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"Pro-Life" Movement Titan has change of heart, wants Trump voted out

Discussion in 'American Politics' started by ArmenianJohn, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. ArmenianJohn

    ArmenianJohn Politically Liberal Christian Fundamentalist

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    This is not brand-new news, so some of you may have heard of this before, but it is important to show that there are some Evangelicals who take their faith seriously to the point that they are listening to the Holy Spirit's guidance on the issue of supporting Trump.

    Rev. Rob Schenck, is an Evangelical minister who was one of the biggest drivers of the Pro-Life movement, especially the radical factions, by his own admissions. He has admitted to doing things to harm and dehumanize his political opponents, things which he now recognizes and realizes were sinful. They would throw fetuses and fetus parts at their enemies, call them all sorts of names and identify them as devils and "evil", etc.

    He has since come to reckoning with the Holy Spirit about his past and now uses his energies and resources to fight against what he himself was and helped create. In doing so, he has lost most of his earthly "successes" as well as his standing among many "evangelical" circles, organizations, etc. He has lost friends. But he has gained the ability to sleep at night, he has gained the inner peace all Christians should have.

    From what I see about his coming around to his Christian values, the biggest lessons he has learned, which go hand in hand, are humility (not being prideful) and the dangers of an unbridled tongue. The Bible warns about both of these things. His experience is not so much about issues like abortion, gay marriage, etc. but about the higher virtues that drive a person to behave a certain way about whatever side the y take on whatever issue. Because he is still anti-abortion, like many Christians; but he now is also cognizant of the fact that committing sin in order to fight abortions is no excuse for committing that sin - which many Christians also know and live by.

    Not hard to understand why he has flipped completely against Trump when you know his epiphany on the dangers of the unbridled tongue.

    Here are some articles by and about him, and some videos as well. It's good to see this, it is refreshing and encouraging for Christians to see this and know that defending and supporting sin is not excusable by fighting another sin.

    Why This Evangelical Minister is Voting for Joe Biden — Reverend Rob Schenck
    Why I will Not Vote for Donald Trump — Reverend Rob Schenck





     
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  2. 98cwitr

    98cwitr Lord forgive me Staff Member Red Team - Moderator Supporter

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    Notice how abortion took a back seat in those two links above to other issues and condemning conservative Christian supporters seems to be apparent in his writing. Not so militant about it after all it seems. There's a smattering of progressive lingo in those writings that make me wonder just where this man has gone.

    Biden/Harris have been vocal about ensuring abortion remains alive and well.

    here the pastor even seems to make a soft case for abortion, and how he had a "change of heart" on the issue: Why This Evangelical Minister Had to Re-think Abortion — Reverend Rob Schenck

    But even the Didache 2:2 is clear...abortion is wrong and to kill one's own child is a grave sin indeed.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
  3. Archivist

    Archivist Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Even if Roe were to be overturned--and while I think it could be limited I don't think it would be overturned--that just turns it over to the states. Remember that many states have statutes, constitutional provisions or court decisions that specifically protect abortion.
     
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  4. Speedwell

    Speedwell Well-Known Member

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    Why do you think that? Has he renounced the belief that abortion is a sin? Or does he just recoil from the idea that abortion should be used as a lever to obtain political power for a religious sect?
     
  5. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    Never heard of him.
     
  6. Archivist

    Archivist Senior Veteran Supporter

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    The OP says that “he is still anti-abortion.”
     
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  7. ArmenianJohn

    ArmenianJohn Politically Liberal Christian Fundamentalist

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    It's not apparent to me. Not giving the issue of abortion a front seat and making it sin #1 doesn't mean you're making it less than any other sins either, and Schenck is not putting things "before" it. He's just putting that issue in its rightful place instead of continuing to idolize it as he has in the past. And he IS a Christian conservative, so I don't see him condemning himself. I just see him focusing on the "Christian" part of his identity over the "conservative" part of it.

    Yes, after all those decades of being militant and finally realizing how wrong he was he's not militant anymore. It's a great testimony.

    The Christian lingo in those writings makes it pretty clear to me where he has gone (back to).

    Yes, they have. And Trump has been vocal about putting the economy ahead of lives, ceasing help to the poor, needy, sick, and elderly. And Trump and all the Republicans have spoken clearly with their actions by never doing anything about abortion other than keeping the issue alive in order to bargain for votes from people. One of Schenck's points is that even IF the deal Evangelicals made with the conservatives were morally good they are not getting what they bargained for, i.e. they are never getting their way re abortion. And he's right.

    I see his change of heart throughout everything, but I'm not seeing him making a "soft case for abortion"..

    That's nice. But the Didache is neither:
    1) A Science boook
    NOR
    2) Scripture

    So you might as well be quoting the label of a Cracker Jack box.
     
  8. FireDragon76

    FireDragon76 this statement is not true Supporter

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    He's an ordained minister in a small, conservative Wesleyan denomination.

    He used to be very involved in anti-abortion activism, including working with Operation Rescue.

    I have been following the Rev. Rob Shenck ever since I saw a documentary he was in, about guns in the American Evangelical subculture. He's been rethinking his alignment with the Religious Right for the last few years, and has become concerned about the Christian witness in the world.
     
  9. MIDutch

    MIDutch Well-Known Member

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    Meh. I don't believe him. It's really easy to want trump voted out and be "concerned about the Christian witness in the world" when trump has basically already given you EXACTLY what you've been working for for much of your religious career, a 6-3 Christian, right-wing US Supreme Court that will, in all likelihood give you what you've been wanting all these years; overturning Roe v Wade, complete roll back of LGBTQ protections and progress, the transfer of public funds to rich private Christian schools and an abandonment of help for inner city public schools, the reintroduction of Christianity into public education to the exclusion of Jews/Muslims/Buddhists/Hindus/atheists/etc., the ability for businesses and individuals to freely discriminate against groups of people based on "religious grounds", etc., et., etc..
     
  10. FireDragon76

    FireDragon76 this statement is not true Supporter

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    That's really an uncharitable interpretation of his actions.

    The Rev. Shenck's process of distancing himself from the more radical elements of the Christian right began some time ago. In 2010 he opposed attempts by some Evangelicals to organize a burning of the Quran, for instance. He believes in the dignity of all human beings, including LGBT persons (another area where he has broken with many Evangelicals).

    I know that the writings of the German pastor, ethicist, and theologian, Dietrich Bonhoeffer have been having an influence over the Rev. Shenck (he's even a founding member of an organization dedicated to promulgating his ideas). I suspect that is what is causing him to break from other Evangelicals. I know in my own case, familiarity with his works lead me to question my own religious commitments years ago, and I could not find a home in more reactionary Christian churches as a result.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2020
  11. 98cwitr

    98cwitr Lord forgive me Staff Member Red Team - Moderator Supporter

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    It seems to me progressive Christianity is making a real comeback from the 1910s. The issue to me seems that it is members of the Church calling for a psuedo-theocracy where the state is charged with doing the work of the Church. This shouldn't be.
     
  12. 98cwitr

    98cwitr Lord forgive me Staff Member Red Team - Moderator Supporter

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    I can no longer apply the label of "conservative" to him. His writing and position seems very "progressive"

    The saying is true: You become what you hate.

    In a contemporary sense, you're right, but this has not always been so.

    The economy affects lives in vast ways. I cannot honestly decouple the two.

    Not mutually exclusive. I think it's both.

    Doesn't have to be either to give us concrete insight into the early church, her leaders, and their way of thinking.
     
  13. FireDragon76

    FireDragon76 this statement is not true Supporter

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    I think you are getting too caught up in a false dichotomy, either somebody is an Evangelical just like you ("conservative"), or they are a "progressive". Rev. Shenck is not a religious progressive like somebody like Tony Jones or Rob Bell, he's an Evangelical in a conservative Christian church that has disagreements about the political implications of his religious beliefs.

    For one thing, he is not part of the typical evangelical tribe in terms of his background. His family comes from New Jersey and from a Reformed Jewish heritage. There are actually a fair number of conservative Evangelical Protestants that are closer to him in that respect, they may be Black, Latino, or Asian-American and simply don't resonate with the cultural grievances of conservative, white Evangelicals, and as a consequence, don't subscribe to that kind of politics.
     
  14. 98cwitr

    98cwitr Lord forgive me Staff Member Red Team - Moderator Supporter

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    If I may be frank, I cannot wrap my head around how a conservative can vote for Biden. It's like a lion on a vegan diet. If I was an anti-Trump conservative because I didn't like him as a person (which doesn't make much sense because conservatives have a Myers-Briggs tendency to vote policy over personality (thinking vs. feeling)) I'd simply either vote 3rd party or not vote for the POTUS position.

    Not sure why you're bringing race into it...there are conservatives in every racial group.
     
  15. Bobber

    Bobber Well-Known Member

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    So what's this....some type of hit piece on social conservative Pro-Life Evangelicals. Look I've known lots of Pro-Life Evangelicals who would NEVER, EVER, EVER do what you described above and it's nonsense to try to leave the impression that it's somewhat standard conduct which I think your piece tries to do. If he did what he described above especially in the last couple of lines he most certainly was a disturbed individual which knew not what type of spirit he was of. Again NEVER and I mean NEVER would 99.999 Pro-Life Christians EVER do what you described above.
     
  16. FireDragon76

    FireDragon76 this statement is not true Supporter

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    He was involved in Operation Rescue which was one of the more militant groups that believed in physically blocking and confronting abortion providers and women at clinics. This stuff was commonplace until the late 90's when the government started putting exclusion zones in front of clinics.
     
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