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xDreamerx

Christians/Fake Jews...Why do people find them annoying?

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xDreamerx

This is a topic that kind of fanscinates me. Why do people find fundies and other Christians who observe the Torah and Levitical laws annoying? I don't understand it. I reject the argument that they are "cherry-picking". When you get down to it, every religion and denomination cherry picks. It's the reason there is so much diversity of doctrine and interpretation. I also reject the idea that the NT covenant voids OT laws...well sort of. I mean, Jesus often disregarded them, yet at the same time he often referred to the Torah and The Law and was obviously brought up in the Tradition. I would argue that Jesus followers were not yet Christians because they came later, but were a sect of radical Jews. Some scholars even make the argument that Baptism may have been a call for people to reform within Judaism and become better Jews. Also, in terms of the Church and Church tradition, a lot of the Levitical laws were followed well into the Early Modern period (ex. ritualistic bathing, being "churched", sexual practices (or more precisely restrictions), fasting...although the Church often evolved that to just fish on fasting days. I'm not saying they were observed to the letter, just that a lot of them had a basis). I guess for those that disagree with me, I'd like to know why. I don't mean that as a confrontation. I'm curious.

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fundiefun

It's seen as disrespectful for those who are of the Jewish faith like they are good enough to borrow holidays, customs, and traditions from but it isn't good enough to save the Jews from the lake of fire since they don't believe Jesus/Yeshua was the messiah . As much as they want to separate Torah Observantness from Christianity they are basically the same thing since Jesus or Yeshua as they call him is part of Christianity. Sorry if this is kind of jumbled maybe another FJ member can explain it better than I can. These are just my observances and from what I have gathered from talking to friends who are Jewish I on the other hand don't care how others chose to observe their religious beliefs.

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FaustianSlip

Fundiefan expresses it well. Our traditions are good enough for them to basically coopt and use for their own purposes and missionizing efforts, but we're all still going to Hell? Thanks a lot, guys! Moreover, most of them can't explain the actual basis for these traditions, utilize these traditions to give themselves a veneer of credibility, which they then use to try and convert Jews who don't have a solid Jewish education, and from where I sit, it looks to me like a lot of little kids playing dress up and getting off on the novelty of, say, wearing a tallit without really caring about any of the underlying spirituality or traditions. The fact that when you look at YouTube videos of these messianic ministries, many of them showcase appallingly bad Hebrew, incorrect procedure and other such things doesn't help their case when it comes to them talking about how "seriously" they take all of it.

I also put a lot of their behaviors in the same category as people who put on affectations and pretend to observe, say, Native American spiritual practices. Yeah, buddy, having thirty dreamcatchers totally makes you a Ute shaman. Whatever. I don't see most of them following these mitzvot as a spiritual thing so much as as affectations, and that's offensive to me. People died, many in pretty horrible ways, to keep these traditions alive. They're not just there so you can slap a Jesus fish on a tallit or something. The fact that these people are claiming that they're Jewish when they're clearly not also bothers me, though it's not as offensive as what, say, Lina kept talking about, namely converting within a normative Jewish community but continuing to follow and recruit for "Yeshua."

Ultimately, it's cultural appropriation. If you want to be Jewish, be Jewish. If you're fascinated by Jewish history and want to study it, by all means, do that. But don't go prancing around in a yarmulke with a Jesus fish on it, carrying on about "Yeshuah" and your love affair with "Yah" and expect me (or any other Jewish people) to take you seriously.

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emmiedahl

It isn't so much that they choose to keep Jewish traditions; there are a lot of converts because Judaism is just that cool. It is that they want to take certain traditions while at the same time rejecting the group that they take from. Also, most of them would argue that faux-Judaism is better and more authentic than traditional Judaism.

Also, they go through the steps without understanding the depth and meaning behind it. They are trying it on like dress-up clothes, which is annoying if it is your culture. And they will take it off and be quick to denounce it later.

I am actually not as annoyed by them as I am amused. It's pretty funny imo. Fundamentalist Christian Jews are like rich white kids from Beverly Hills talking jive. They are a spectacle.

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JesusFightClub
This is a topic that kind of fanscinates me. Why do people find fundies and other Christians who observe the Torah and Levitical laws annoying? I don't understand it. I reject the argument that they are "cherry-picking". When you get down to it, every religion and denomination cherry picks. It's the reason there is so much diversity of doctrine and interpretation. I also reject the idea that the NT covenant voids OT laws...well sort of. I mean, Jesus often disregarded them, yet at the same time he often referred to the Torah and The Law and was obviously brought up in the Tradition. I would argue that Jesus followers were not yet Christians because they came later, but were a sect of radical Jews. Some scholars even make the argument that Baptism may have been a call for people to reform within Judaism and become better Jews. Also, in terms of the Church and Church tradition, a lot of the Levitical laws were followed well into the Early Modern period (ex. ritualistic bathing, being "churched", sexual practices (or more precisely restrictions), fasting...although the Church often evolved that to just fish on fasting days. I'm not saying they were observed to the letter, just that a lot of them had a basis). I guess for those that disagree with me, I'd like to know why. I don't mean that as a confrontation. I'm curious.

I find them annoying and I'm not even Jewish.

It's like Americans who tell me they are Scottish because their great grandfather was or something. Those people tend to know nothing beyond Braveheart (which is a total piece of shite) and they've generally never even visited Scotland. If they have, they've visited a selection of chocolate boxy locations which now makes them the expert over real Scots who've lived here all our lives.

Cultural appropriation. And when you consider the history of the Jewish people, it's even worse. FaustianSlip and emmiedahl put it far better than I ever could.

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JesusFightClub

Taking this wildly off topic as well, if you're going to espouse Irish republicanism and you're not Irish, it takes a little more than shouting "Tiocfaidh ar la". Also, being American and shouting this in the West of Scotland? You may wish to reconsider.

*taking deep breath, returning to subject of thread*

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FaustianSlip
Taking this wildly off topic as well, if you're going to espouse Irish republicanism and you're not Irish, it takes a little more than shouting "Tiocfaidh ar la". Also, being American and shouting this in the West of Scotland? You may wish to reconsider.

Oh, good Lord. Who the hell does that? I was an Irish studies minor in college and did my graduate dissertation on the Troubles; the whole "plastic Paddy" phenomenon irritates me. You're not Irish. You're an American of Irish descent, if you're even that. And why in the world would you be yelling about the six counties or whatever in Scotland? Ugh.

And on the Jews for Jesus thing, some of the videos and things I've seen have smacked of the Jewish/Christian equivalent of blackface or something to me. There is a difference, IMHO, between having a deep interest in a religion or culture and wanting to study it and just fetishizing it. Judaism isn't just some commodity for Christians to use to dress up whatever rituals they have that they feel have gotten a little stale in an effort to win more converts or keep people in the church or whatever it is. And the fact of the matter is that this whole messianic movement really got started with groups like Jews for Jesus (which was started by a Seventh Day Adventist pastor, of all things), specifically as a way to try and convert Jews to Christianity. I'm all for ecumenism and learning about different faiths, but that's not what this is.

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JesusFightClub

Oh, good Lord. Who the hell does that? I was an Irish studies minor in college and did my graduate dissertation on the Troubles; the whole "plastic Paddy" phenomenon irritates me. You're not Irish. You're an American of Irish descent, if you're even that. And why in the world would you be yelling about the six counties or whatever in Scotland? Ugh.

I'm from where sectarianism is alive and well (sadly). And have had the displeasure of dealing with people who think they're all with the culture getting drunk and shouting stuff they really shouldn't do. I'm Scottish and in a small town in the west you do not want to do that. Let alone Glasgow where you will face VIOLENT retaliation.

I support the Irish republican cause. And never in a million years will you hear me sing a sectarian song. Or shout "Tiocfaidh ar la" in public. It's not the right thing to do. Especially not in the West.

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Burris

I don't find all the fake Jews annoying, but just the ones who seem to be appropriating aspects of Jewish culture even while at the same time harboring a fundamental disrespect for Jews (e.g., openly stating Jews who don't convert to Christianity will burn in Hell, and that it's important to help the Jews in Israel not for humanitarian reasons but to serve some sort of end-times dogma).

As for the fundamentalist Christians in general, I'm only bothered by the ones who can dish it out but can't take it: They make absolutely hateful comments about others then cry "persecution" and subsequently censor unfavorable responses.

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fundiefan

I find them annoying and I'm not even Jewish.

It's like Americans who tell me they are Scottish because their great grandfather was or something. Those people tend to know nothing beyond Braveheart (which is a total piece of shite) and they've generally never even visited Scotland. If they have, they've visited a selection of chocolate boxy locations which now makes them the expert over real Scots who've lived here all our lives.

Cultural appropriation. And when you consider the history of the Jewish people, it's even worse. FaustianSlip and emmiedahl put it far better than I ever could.

I think that is an unfair comparison in general. If your grandparents are/were American immigrants, their lives and customs and culture were part of your life and upbringing. Claiming their heritage as your own is natural because it IS your own. I am part Norwegian. I grew up with Norwegian customs, language, food, and a very large Norwegian family. Me saying I am Norwegian is absolutely nothing like a Christian claiming to be Torah observant. I am not adopting the lives, histories and customs of people I don not accept - I am claiming where my history lies.

Claiming heritage - calling yourself Scottish or Irish or Norwegian or German or whatever - because your ancestors are is not even in the same realm of Christians who take the Jewish customs and make them their own.

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clarinetpower

*OT

Fundiefan, I'm a Norske girl, too! I make mean lefse, meatballs and krumkake. :) And I am very proud to tell you that my 4 year old uses the term "uff-da" of her own free will, and correctly. :D I don't speak the language, unfortunately, because that part wasn't continued in my family. But I do self-identify as Norwegian, though it is of descent only. However, actual Norwegians I know are never offended by that, and just glad to meet another Norske. /OT

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twin2
*OT

Fundiefan, I'm a Norske girl, too! I make mean lefse, meatballs and krumkake. :) And I am very proud to tell you that my 4 year old uses the term "uff-da" of her own free will, and correctly. :D I don't speak the language, unfortunately, because that part wasn't continued in my family. But I do self-identify as Norwegian, though it is of descent only. However, actual Norwegians I know are never offended by that, and just glad to meet another Norske. /OT

Hi, I own both a krumkake iron and a lefse griddle. I always make lefse with at Christmas for my friends, none of whom have ever had it. Its always a big hit. I love my Norske heritage and one day hope to travel to Norway.

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lilwriter85

As I mentioned before my boyfriend is friends with a Jewish couple that loathes the Duggars and others for observing certain Torah laws while being Christians. Their issues with it are more because they take the covenant to them seriously and they dislike non-Jews using some laws.

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mirele

Fake Jews = Baptists in sheep's clothing.

The history of these "Torah observant" followers of Jesus is not to be found in any branch of Judaism, but to be found in missionary efforts to Jews beginning in the 19th century. Christian missionizers figured out they could pick off some Jews who wanted to continue practicing Judaism but also add some Jesus to the mix. None of the major "Messianic Judaism" organizations come out of Judaism itself: Jews for Jesus, MJAA, the rest, they pretty much started as missionary endeavors funded by churches, or have hived off of these missionary endeavors funded by churches.

In the last several years, similar stealth efforts have been started among Muslims...there are "messianic Muslims" now. What's interesting is that Christian groups which generally have no problem with "Messianic Jews" have a real problem with "Messianic Muslims" and call the whole idea sycretism. Personally, if you're going to accept one, you shouldn't have a problem accepting the other, but I have a problem with both! :)

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wildflower
Fake Jews = Baptists in sheep's clothing.

The history of these "Torah observant" followers of Jesus is not to be found in any branch of Judaism, but to be found in missionary efforts to Jews beginning in the 19th century. Christian missionizers figured out they could pick off some Jews who wanted to continue practicing Judaism but also add some Jesus to the mix. None of the major "Messianic Judaism" organizations come out of Judaism itself: Jews for Jesus, MJAA, the rest, they pretty much started as missionary endeavors funded by churches, or have hived off of these missionary endeavors funded by churches.

In the last several years, similar stealth efforts have been started among Muslims...there are "messianic Muslims" now. What's interesting is that Christian groups which generally have no problem with "Messianic Jews" have a real problem with "Messianic Muslims" and call the whole idea sycretism. Personally, if you're going to accept one, you shouldn't have a problem accepting the other, but I have a problem with both! :)

And given the results of the Messianic Jewish movement, the end result of the "messianic Muslim" movement will be a bunch of Christian women wearing hijabs (badly) throwing Arabic phrases into their Youtube videos and blog posts. Yay.

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xDreamerx

This doesn't really answer my question or maybe people misunderstood what I was trying to get at. I wasn't really talking about the Jews for Jesus crowd as they are just assholes. I was trying to I guess get at why some people find modern people keeping Torah practices offensive when there's a history of this kind of thing going through the church for centries. How is this new or different?

Also, on the Irish thing, I disagree. Would I go around saying Republican slogans or things like that? Nope. But that doesn't mean people who are descants of a group can't understand/appreciate a cause, especially in the case of the Irish since Irish discrimination did continue in America, until fairly recently. It might be that you have grandparent or family member who has experienced it say and told you about it. Does it change your current dealings? Not really, but it does inform your perspective to a degree. I don't think people can escape their hertiage, even generations removed from it.

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pomology
Fundiefan expresses it well. Our traditions are good enough for them to basically coopt and use for their own purposes and missionizing efforts, but we're all still going to Hell? Thanks a lot, guys! Moreover, most of them can't explain the actual basis for these traditions, utilize these traditions to give themselves a veneer of credibility, which they then use to try and convert Jews who don't have a solid Jewish education, and from where I sit, it looks to me like a lot of little kids playing dress up and getting off on the novelty of, say, wearing a tallit without really caring about any of the underlying spirituality or traditions. The fact that when you look at YouTube videos of these messianic ministries, many of them showcase appallingly bad Hebrew, incorrect procedure and other such things doesn't help their case when it comes to them talking about how "seriously" they take all of it.

I also put a lot of their behaviors in the same category as people who put on affectations and pretend to observe, say, Native American spiritual practices. Yeah, buddy, having thirty dreamcatchers totally makes you a Ute shaman. Whatever. I don't see most of them following these mitzvot as a spiritual thing so much as as affectations, and that's offensive to me. People died, many in pretty horrible ways, to keep these traditions alive. They're not just there so you can slap a Jesus fish on a tallit or something. The fact that these people are claiming that they're Jewish when they're clearly not also bothers me, though it's not as offensive as what, say, Lina kept talking about, namely converting within a normative Jewish community but continuing to follow and recruit for "Yeshua."

Ultimately, it's cultural appropriation. If you want to be Jewish, be Jewish. If you're fascinated by Jewish history and want to study it, by all means, do that. But don't go prancing around in a yarmulke with a Jesus fish on it, carrying on about "Yeshuah" and your love affair with "Yah" and expect me (or any other Jewish people) to take you seriously.

Exactly.

It's not at all the idea that there are Christians interested in Judaism. In fact, I'm probably going to be taking my Catholic co-intern to synagogue with me in a couple of weeks. I went to mass with her last week. It was interesting. I've really enjoyed talking to her about religion and explaining various Jewish traditions to her.

The problem with Messianics, in my opinion, is that they aren't interested in Judaism. They're interested in how they can use Judaism. They have absolutely NO regard for what actual Jews think. The essential ingredient for learning about other religions, ESPECIALLY if you are devoted to your own (i.e. not seeking to convert) is respect. Messianic Jews, in my opinion, are the equivalent if last week when I was at mass I had gone up and taken communion. To me, taking communion, is just eating a cracker and taking a sip of wine, not a big deal. BUT I know it is a big deal to Catholics, so I would never do that. Messianics don't respect Jews. And it's not like they go back to the Hebrew Bible and follow all the laws that God laid down for the Israelites. No, what they do is take on the trappings of Rabbinical Judaism. They take the ways that Jewish Rabbis have interpreted the Bible and twist them for their own purposes. Of course, they don't care that Jewish Rabbis think that Jesus is completely incompatible with Christianity. If you want to follow the laws laid down in the Bible, then do so. Don't listen to the opinions of our Rabbis who totally disagree with the basic tenants of your faith.

Also, of course, Jewish history just makes us wary of people who want to proselytize to us. Especially when they go about it in sneaky ways like pretending they're Jewish.

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maybeizfundie

I only find them (Messianic Jews) annoying when they get legalistic, which seems to be an unfortunate tendency.

I have no problem with them practicing what they believe, or even "cherry picking". Given that Jesus was a Jew by both heritage and the religion he was born into, understanding Judaism as the context of his life and teachings seems a perfectly reasonable thing for Christians to do.

I only get riled when I'm accused of paganism for saying "Jesus" instead of "Yeshua", and other suchlike important issues. :?

Being fundie in many beliefs (but not pigeonhole-able) I can only guess why people might find me annoying. :lol:

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finleeport

In what way do these 'fake Jews' observe the Torah or the Old Testament laws? do they practice circumcision? never eat shellfish or mix fabrics?

sorry, can someone give me a definition of a Fake Jew? Its new to me.

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Sweetpea1

Hi, I own both a krumkake iron and a lefse griddle. I always make lefse with at Christmas for my friends, none of whom have ever had it. Its always a big hit. I love my Norske heritage and one day hope to travel to Norway.

Sorry to derail this thread, but... .

I'll bring the Spritz, rosettes, and egg coffee.

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wildflower

Well, part of the issue is that there has been a history of a very loud subsection of the messianic movement trying to argue that they are the true Jews. There is something called the "Two House Movement" whose followers believe that they are descendants of the lost ten tribes of Israel and that God has called them to Torah observance as part of his promise to restore the lost tribes of Israel. Part of this belief is the idea that "true Judaism" has been preserved over the centuries through the various sabbath-keeping Christian communities. The problem is that members of the Two House Movement who have no real genealogical or historical connection to the Jewish people are loudly proclaiming they are Jews and not only are they Jews, they are the preservers of "true Judaism" and the faith that people died for in the Holocaust is a misguided form of Judaism.

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defrauding
This doesn't really answer my question or maybe people misunderstood what I was trying to get at. I wasn't really talking about the Jews for Jesus crowd as they are just assholes. I was trying to I guess get at why some people find modern people keeping Torah practices offensive when there's a history of this kind of thing going through the church for centries. How is this new or different?

If these people simply wanted to follow the Torah, their practices would mirror those of the Karaite Jews, a tiny subset of the Jewish population that rejects rabbinic authority, rather than the more visible Ashkenazi Jews. The Torah doesn't command men to keep their head covered at all times, for example, nor does it prohibit eating milk and meat together -- assuming you're not boiling a kid in its mother's milk, of course. The custom of wearing a kippah at all times actually began well after the start of Christianity.

It's also not just Jews for Jesus on the one hand and "Christians who happen to follow the laws of the Torah" on the other. Groups like the Southern Baptist Convention spend millions of dollars each year on messianic synagogues and ministries -- even though they rarely, if ever, attract any Jews -- and many of the people we mock have some sort of connection to these organized efforts. Look at Lina: her boyfriend claims to be associated with First Fruits of Zion, a group "endeavoring to restore the Gospel message in this context, making it a more effective message...and making it more 'palatable' to the Jewish people."

On a semi-related note, it doesn't take long before movements like these tip over into antisemitism through the process wildflower describes. The extremist wing of the Hebrew Israelite movement is a great example.

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Witsec1

[quote="defrauding"....

It's also not just Jews for Jesus on the one hand and "Christians who happen to follow the laws of the Torah" on the other. Groups like the Southern Baptist Convention spend millions of dollars each year on messianic synagogues and ministries -- even though they rarely, if ever, attract any Jews -- and many of the people we mock have some sort of connection to these organized efforts. Look at Lina]endeavoring to restore the Gospel message in this context, making it a more effective message...and making it more 'palatable' to the Jewish people."

On a semi-related note, it doesn't take long before movements like these tip over into antisemitism through the process wildflower describes. The extremist wing of the Hebrew Israelite movement is a great example...

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mirele
On a side note, one thing that bugs me about both fundies and many mainstream Christians is how they have re-written history to make anti-semitism purely a secular thing promoted by "socialists" like Hitler, whereas the Christians like Corrie Ten Boom saved the Jews. Not to downplay the christians who rescued Jews, but if you get your history of European Jewish-Christian history solely from the movie "The Hiding Place, you're ignoring the centuries of Christian promotion of anti-Semitism.

Glargh, the Hiding Place....Anti-semitism is something the church has not dealt well with AT ALL in the post-WW2 era. And, as the years pass and we get further away from Nazi Germany, the horror of what happened and the mindset that let it happen also recedes. We don't GET that for centuries, it was ALWAYS Hate The Jews time in Europe. ALWAYS Run The Jews Outta Town time (but take their property first). ALWAYS Forbid The Jews to participate in public life or to be involved in certain professions. It was ALWAYS Make The Jews Wear Identification time. And why? Not because there was the idea of anti-semitism from forever, but because the dominant religious organization over the centuries decided that since the Jews had "rejected" Jesus, they, as Jesus' followers, would reject them firmly and try to forcefully get them to convert. It's amazing to me that Judaism survived in Europe, considering how Jews were harassed for centuries from country to country.

Personally, I think Christians should back off on converting Jews, but I'm just using up bytes protesting against something that will never happen.

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liltwinstar

I'm not Jewish, but I just find the whole Torah-keeping Christian thing to be disrespectful of some really ancient customs.

For example, on one of the blogs, a woman wrote about how she went to a mikvah to prepare for her wedding. A traditional mikvah is built according to certain customs and is considered a sacred thing. One enters the mikvah alone and naked and it's a personal time to talk to God and fulfill one's commitments. However, the women on the blog did not go to a traditional mikvah, because not being Jewish, she couldn't. So, she dressed herself up in a modest bathing suit of some kind, and a headscarf and immersed herself in a public pool with two of her friends watching. Then she wrote about how she'd been to a "mikvah"...which it clearly wasn't. It was a swimming pool that she prayed in. Which, fine, but don't say it's a mikvah.

If you want to stop eating pork or something for personal reasons, that's fine with me, but saying that you're something you're not and then trying to follow customs that you don't understand while simultaneously performing rituals really, really badly is just disrespectful in my opinion.

I guess to me it would be like someone dressing up as a priest and performing a Latin mass really, really badly; getting the prayers wrong and the ritual wrong; not having the appropriate authority from a bishop, etc and then saying that he was a better Catholic than all the people going to real mass because he was saying mass in Latin. Well, maybe that's what he was *trying* to do, but by getting it so wrong, it's a mockery of the thing he professes to believe in.

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