My in-box contained a new message from my friend PiD:
With 20 minutes to kill, I thought I’d look up our good friend Josiah. I found this on his blog. Pretty scary, no?My curiosity was piqued, so I followed the provided link to R. Josiah Magnuson's thrilling announcement concerning the Young Christian Leaders' Alliance. The YCLA doesn't have a theme song by the Village People yet, but PiD is right about it being just a little scary (with maybe just a touch of déjà vu).
Josiah is the diligent young creationist who likes to smite godless evolutionists and has twice won runner-up honors in the Answers in Genesis essay contest. He dallied with the quixotic presidential campaign of right-wing nut-case Gene Chapman, serving as the candidate's Intelligent Design advisor until Chapman dropped out. (Did you even know he was ever in?) Undeterred by the Chapman fiasco, Josiah has moved on to new political endeavors, including promulgating a new constitution for the YCLA. The signing ceremony on September 8 was a solemn occasion.
Upon putting down my signature for the Constitution, I got a peculiar feeling—like I was going to throw up, or cry for joy, or scream, or something like that. Whatever. No, though, I didn't do any of those. However, my face in the picture shows my feeling, if you can see it:In the grand tradition of paramilitary organizations, brown-shirted Josiah was accompanied by an armed honor guard. (The boys with the guns dug out their khakis, but apparently didn't have the right shirts to complete the earth-tone ensemble.)
And, of course, there was a flag-bearer.
Josiah provides a convenient summary of the doctrines that lie at the core of the YCLA constitution:
1. God’s Words are pure; KJV is the most accurate version. 2. The Members of the Trinity are distinct but act totally harmoniously. 3. Creation was by direct act of God. 4. Man is equal in humanity, responsibility, and rights. 5. Authorities are to be respected; must be obeyed when commands do not violate Scripture. 6. Individuals are naturally free to make decisions over their own consciences. 7. Death and suffering came by sin. 8. Man must have faith in Christ and His atonement to be saved from sin. 9. Baptism is correct and is by immersion. 10. Heaven and Hell are literal. 11. Christ will bodily return to Earth.As anyone could clearly see, these doctrines ineluctably lead to some practical philosophical principles:
God the Creator has established unchangeable Laws for the universe. The Law for man is found in the Bible. Disobedience of God’s Law is sin. Because the first man, Adam, sinned, everyone has inherited the same disposition. The only way to be freed, and escape sin’s punishment (death), is to trust in Christ who died in place of us. Christ also rose again, went to Heaven, and will one day return to decimate His enemies. Until then, believers should continue to grow in their faith, and endeavor to maintain health and fitness so they can best serve God and proclaim His Truth. They should also strive to be humble, merciful, just, and loving towards those around them. Finally, they should work against the evil schemes of Satan, especially those perpetrated by apostate “churches” such as that of Catholicism, and ideas of secular Evolutionary society such as that of socialism.Oh, oh. I think the YCLA is not well-disposed toward me. I'm definitely part of “secular Evolutionary society” and I support universal health care and public education, which I think makes me a socialist. I probably won't get any credit for having abandoned the Catholic church (although it's amusing to see the oldest form of Christianity described as “apostate”).
You know, that's probably enough time spent browsing around on Josiah's YCLA blog. If it gets more interesting, I'm sure PiD will tip me off.