Archives For Noah Filipiak

A lament

My heart is heavy from a Bible that says defend the oppressed and a Church that says just preach Jesus.

Just preach Jesus, but don’t preach anything he stood for or taught.  I will leave your church if you do.

Don’t preach about touching lepers or loving the poor or proclaiming liberty to captives and setting the oppressed free or loving your neighbor or welcoming the stranger as if they are Jesus himself or how the Samaritan is today’s Mexican or Muslim.

Just preach Jesus.  Continue Reading…

An article in the USA Today section of the Lansing State Journal caught my eye recently, “Sex before first date OK, but a cracked phone? Think again.”  The article breaks down some of the 2017 Singles in America survey, an annual survey funded by the dating service Match.  The most jaw-dropping takeaway from the survey is that 34% of singles have had sex before a first date.  This was followed up by a quote from Match’s chief scientific adviser Helen Fisher:

Sex before the first date could be a ‘sex interview,’ where they want to know if they want to spend time with this person.

And from Kimberly Resnick Anderson, a licensed clinical social worker and sex therapist:

We used to think of sex as you crossed the line now you are in an intimate zone, but now sex is almost a given and it’s not the intimate part.  The intimate part is getting to know someone and going on a date.

Let that sink in for a second.

It used to be that people were taught to save sex until marriage, now they aren’t even saving it until the first date! Continue Reading…

I didn’t grow up around immigrants or refugees.  When undocumented immigrants started coming across my news radar a few years ago, I was confused.  I figured a person could just go to the Secretary of State’s office and apply for citizenship and be on their way, so why weren’t these immigrants doing just that?

I genuinely praise God for a newfound education into the immigration system.  I’ve been convicted about the aggressive way I’ve recently approached this issue and have apologized and grown from that.  What I hope to do here is help others who are asking the same questions I was a few years ago by offering some factual and gentle information:

4 Misconceptions: Continue Reading…

Suffering is one of the most common reasons people doubt God.

If God is so loving, how can such bad things happen?

Trite statements by Christians only make this worse:

Something good will come out this, just wait.

God has a purpose for everything. 

Something good will come out of rape, child abuse, or the premature death of a loved one…

As if God were committing atrocities so we’d learn a lesson later.

I want to propose that most people live with the expectation that this world is heaven, so when they discover (through observing or experiencing suffering) that it isn’t, they are devastated.  Specifically, their idea of God is devastated.

This is a very complicated topic because we are indeed eternal beings, yet we do not live in an eternal world.

As eternal beings, we long for heaven.  Not just heaven as the place or destination, but a state of being without suffering, pain, disease, and death.  This is, in fact, what we were created for so it makes perfect sense we’d still be hardwired for this.  What we long for is a world without the effects of sin, while we live in the midst of a world riddled by these effects.

Continue Reading…

It’s February, which means Valentine’s Day is coming.  The season of love.  You can tell a lot about a culture by the way it celebrates holidays and in this case, you can tell a lot about what a culture thinks love is.

If you asked a person on the street what love is, you would hopefully get an answer that refers to caring for another and being committed to another in a selfless way.  Meanwhile, everyone can admit that our culture is plagued with sexual travesties:  rape and child abuse at the top of the list, with more subtle stops along the way.  The subtle stops will be debated, especially in our post-truth culture where the prevailing value is each person gets to choose their own values.  This means even if a person’s sexual patterns are destructive, it is a worse crime to tell them they are wrong than it is for them to continue doing whatever they want, whenever they want, with whoever they want.

Most people will still admit they don’t like feeling objectified.  What I mean is, most women will tell you they don’t like it when men gaze at their breasts instead of making eye contact.  Most parents will tell you they don’t want boys ogling their teenage daughters like they are pieces of meat, and making advances to act on these desires of consumption.  Outside of the sexual realm, objectification still applies.  No one wants to be treated like property, disrespected as subhuman by their bosses or customers, or treated like they don’t have innate value and dignity. Continue Reading…