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Summer Q&A (June 2013)

• Greg Boyd, Paul Eddy

During our weekend services on June 22-23 we hosted Q&A sessions with Greg Boyd, our Senior Pastor, and Paul Eddy, our Teaching Pastor. We included all three services, so enjoy listening to ALL the answers.

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Q&A – Saturday Evening

  1. If judgment is the opposite of Christ-like love, then what does Jesus’ righteous judgment look like?
  2. In regards to Spiritual warfare, why does God allow Satan and the powers to reign on Earth? Why doesn’t he put a stop to their reign now?
  3. When did dinosaurs roam this planet and how old is the Earth?
  4. I know that there are verses in the New Testament that many believe teach that all expressions of homo-sexuality are sin. I’m a committed, Bible-believing Christian, but I personally don’t interpret these verses to rule out a faithful, monogamous homo-sexual relationship. I was made to feel I should leave my previous evangelical church for expressing this conviction. Am I welcome at Woodland Hills when I hold this view? Can there be a “one-flesh” reality or relationship between a homo-sexual couple?
  5. How do you know God is real versus something created by people who are afraid of dying?
  6. If Jesus reveals an enemy-loving, non-violent God, why does Jesus tell parables where God is violent? Like the parable of the master of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18?
  7. Your emphasis on being willing to sacrifice to help others concerns me. Are there no circumstances where you’d be unwilling to risk dealing with someone who is unstable and dangerous? I struggle with my neighbor, who is crabby and uses drugs (which complicates things). How can we confront people peacefully, if they’re not so peaceful?

Q&A – Sunday 9am

  1. We know that we’re not supposed to gossip and judge, however, sometimes we get sucked into it by our good friends. Could you please give examples of ideas on what to say to your friends to stop this behavior? Also, do you say the same things to Christians and non-Christians?
  2. What is the condition of the dead, and the intermediate state, between death and resurrection? Are they conscious or asleep, and are they already separated into good and evil?
  3. Most evangelical churches in MN seem to take a public stance against the legalization of same sex marriage but we didn’t hear a word about it at Woodland Hills? Why this; and what is Woodland’s stance on this new law?
  4. Parenting seems to constantly involve judging the good and bad in our kids. How do we do this in a loving way?
  5. I am in my mid-thirties and I don’t know if I’ll ever get married. While I’m grateful for the self-control I’ve developed, I sometimes cry when I think about the possibility of never having sex. I know we all have a cross to bear and I just have to take it one day at a time, but it’s never easy.
  6. In light of the Kindred sermon series this spring, are we saying that Woodland Hills really is an Anabaptist church? If so, are we looking to make an official connection with an Anabaptist denomination?
  7. What is the Biblical stance regarding mind-altering drugs? How does this apply to the use of legal prescription drugs versus illegal drugs?

Q&A – Sunday 11am

  1. Why is the word “tithing” so taboo at Woodland Hills Church?
  2. Please talk about the dangers of watching TV shows about mediums and psychics, such as the TV show “Long Island Medium”
  3. If the Holy Spirit dwells in all believers, including pastors, then how is it that you can put 10 pastors in a room, ask a question, and get different answers? I would think that the Holy Spirit would reveal the answer to all of them.
  4. Is it wrong to listen to music such as rock and roll music which seems to have great beats and guitar runs, but at times glorifies womanizing, drugs, and alcohol?
  5. Rob Bell has recently stated in public that he now believes that homosexuality is a viable lifestyle for Christians. What is Woodland Hills’ perspective on this?
  6. Is sexual sin the same as any other sin?
  7. If the story of the snake in the Garden in Genesis 3 doesn’t need to be taken literally, what stops people from applying that same logic to the resurrection of Jesus? Why not say the resurrection is just a “literary framework”?
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5 thoughts on “Summer Q&A (June 2013)

    Nicolas says: Sunday June 30, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    I like your answer to the question on homosexuality at 20min. Yet, would you allowa someone who lives in a homosexual relationship to be an active part of your ministry on stage. eg. leading worship or even teaching? I think if don’t fully integrate people, we still make people categories, or at least distinguish between bad and not so bad sins.

    Reply
    Jacob says: Monday July 1, 2013 at 7:36 am

    Well going down that line of thought is a slippery slope. I realize that Paul is not Jesus but he wrote in 1 Cor 5:9-11 (NIV) “I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.” In my Mennonite upbringing I have seen that verse misused to the point that any disagreements were cause for separation. Gal 6:1 Paul talks about how those who are “spiritual” should restore the fallen. Our goal in the Kingdom of God should be to call people up out of the pit into a life of wholeness. We have to be willing to enter the wounds of peoples lives find the source of the pain and speak healing into their hearts. They will always have scars like all of us do. But our scars should be proof of our Fathers amazing grace not a reason for disqualification. Scars are a part of our testimony and its an integral part of how we overcome. They say what we were but not who we are!!

    Reply
    Dave Pritchard says: Monday July 1, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    Nicholas,

    Two things, no three. How do you know that this is not already the case at WHC and why would that need to be made publically important? As an external “Podrishioner” of Woodland Hills, I have been totally inspired and spiritually encouraged and pumped-up by both Greg and Paul’s teachings. Personally, I could absolutely care less whether they or anyone else on the Ministry Team there is Gay, Straight, Bi, Transgender or Otherwise – it makes no difference to me whatsoever and is completely irrelevant.
    The third thing is, that these incessant “Between a rock and hard place” kind of questions, designed to entrap or catch people out in a contradiction of their faith, are about as creatively concrete as warm Jell-O! So, pleeeeeeaasssse!

    Ya know, years ago while at Art School, I was invited to Church and a Bible Study by someone who was “Transgender”. There, I heard the Gospel clearly for the first time and later gave my life to Christ. Now, years later in retrospect, I Thank God, Praise God for them and for the fact that they were there for me and actually took the time to share what was in their heart and point me in the right direction!
    So perhaps the better question would have been – “Does ones sexual orientation have anything to do with the sincere delivery of the Gospel?”

    Honestly, what would you have them do – Start listing the sexual orientation of those leading Prayer & Discussion groups? As if…….!!!! Sorry if I come across a bit aggressive here Bro, but I love You in the Lord and “Gay” people too, and that ain’t never gonna change!!!!

    Shalom

    Reply
    Andy says: Thursday July 25, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    “The Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:17

    The Law is easily understood. It is simple but ruthless. It can only condemn. The simplicity of the Law means that simple people wield it ruthlessly. The church at large has swung that battle axe for ages.

    But truth+grace is dynamic. Truth+grace can still tell the difference between right and wrong without destroying the person in whom both extremes of morality are raging. Truth+grace says “I do not condemn you. Go and sin no more.”

    I sincerely applaud the way WH is dealing openly with the topic of homosexuality–its high time the Church drops the battle axe of the Law and starts offering the true Gospel. But then again, the Gospel isn’t for everyone. Even Jesus said, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate… even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.” In other words, Jesus has nothing for me until he is everything to me. If a person doesn’t want righteousness more than anything else, Jesus can’t help them. The Church must not re-define righteousness to include anything a person wants to do or be.

    Let me put it in personal terms: I have struggled with addiction to pornography since adolescence. But through all the years, I have never lost the understanding that porn is sinful and destructive. The Spirit of God is always calling me out of my addiction. I know I am saved by Jesus because I still know what purity is and I want to be pure, not because my behavior is always pure (1 John 3:3). Grace is working with truth to call me out. By itself, the Law condemns, leaving me hopeless. I need grace, but it has to be fused with truth or I have no impetus to change and I am left in my destructive sin.

    Greg said it in the message today, “Sometimes in order to ascribe worth to people you have to protect them from themselves.” It is not love to accept a person’s disordered behavior just because they think its OK. If a person is determined to live in a disordered way, Jesus responds like he did to the rich young ruler–he lets him walk away. He didn’t chase after him–not to condemn nor to plead. Neither did the father chase after his son in the parable of the Prodigal. But he did watch and wait eagerly for his son’s repentant return. How often did Jesus say, “If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear”? And as Oswald Chambers points out, whenever Jesus spoke of discipleship, it was always prefaced with an “if”. There is no compulsion with Jesus, but he doesn’t water down the truth either.

    You cannot force a person to want righteousness. But it is a mistake to re-define righteousness to make it more inclusive. Salvation begins with wanting righteousness and not wanting sin. The free gift of Jesus is what converts my desire for righteousness into actual righteousness. But if I decide to just accept sin and call it righteousness, I’ve got a big problem. I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m not saved–where sin abounds, grace abounds even more–but I’ve got a BIG problem!

    I believe our stance toward those caught in the sin of homosexuality ought to be the same as it is for every sinner. The image is that of Jesus as he approached Jerusalem (Luke 19:41-42). We need to hold out our arms, with tears of anguished love in our eyes, saying, “Come and find the things that make for peace.”

    Reply
    Marlys says: Sunday August 4, 2013 at 5:53 am

    I have always been taught we would have new bodies when we arrive in heaven. God is omnipresent- will we be a force of energy and be able to ‘fly’ to and fro, not having a body as we know a body to be?

    Reply

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