed to be special for and to him?

    And look at the flip side: if guys walk around shirtless or in their boxers all the time, are you're first thoughts about how much he loves Christ?

    ...I have a lot of feelings on this topic. I do agree that women should be able to dress in what makes them comfortable (and if that is a mini-skirt, tank top, and 6 inch heels...well...go for it). But I also firmly believe that we as women are not released from the responsibility of being aware of other's weaknesses.

    Romans 14:13-23 applies here. To love your neighbor as yourself involves respecting them. If they are thrown off by something you do....don't do it (or at least don't do it around them) because you respect them and their wishes/needs/desires/wants/etc.

    To wear what you want when you want, blatantly disregarding a genuine concern expressed by someone else about your clothing (and this applies to attitudes and hobbies too, not just clothes) is to look that person in the eye and say, "I don't care if this presents a problem in your walk with God. It's what I want." Like, what if they guy is getting over a porn addiction? And you're out there in a bikini or revealing clothing? He fell in the snare that is sin and instead of helping him out of the pit, you're shoving him back in.

    I know that illustration doesn't apply to all situations, but the principle is there. Instead of being used by God to show a guy all those fantastic things about yourself that point to the love of Christ, you're essentially being used by Satan to pull some potentially unsuspecting soul into sin. Buck up and be responsible so you can be blameless before God in this situation. If you remove the revealing clothing and the guy still looks at you like a piece of meat, that's on him. But you're working to be more like Christ, not more like the world.

    ...For real, shutting up this time.
    September 17th, 2014 at 02:06am
  • CallusedSilk

    CallusedSilk (100)

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    @ Lasairiona Berry
    Wasn't going to comment on this topic, but upon seeing your reaction, I absolutely have to. First of all, everyone's definition of 'revealing clothing' is different, and around the time the bible was written, women showing much of anything at all was considered pretty wild, so we're basing modern wardrobe choices on an ancient text and from someone's interpretation of it. Also, everyone's goal as a 'Christian woman' or 'Christian man', from what I remember in my time when I actually was one, is different. Is that guy seeing Christ if he can see any of her cleavage? Possibly not. He could also just be thinking dirty thoughts with everything covered too, and it's not her responsibility to keep his mind on the biblical prize.

    Once again, they're big boys. I'm pretty sure they can handle it, and it's called the real world. The fact of the matter is that most Christians I know are expected to actually be able to minister to people. The whole 'the power of boners was stronger' argument doesn't actually work when it comes to why they screwed up in their religion or couldn't keep their focus. There are going to be times when they're going to see women (religious and secular) that are in somewhat to extremely revealing clothing. Even Christ was tempted by things.

    Also, yes, technically I do think about God when a hot man has his shirt off and is in just boxers, because I know for a fact that the first words that come into my mind are always, "Thank you, Jesus."

    Being aware of someone else's weaknesses? Everyone has weaknesses and everyone's weaknesses are different. I've known people with extreme foot fetishes, but that doesn't mean I can never go barefoot in case I run into someone else that has one. Also, trust me on this, if a guy has a porn addiction? They're probably struggling to stay off their laptop, not having trouble avoiding looking at real life women in bikinis. It's probably a huge step forward for them if they've actually managed to get off google and kept their hands out of their pants for long enough to even make it somewhere where someone would be wearing a bikini.

    "He fell in the snare that is sin and instead of helping him out of the pit, you're pushing him back in."

    That is damn near poetry. I mean, it's wrong, but it's very well written and I applaud you at that. I'm on a diet. A very strict diet. If one of my coworkers brings in a dozen donuts for the rest of the coworkers, and I give into temptation and eat a donut? Heck, even if I just stare at the donut and consider eating it? The fact of the matter is that my coworker that brought in donuts? Super duper not at fault there. That's on me. Back to 'revealing' clothing though. Every denomination of Christianity has different standards for what is considered revealing, and when it comes to matters of the soul? They can take care of theirs and I'll take care of mine. That guy doesn't exactly get to get up to the pearly gates and when asked why he had lustful thoughts get to go, 'She made me think it'. Oh and just to make it clear? I do usually recommend people cover up in church, and not just because churches are notoriously drafty, but because I consider church to be a more 'formal' setting. Formal clothing in my mind is usually more conservative.
    September 17th, 2014 at 06:34am
  • Lasairiona Berry

    Lasairiona Berry (150)

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    @ CallusedSilk

    I know it could sound like I was taking the responsibility off the guy. Not the case. Men have a responsibility to keep their thoughts pure. At the base of it, it's about respect. Like I said. Yes, everyone has different definitions of revealing. But if your church sets a standard and you don't follow it? Or if there is an accepted definition? Whether you agree with those standards or definitions, if you attend that church or hang out with people who hold that standard and then disregard it because you wanna wear what you wanna wear, you're being disrespectful.

    By setting standards and giving clear definitions, the person, group, church, etc is explicity telling you what they believe is a stumbling block. Which goes back to Romans 14. In your diet analogy, if your cowokers know you're on a strict diet and bring in donuts, yes you have a responsibility to stay away from the donuts, but your coworkers can do a number of things to avoid becoming a stumbling block: a) just don't bring donuts b) get flavors you hate c) tell you their bringing in donuts, recognize that you're on a diet and provide an alternative. The last one is the biggest compromise. It's considerate of you while allowing everyone else to have what they want. The principle involved there is how I view the clothing debate. If someone at church tells you your clothes are revealing, evaluate the claim and make the necessary adjustments. Option A I think is most in line with the Romans 14 passage.

    Why would you knowingly tempt someone? Yes, Jesus was tempted. But how does that apply here? We all face temptation, but to be part of that temptation purposefully is, in my opnion, inconsiderate and sinful--the very opposite of loving your neighbor as yourself. Despite weakness, you're not going to continually subject yourself to temptation without at least attempting to flee it. But you're going to take part in flauting temptation in front of someone who expresses an issue with it? So in your example, go barefoot. But if someone tells you they like sucking toes amd seeing your feet is tempting them, put some shoes on because you respect that person and don't want to be the reason they fall back into something they're trying to escape. This is all based on the assumption that their struggling has been expressed to you. You have a responsibility as a decent human being to help them fight temptation. If that means you have to adjust your clothing around them, I don't see how that's a problem. And it points to a personal issue that you'd deliberately be so inconsiderate as to ignore tbeir discomfort or distress. If you're on the other side of it and tell someone that their clothing, attitude, behavior, etc makes you uncomfortable and they just tell you to deal with it because it's not their problem, you initially feel rejected and like you don't matter to them. Whatever your reaction afterward, that feeling of not being cared for stays with you. One way to help someone with a struggle is to stop adding to the problem. Be someone they can trust. From there you can help them get to the point where that clothing, attitude, behavior doesn't cause them issue. Back to your donut example, we go with option A and work toward option C. Society wants to start with C so they don't have to put themselves out at all.

    The porn addiction was an illustration. There are functioning addicts in this world, so assuming they're glued to their computer is stretching it. The principle of desensitization is the same. With our culture, men are consistently shown pictures, hear/see ads and music (videos) that portray women as objects. Yes, men have to fight that training and cultural acceptance of women as less than (as I say this, a sex ad using s women with a sultry voice comes on the radio). But as a godly woman, you're meant to stand apart. If clothing is how you express yourself, it should in part express that you are a child of the living God. And as a child of God, you're to love God and love your neghbor as yourself.

    My whole argument boils down to respect. If you're in a t-shirt and jeans....most like not consider revealing. The bikini? Yeah it's considered revealing. I think all of society agrees on that. The difference is the revealing quality praised or despised. Churches in general tend to see a bikini as a stumbling block. Does that mean no one in church wears them? Pfft, no. I know some godly women who wear bikinis and low cut tops. Would they wear those items on a church trip? No, because it's not situationaly appropriate.
    September 17th, 2014 at 08:07am
  • CallusedSilk

    CallusedSilk (100)

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    @ Lasairiona Berry
    I honestly am not sure what drives me crazier, the fact that you still assert that somehow we're all supposed to know who's going to be attempted and potentially protect their delicate sensibilities, or the fact that you've inadvertently called several of us indecent human beings simply because we don't agree with you. I can respect other people, but still have my wardrobe choices out in the real world not be a huge thing about whether it will offend anyone on the planet.

    You think t-shirt and jeans is automatically not considered indecent? Try living in a conservative town or going to an ultraconservative church. Sometimes they don't actually tell their members, but just whisper behind their back about how a woman wearing pants at all is indecent. Once again, in any analogy? Even if a dude comes up to me and tells me he wants to suck my toes? That just makes him extra creepy and does not mean I have any obligation to cover up my feet. My coworkers have no obligation to strive to find flavors I don't want just so I'm not tempted. It's not disrespectful for them to do that. How is it respectful for me to expect everyone to go out of their way for me? I contest that it's not.

    I do potentially think church retreats and church functions could both be seen as more formal settings, but that's about it. Also, if you're going to be in swimsuits, unless you're going to be just flat out wearing more than a swimsuit, pretty much all swimsuits could be construed as inappropriate by anyone if they're conservative enough.
    September 17th, 2014 at 06:09pm
  • Lasairiona Berry

    Lasairiona Berry (150)

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    @ CallusedSilk

    Did I sat we're supposed to make predictions and operate based off that? No. But if someone tells you they take issue with something and you basically ignore it because it doesn't fit with your agenda, how is that showing respect for that person?

    I do go to a conservative church. Women are expected to be in dresses or skirts. Dress pants are accepted but no jeans. Before this church, every church I went to, I wore jeans and a t-shirt. No one told me until I asked if it was a church preference. I made an observation. Yes, I know the church peeps might talk about me behind my back if I wear jeans, but if I decide to, that's my choice. However, because they have a clearly established standard of women not wearing jeans, I wear dresses out of respect for their preference.

    By all means, if you want to wear something your church leadership tells you is revealing, go for it. But be prepared to deal with the backlash or potential scrutiny. You do have a right to wear what you want. But if someone tells you they find it disrespectful or inappropriate, are you seriously going to tell them it's a personal problem and to grow up and get with the times?

    For me, that does speak of a deeper issue: you're not willing to put someone else before yourself for a momentary discomfort. What you want is more important. Like it's too much work to change an outfit for a few hours in order to maintain a relationship. Be honest and tell them you don't agree that's cool.

    I wasn't calling you a indecent human being for not agreeing. You can believe and feel what you want. If you took it that way, my apologies. However, I do feel that if you make a decision to go to a particular church or being in the company of a particular group of people and then get up in arms when they tell you that your clothing, behavior, attitude, or what have you doesn't meet their standards, you have two options: conply or remove yourself from the situation. I'm not saying it has to be quiet compliance. But if you make the choice to stay and are unwilling to change, you are deliberately causing strife in the situation.

    For the context in which this conversation started, if your church leadersgip tells something is revealing and you decide to continue involvment with that church, you change your clothes. If you don't, they have the right to say you're not permitted to take part in certain events. If you're not following the rules and standards set, are you really entitled to continue with the rest of the group
    who is?

    If you want to make a wild extrapolation from that idea, that's like a murder arguing that they have a right to kill who they want without going to jail. We as a society have established that murder is wrong. A citizen who doesn't agree and doesn't want to conform to that standard murders. He argues that he shouldn't be jailed because it's society's opinion but not his. He has a right to do what he wants.

    That's kind of how your argument sounds. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but it shouldn't affect me because I have the right to do, say, and wear what I want. Am I misunderstanding your argument there?

    I get that we agree that church is not the place for certain outfits. But the basis for our conculsions is different.

    My understanding of the Christian life in regards to dealing with authority figures or other Christians is that you follow along unless it's something that will lead you to sin. What's sin for you isn't necessarily sin for me in the finer details. Wearing a cami as a shirt isn't sinful to me, but at church it would be highly inappropriate, so I don't wear it there. Do I wear it outside of church, yes. A lot because I'm pretty lazy when it comes to getting dressed. Same with any other clothes.

    And you've mentioned "the real world" a couple times. We're talking about a church setting. The whole point of the church is to be set apart. We're supposed to be different from the rest of the world and presenting a lifestyle in which we don't have to conform to worldly standards in order to be happy. No matter what extreme a church takes that set apart mentality, if you make the intentional choice to be part of that church, you are agreeing to their standards and saying you will live by them. How you choose to act outside of church is up to you. But when with the church or church memebers, you've accepted a set of cultural norms and are expected to respect them or remove yourself from the group. I repeat, by all means express your disgreement with the norm, but intentionally and flagrantly disregarding their expressed standards and expetations is disrespectful.

    If you don't feel that it is, then that's your opinion. Which you are free to have. But if a church bars you from an activity because you don't agree, give them the same curtesy of expressing their opinion how they see fit.
    September 17th, 2014 at 08:15pm
  • Moira Regina

    Moira Regina (105)

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    I feel like modesty is something that will be argued until the end of time. The issue underlined in Zorua’s comment was that men are not singled out as capable individuals to wear revealing clothing, be sinful, etc. Men are sexual beings as well. They should also be held accountable and also told not to be ridiculous with the clothing just like the women. It's the Eve is the reason Adam sinned argument, which is antiquated and belongs in the Middle Ages along with it's the woman's fault that King Henry VIII had so many girls argument. Men are just as culpable as women.

    Whether your church is formal or casual, it is on private property. Your self-expression rules do not apply here. No one is going to tell you “Hey, you have to wear X,Y,Z” to a restaurant or a store. If you go to a concert or sporting game with a t-shirt with expletives on it, congratulations, you’re going to be pointed out and possibly kicked out. If you’re indecently exposed, you’re going to get arrested on top of that. It’s not about your self-expression or obligation to dress accordingly, but your acceptance by entering that property that you will adhere to the dress code of that privately owned property. You’re entitled to your opinion; they’re entitled to theirs. Different clothing for different times and places. The setting is inconsequential.

    God knows your heart. God knows your culture. Have peace that He gave everyone free will and the right to exercise it. Either way, you have a choice. The consequences just are a bonus package that comes along with it.
    September 18th, 2014 at 03:09am