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Show Notes - Episode 71

July 18, 2021

Episode 71

 

 

You know, when most evangelicals – particularly White Evangelicals and Christian Nationalists use the term liberty, I really don't think they know what it means. It's something that applies to everyone, not just a few, and certainly not just them.

 

[Intros]

 

And this time around we're continuing the thought from last week and looking at the subject of religious liberty, specifically how evangelicals in particular weaponize the concept to achieve their own ends even to the point of tainting the very message of the constitution in the process.

 

[CBB/Patreon]

 

Let's start out by answering the question, “What is religious liberty?”

 

Here's how the ACLU answers that question:

“The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” As enshrined in the First Amendment, religious freedom includes two complementary protections: the right to religious belief and expression and a guarantee that the government neither prefers religion over non-religion nor favors particular faiths over others. These dual protections work hand in hand, allowing religious liberty to thrive and safeguarding both religion and government from the undue influences of the other.”

 

My primary sources for this episode are two articles on americanprogress.org, [both cited in the show notes].

 

It is significant to note that most Americans don't believe that there is any current threat to religious liberty in America, but when you mix together their signature cocktail of irrational thinking, hopeless bigotry, and crippling paranoia, you can convince 69 percent of White Evangelicals that there is.

 

Sixty-nine percent. More than two out of three.

 

44 percent of White Evangelicals polled also think Muslims face religious discrimination and that seems like a high number until one realizes that it's largely them doing the discriminating. In that case, less than half doesn't seem all that high.

 

The perception of victimization among White Evangelicals pales in comparison to the actual discrimination exacted on anyone they don't like.

 

“Analysis of FBI hate crime data from 2017 reveals that almost 80 percent of all incidents of religiously motivated hate crimes that year were motivated by anti-Jewish or anti-Muslim bias. Yet both the executive and judicial branches of government have prioritized the alleged discrimination faced by some white evangelical Protestants over the outsized number of threats that other groups face.”

 

Since the religious right started aggressively representing itself in US politics, the weaponization of religious liberty as a means of forcing a secular society to adopt specifically evangelical ideals has gained an alarming amount of momentum. It started with the establishment of Jerry Falwell's Moral Majority, and has become a juggernaut that has successfully used every branch of government to do everything from denying rights of all description to LGBTQ people to deciding who deserves to be an adoptive parent, to protecting super spreader events during a global pandemic.

 

Weaponization is not an overstatement here. And not only would evangelical activists who support things like suppression of gay rights agree, they would tell you proudly that this description is accurate. The constant paranoid delusion of “us vs. them” coupled with their need to “evangelize” form the foundation of many attempts to exploit religious liberty as a means of making life more comfortable for themselves.

 

Many evangelicals would argue that imposing perceived biblical morals on how we behave toward and interact with each-other is a manifestation of the Great Commission. Many foolishly think that if they can get people to behave in a way that their God would approve of, that it would somehow lead to more people adopting their religious views. Usually, though, the responses range from indifference to anger to counter-activism to protect civil liberties.

 

For the most part, though, the motivation isn't anywhere near as selfless as promoting the Gospel. More often than not, it's about stopping people from doing things they personally consider icky or picking on them for having vaginas. Oh, and also suppressing things that disprove their beliefs outright like... science. Hence the assertion of “religious liberty” when they try to define “traditional families” and “biblical marriage,” or refuse to make a wedding cake for a same sex couple, or attempt to deny women birth control or vital health services, or only teach creationism in Christian homeschooling curricula and so on.

 

The Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (AmericanProgress.org)

 

Twenty-five years ago, the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) was signed into law to clarify and expand upon the right to religious liberty. RFRA outlines that the government “should not substantially burden religious exercise without compelling justification” and that it should only do so if it furthers a compelling governmental interest in the least restrictive way possible. The purpose of this law is “to protect the free exercise of religion” while clearly defining and more robustly protecting the right of religious liberty for all Americans. It passed with widespread, bipartisan support and was triumphed among faith communities, civil rights advocates, and politicians alike. Since the passing of the federal RFRA, 21 states have mirrored the federal statute to adopt similar legislation.

 

In 2014, however, the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby marked a major shift in the interpretation of religious exemptions from religiously neutral laws. Rather than simply protecting the rights of religious people, RFRA was expanded and misused to discriminate.

 

How? Let's have a look... starting with the case in question. It's a clear example of a corporation exploiting religious liberty to fuck with people's healthcare for no logical reason.

Exploiting Religious Liberty in Healthcare

 

The problem with the ruling in Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby is that it applied the same rights to corporations as to individuals, allowing two companies – Conestoga Wood Specialties and Hobby Lobby the right to free exercise of religion. Let's be clear: The U.S. constitution never, EVER made any such accommodation and there is no unbiased way to interpret anything it says to allow a corporation to be viewed as an individual. And yet, the ruling allowed the owners of those companies to apply their religious beliefs to decisions to rescind their employees' access to birth control as part of the company-funded health insurance. Access to which those employees are entitled under federal law, but which legislation during the 45th U.S. presidential administration makes OK for employers to deny. Source: https://cdn.americanprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/ReligiousLibertyReport.pdf?_ga=2.188268460.541696177.1626223122-655645505.1626134826

 

The Supreme Court ruling affected thousands of employees. It also broadened the scope of RFRA protections afforded to for-profit corporations like Hobby Lobby and expanded the use of religious exemptions by corporations.

 

The legacy of the Hobby Lobby decision continue[s] as religious liberty is misused to discriminate against vulnerable communities, such as religious minorities, nonreligious people, people of color, women, and the LGBTQ community.

 

Source: https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/religion/reports/2019/04/11/468041/religious-liberty-no-harm/

 

We're going to take evangelicals out of the hot seat for just a minute and talk about Catholic hospitals. Even though Catholics and evangelicals are diametrically opposed in key areas of doctrine, they agree in some very toxic areas, not the least of which being in their respective opinions about women and how it's OK to control a woman's reproductive life. Lots of Catholic hospitals deny key contraceptive services, manifesting in many ways, but particularly notable in the denial of tubal ligation services to women who want them. These procedures are most effective when performed just after delivery so if a woman delivers in a catholic hospital she might not have that as an option.

 

“Well then just don't go to a Catholic hospital, right?”

 

Just a couple problems:

 

  • 1 in 6 Hospital beds in America are in Catholic hospitals

  • Catholic hospitals don't always identify themselves all that well - “A New York Times analysis of 652 websites of U.S. Catholic hospitals found that on nearly two-thirds of the websites, “it took more than three clicks from the home page to determine that the hospital was Catholic.” And in many cases, hospitals are portraying themselves more secularly by removing religious icons and imagery and by changing their names. For example, San Francisco-based Catholic Healthcare West changed its name to Dignity Health in 2012, and as a result, patients may not be aware that they are seeking services at a Catholic hospital.”

 

And the problems that arise for women who use these hospitals could go even further with limited or even restricted access to certain services and procedures revolving around beliefs about abortion. There need to be more regulations regarding how Catholic hospitals go about identifying themselves. Until that happens, vital and necessary services will continue being denied to women who simply don't know that they are walking into a situation where they will not receive the care or services they expect.

 

Our state does more to regulate how marijuana dispensaries promote their businesses than they do to regulate how private or religious hospitals identify themselves.

 

But let's remember that evangelicals don't have clean hands in this arena by a longshot. Look at Hobby Lobby. That decision was a direct assault on women's rights to manage their reproductive health and that ruling was the result of evangelicals taking their misogynistic agenda all the way to the Supreme Court.

 

Exploiting Religious Liberty to Control Women

 

Women's Rights (directly from the ACLU)

  • Religiously affiliated schools firing women because they became pregnant while not married

  • Business owners refusing to provide insurance coverage for contraception for their employees

  • Graduate students, training to be social workers, refusing to counsel gay people

  • Pharmacies turning away women seeking to fill birth control prescriptions

  • Bridal salons, photo studios, and reception halls closing their doors to same-sex couples planning their weddings

 

Then there's the whole Hobby Lobby thing. At the time, the Obama administration stepped in and made contraceptives available to everyone whether the employer included them in insurance coverage or not, but of course the high-quality humans of the Trump administration turned around and applied a bit of misogyny to the situation just about two years later.

 

An article from just about a year ago on healthaffairs.org explains it this way:

Employers that object to the coverage of contraceptives for religious or moral reasons can decline to cover contraceptives for employees or students. The accommodation process—which enabled employees and students of objecting employers to access contraceptives without cost-sharing—is now optional, meaning many women will have to look elsewhere for contraceptive coverage and potentially pay out-of-pocket for this medical care. Some women may go without access to contraceptives at all.”

 

In other words, the option is still there in the ACA, but employers can basically OPT OUT even though it costs them nothing. Even though they aren't providing anything. They can say, “nope, we don't want this stuff making its way through our organization at all and CUT OFF ACCESS making it necessary to either apply for Obamacare or go through other independent channels, which largely defeats the purpose of not paying out of pocket. The same women who can't afford to pay out of pocket also can't afford to buy their own insurance. So yeah, companies can choose not to facilitate the transaction by refusing to have birth control channeled through their healthcare systems. Even though it costs them nothing. And is none of their business. Fuck you, Donald Trump. For so, so, so many reasons... but first and foremost for being SO good at emulating the qualities of these people's god.

 

But before I get a little too hot under the collar over that issue, let's look at another huge area of discrimination where government facilitates the weaponization of religious liberty...

 

Foster and Adoptive Parents

 

The federal government isn't the only entity that can play this game with impunity. Religious liberty has been used to discriminate in numerous ways at state level, too, particularly in taxpayer-funded child welfare programs including adoption and foster care. In true Hobby Lobby fashion, some state laws provide avenues for faith-based child welfare providers to deny opportunities for same-sex couples or LGBTQ individuals to foster or adopt.

 

[Between 2016 and 2019] seven states have passed laws to allow taxpayer-funded child welfare programs to refuse to work with LGBTQ prospective parents if they assert a refusal based on religious reasons.”

 

Also, in 2019, the Trump administration basically made it OK for states to ignore federal discrimination rules as long as they hide behind religion when they do it. And they can circumvent the rules and still get federal funding, a blatant violation of the separation of church and state.

 

As a result, prospective foster parents from Jewish, Catholic, and other non-Protestant Christian backgrounds have been denied the opportunity to welcome foster children into their homes.”

 

45's administration claims that the move advances religious liberty. It doesn't. It does just the opposite. It condones the violation of the religious liberty of prospective adoptive parents for not being evangelical. It's the same mentality that makes people refuse to wear masks because it violates their liberty but lends no deference to the fact that others are potentially being harmed by their non-compliance. Only their liberty matters. Only their side can be right. Only their point of view is valid. And having the backing of the federal government all but guaranteed that their errant sense of right would stay firmly in place. No wonder they went so batshit when their miscreant messiah lost.

 

Some state laws allow child welfare programs to refuse certain medical treatments and services to any domestic structure they don't like. According to the Human Rights Campaign:

“Parents can be rejected because the agency has an objection to them for any reason, including interfaith couples, single parents, married couples in which one prospective parent has previously been divorced, or other parents to whom the agency has a religious objection.” Source: https://assets2.hrc.org/files/assets/resources/licenses-to-discriminate-child-welfare-2017.pdf

 

And since I will never be able to make a compelling argument to these people in any way that revolves around simply being decent, compassionate human beings who emulate the perceived charitable qualities of their savior, I'll put it in terms they actually understand and care about: money.

 

“Taxpayers save nearly $29,000 per year for every child that is adopted from foster care and therefore does not age out of the child welfare system.”

Actually, why would they even care about that when they teach people to tithe on their gross? They can collect the tithe AND deprive the child of a loving, nurturing home environment. That will REALLY make them happy!

 

I also found this interesting (from the same source)...

“While adoption and foster care are primarily regulated by the states, many federal laws and regulations apply to child welfare activities, as well as state child welfare programs that receive federal funding. As a result, state agencies and other adoption and foster care providers receiving federal funding are subject to federal laws and regulation, including non-discrimination requirements on the basis of race, color, and national origin. However, there are no such non-discrimination requirements when it comes to sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status.”

 

How convenient, huh?

 

But one of the major problems that is only exacerbated by the existence of these hate-fueled loopholes is the impact on LGBTQ youth. Many teens who wind up in foster care systems are there because they are LGBTQ and have been rejected by their families, and they often find themselves in abusive treatment within the system over their sexual orientations. And, the very agencies that are supposed to be protecting them can deny them various services and treatments because they are LGBTQ. This is ony problematic in a handful of states right now, but any of them can adopt policies like this and still maintain their funding.

 

Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado

 

Another landmark court case that made it legal to weaponize religious liberty as a means of perpetuating pointless hate came in the form of this 2017 Supreme Court case.

 

 

Charlie Craig and David Mullins sought to purchase their wedding cake at Masterpiece Cakeshop in Colorado, yet the baker refused to sell the cake after realizing that they were a same-sex couple. The Trump administration did not play a neutral role in determining whether the right to free speech permits businesses to discriminate in this case.73 Through an amicus brief, the Department of Justice urged the U.S. Supreme Court to side with the baker, despite standing civil rights laws.”

 

The simple fact of the matter is that most people in America to whom faith means anything at all oppose all forms of discrimination and many, many churches out there have become very outwardly and sincerely welcoming of people of all imaginable genders and sexual orientations. See, they understand that these are people. They further understand that Jesus flat out didn't have an opinion about any of this; only some of his crackpot followers did. I mean, his father clearly did, but it wasn't enough of a concern for Jesus to ever once say ANYTHING about one orientation being morally superior to another. Period.

 

Polling has consistently shown that a strong majority of Americans believe that businesses should not be allowed to deny services to potential customers based on gender identity or sexual orientation.”

 

And this view is mirrored in various Supreme Court decisions that communicate the message that religious liberty stops where harm to individuals begins. In the case of Masterpiece v. Colorado, the Justice Department literally argued for the right to discriminate. And while the impact of this case may not have made it across-the-board legal to discriminate against members of the LGBTQ community, it still allowed it to happen in this instance.

 

Discrimination Against Muslims

 

The Supreme Court also sided with 45 when he tried to implement a travel ban on Muslims. I thought all religions in this country were supposed to enjoy their liberty, but apparently if you're a seething bigot with a large band of red-hat-wearing sycophants and a powerful judicial body that leans toward your opinions on everything absent of any sound interpretation of the constitution whose statutes they are sworn to uphold, you can impose whatever restrictions you want. Our Supreme Court, as it exists right now, is a caricature of justice that accentuates all the racist, homophobic, and xenophobic qualities of our favorite insane religion and is one of the few footholds that evangelicals have within our government.

 

What They Really Want

 

So what do these people really want? Why is it such a priority to weaponize religious liberty? The really scary part of this isn't in what they do or choose not to do as a result of their religious convictions, it's the motivation behind all the things we've talked about so far.

 

It should come as no surprise, but the real agenda here is to eradicate religious liberty for any religion that isn't evangelical Christianity, coupled with creating a system where people either agree with them or are forced to do things the way they would. They wouldn't use birth control so you can't. They don't like the idea of hormone therapies for trans people, so they simply withhold them. Or make the people (and that's what they are... people) jump through some very costly hoops to maintain access to them. The devaluation of human life in favor of their own selfish agendas is truly appalling.

 

While the Trump administration claims to be in pursuit of religious liberty, it has instead prioritized a specific set of conservative Protestant Christian beliefs over all others. Its efforts have extended far beyond the precedents set by both Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, which expanded who is eligible for RFRA protections and how they will be granted,71 and Trinity Lutheran Church v. Cromer, which the Trump administration has attempted to expand in cases that pertain to when the government can or cannot exclude religious organizations from funding.”

 

I'm not a fan of any religion, but as a secular humanist I recognize the need for religious tolerance. I also recognize the concept of not punishing the many for the actions of the few. And just so we're clear, there are as many Evangelical extremists out there as there are Muslim extremists. Probably more. Extremism exists in all religions.

 

I want to end off by quickly spotlighting ten things based on a list compiled by AmericanProgress.org. These are what they consider must-know concepts about religious liberty, many of which we touched on or alluded to already (and some that I'm going to paraphrase just a little here):

 

1. Religious liberty is alive and well in America.

 

And the public knows it. Catholics, white mainline Protestants, minority Protestants, and Christians who identify as unaffiliated all agree. It seems that only extremist sects of Evangelicalism seem to disagree.

 

2. The government requirement that employers include contraceptive coverage in their health care plans does not threaten religious liberty.

 

The Health and Human Services regulation provides a religious exemption to houses of worship and related religious institutions.

 

...and they respond to this exemption by turning their noses up at them for no logical reason aside from the fact that it leaves them unable to control what people, particularly women, do with their bodies.

 

Moreover, religiously affiliated institutions like hospitals, schools, and charities that object to birth control will not have to pay for contraceptive coverage because of an additional accommodation the administration offers.

 

...except that with these people it isn't about paying for it. It's about exerting the power to deny it.

 

This policy protects the religious liberty of institutions, as well as that of female employees who use contraception in accordance with their conscience and values.

 

3. Marriage equality laws do not threaten religious liberty. The states that have passed marriage equality laws have all included religious protections in their laws exempting clergy from performing same-sex marriages and granting immunity from lawsuits to religious institutions for refusing to provide goods and services related to same-sex marriage. In other words, no one is forcing a minister with strong convictions to do anything they think goes against the tenets of their faith. It's up to same sex couples to find ministers and officiants who share their values. I am personally fine with this.

 

4. The government is not waging a war on religion. In fact, certain religious organizations, including a number of catholic organizations like hospitals and homeless shelters are doing really well in terms of government support. Federal support of Catholic organizations in particular has always been high. And with the sheer number of times the government has sided with the wrong side of the religious liberty issue just in the past few years, the notion that our government is somehow anti-religion is absurd. Any good secular society embraces religion as an outlet for the pursuit of happiness among the adherents of the religion.

 

5. Religious liberty includes both the freedom to worship and practice one's faith, and freedom from government establishment of religion. Remember our conversation last week about the First Amendment? It contains a free exercise clause and an establishment clause, both of which are essential for that balance to be maintained. No one should be pressured by the government into adopting religious beliefs or be coerced into engaging practices in which they do not freely choose. The separation of church and state protects both freedoms and all Americans should value that protection, no matter what their beliefs or politics are. They should. But if you're evangelical, you probably don't. If you're a White Evangelical extremist you almost certainly don't.

 

6. Religious liberty is not an absolute. Our country has always had civil laws that may limit religious liberty. For example, plural marriage is still illegal across the board here even though plenty of people practice it... like some Mormons. The first amendment still, however, allows a person to call more than one person their spouse. It's just that the law will only recognize one.

 

To cite another example, Parents who are Christian Scientists or members of other sects that reject the efficacy of medical treatment over prayer are still obligated to seek medical help for their seriously ill child even when doing so violates the tenets of their religion.

Even Antonin Scalia made a valid point on this one: “If religious beliefs were superior to the “law of the land,” it would make “every citizen a law unto himself.” That quote refers to a Supreme Court case that upheld the firing of a few native Americans for using peyote and claiming that it was part of a religious ritual. “You can't touch it if it's part of my religion” is not now, nor has it ever been true in the U.S.

 

7. Not everything that claims to be religious liberty is religious liberty. Sometimes it's just subversiveness masquerading as victimhood. Remember that anything that violates separation of church and state ALSO violates religious liberty.

 

8. There are real threats to religious liberty in America today and many come from within. And many of those begin with evangelicals and evangelical organizations. But there are also those that come from secular entities like when police spy on Muslim-owned businesses and stake out religious gatherings at the local mosque.

 

9. Disputes over religious liberty are part of our history.

 

Just as many Muslim Americans are viewed with suspicion because of their faith, Catholic and Jewish Americans have been targets in the past. When Catholic immigrants came to this country, they were viewed as unpatriotic and pagan because of their religion. Their churches were attacked, their property was burned, and some were killed in outbreaks of mob violence. Likewise, Jewish Americans faced anti-Semitism throughout much of our history. They were not only discriminated against in housing, employment, education, and civic organizations but also targeted by the Ku Klux Klan, lynched, and killed.”

 

10. It is important to practice religious liberty with tolerance, responsibility, and neutrality. Enjoy the rights and privileges afforded you in the First Amendment and respect the beliefs (or lack thereof) of others. Oh, and keep your religion to yourself. Matthew 28:19 does not supersede the Constitution. Sorry. Also remember the most important part of free speech: it guarantees you a voice, but it does not guarantee you an audience.

 

I think those ten very important points sum things up nicely for this episode. If I were to add my own thoughts to the mix, I think I would simply want to reiterate just how necessary religious liberty is in a society that calls itself secular. What I find sad is that if the United States truly got this right from the beginning, the influence of evangelical thought would likely never have even been a thing here.

 

Let's keep in mind that the First Amendment accomplishes two things: it guarantees freedom of religion, AND guarantees that the government stays out of it. So where have we gone wrong? When did it become OK for the government to consider matters of religion when deciding what laws will govern the land? When did it become ok for the government to cater to one very specific, very toxic brand of Christianity and just give them whatever they ask for?

 

Whatever makes THEM more comfortable.

 

Whatever makes THEM feel more in control – even to the point of controlling others and depriving them of medical services they think their god calls sinful.

 

Whatever doesn't force them to think about the fact that there's a whole world out there that doesn't think or act like they do.

 

Whatever helps them not think about the fact that not every successful relationship is boy/girl.

 

Whatever allows them to deny healthcare products they don't even have to pay for to people they look at as employees on a legal level, but clearly view as property – slaves – in practice.

 

Whatever gives them the final say on who would make a good parent and what defines a healthy living environment.

 

Whatever lets them go on assaulting the world with their hatred while ever asserting the love of their savior as their motivation for doing so.

 

Whatever. Keep the conversation going. Make your opinions known. And not just on social media, but in other much more effective ways like actively participating in government even if all you do is vote. You can, however, do a lot more. You can keep open lines of communication with the people who represent you in government and tell them what changes you would like to see to existing laws at both state and federal levels. You can also donate money and time to campaigns for candidates who are likely to advocate for and facilitate true religious liberty.

 

Lastly, you can keep developing a solid counter-apologetic that includes the truth about our history and an understanding of the motivations of the founding fathers when they wrote the Constitution. I'm sure none of them meant to deny women healthcare services and birth control. I'm sure they didn't mean to discriminate against LGBTQ children and teens. If any of these things were more of a thing back then, I am convinced that there would also have been language in the Bill of Rights to protect them.

 

Think about these things when you talk to people. Be prepared to counter rhetoric with reason, belief with fact, and ignorance with wisdom. Who knows? Maybe you'll never get through to anybody with just words (even good, compelling, and well-chosen words) because some people – and most evangelicals – are just that difficult to reason with, but then again, you might just be the one who helps someone get and stay unbound!

 

CBB NOTES

So tonight I thought I'd do something different. There are so many wild christian “Prophets” out there, all saying really silly things. I've got two main stories and a mini story to share, all about the false prophets who seem to just...know things. Fortunately, they're always wrong.

 

https://friendlyatheist.patheos.com/2021/07/15/pastor-celebrates-a-future-genocide-when-god-will-kill-wicked-men-and-women/

https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/trumpist-pastor-kent-christmas-declares-god-is-going-to-begin-to-kill-wicked-men-and-women-claims-trump-won-by-about-80-million-votes/

 

First up, the most un-jolly prophet, Pastor Kent Christmas (yes that is his real name) desecrated the Grand Ole Opry on July 4th as part of a “Let Freedom Ring” rally, and declared that Trump won the election by about 80 million votes and also...that anyone who isn't the “correct brand” of Christianity will soon be killed by 'apostolic angels'. According to Pastor Christmas:

 

“‘Get ready,’ says God, ‘for there is an apostolic army of angels that’s being released in the atmosphere,'” Christmas declared. “One of the things that we have been bereft of up in the kingdom of God is that we have set angels on the sidelines. And the Bible says this: that angels are ministering spirits for the kingdom of the Lord. When you go back and you read the scriptures, one of the things that’s going to happen before Jesus Christ comes back—the first thing that’s going to happen is the Bible said that God is going to release angels into the Earth and they are going to remove those that offend and commit iniquity in the body of Christ. And there is a death release from God that’s getting ready to hit the wicked—I’m not talking about spiritual death; I’m talking about natural death—that God is going to begin to kill wicked men and women in this nation that have stood and opposed the authority of the Holy Ghost.”

 

Second, I can't stand Christians who constantly say “the bible says” without citing where the bible says it. I mean, I don't know EVERY scripture reference I pull out at a given moment but I do have a phone. And I know how to use bible gateway. WHERE does it say that angels are ministering spirits? I'm not saying it doesn't because, it basically does in a number of places. What I'm saying is that you have to qualify what you say. But here's the problem: they KNOW that they don't have to because anyone who is going to believe anything they prophesy will believe anything they say about the Bible, true or false. And that, right there, makes these prophets very dangerous.

 

It must be so great to take joy in the slaughter of Muslims, Jews, Atheists and everyone else who isn't his brand of Christian. I don't know though...I mean, I'm vaccinated and I don't think he is...

 

Lastly – a death release? Really? God is just going to start killing people again. OK. There's more of that unconditional love they keep telling us about. Oh, and yes. They do take joy in those things which makes them that much more dangerous.]

 

https://friendlyatheist.patheos.com/2021/07/15/prophetess-i-saw-gods-hand-in-the-sky-therefore-trump-will-return-to-power/

https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/kat-kerr-hank-kunneman-and-the-hand-of-god/

 

And now for your favorite prophetess and mine, Kat Kerr.

 

The fourth of july has been a busy one for these false prophets. The fireworks display in Jacksonville Florida was, according to Kerr, blessed by a vision of “the hand of god”. She got pictures and video and actually showed one of the pictures...

 

to be honest, it kind of looks like god's giving us the finger.

 

Anyway, Kat Kerr went on the “elijah streams” youtube channel to talk about her vision, also saying that it confirmed her fellow Prophet Hank Kunneman's prophecy that says that a “divine shift” would take place on Fourth of July, resulting in former President Donald Trump being restored to the White House. Kerr claimed that he said to “watch for the hand of god” though Kunneman says he never said anything like that.

 

At least Kat Kerr sent Kunneman a photo of said 'hand', which he shared at a “prophetic pulse” meeting at his church.

 

Whatever. Biden is still president.

 

https://friendlyatheist.patheos.com/2021/07/12/preacher-this-is-americas-245th-year-so-god-wants-two-terms-for-trump-45/

 

And Hank Kunneman makes another entry on this round-up for another prophecy this week because it's so...well, you be the judge.

 

He says that since it's the 245th year of America, it means that god wants Trump to have a second term. Because Trump was the 45th president, see how that works?