Store Brand

January 30, 2007 at 3:48 pm (Pop thoughts, Random thoughts)

OK so the bottled water discussion has been the most popular discussion to date (even though it was pretty much just 4 people involved in the discussion, but they are 4 very opinionated people). I think that a natural spin off to this discussion would be the debate over “store brand” goods. You know the items that have a different label then the one you are accustomed to but cost between anywhere from 35 to 100% less.

In pharmaceuticals these are called “generics” and just about all of us buy those. And yet we buy Advil for headaches, Jiffy for our sandwiches, and wipe our butt with toilet paper that claims to be “quilted” (as if wiping with a quilt would be appealing).

The power of advertisements. You gotta love it. Well here is the question, which products do you buy the store brand of to save money and which products do you have to have a specific brand of?



  1. danielbalc said,

    I HAVE to have crest regular flavor toothpaste. I get freaked out by generic tooth paste and fancy toothpastes. All of these new fancy fangled toothpastes are really weird. Also my deodorant is a big deal to me. A couple of years ago they stopped making whatever I was using and I wrote several e-mails asking for it to come back but to no avail (though i did get a coupon for their new brand). I started using a different brand only to find out it was the exact same stuff under an entirely different label. (The first was arm and hammer the new one was Arrid XX but they are both subsidiaries of church and dwight and had the same ingredients).

    Just about anything else I would take the generic.

  2. itsasecret2u said,

    For me, it depends. I have strange nutritional habits, as you well know, so this doesn’t apply to me in some areas. However, I do shop at Trader Joe’s every week. I do this because their “store brand” often has organic food that is WAY cheaper, as well as organic brand name food that is significantly cheaper than if I buy it at the organic grocery store (Ezekiel 4:9 bread is $2.09 at TJ’s and $3.39 at Jimbo’s. Ridiculous!).

    However, back when I was normal and shopped at Albertsons or Vons, I was not really big on store brands. I will admit that initially it is just because I was raised on brand names. However, when I was newly-married and even MORE poor than I am now, I did start to buy generic brands. Honestly, some stuff is the same, but a lot is different. I used to be an avid baker and was devestated one morning when my biscuits turned out lopsided, lumpy, and flat. My baking powder was fresh, so what was the deal? I had bought the generic, Albertsons flour. It wouldn’t rise properly and it wouldn’t produce the same elasticity I got from my old favorite: Gold Medal. So after that, it was only Gold Medal, especially when baking something sensitive like biscuits or cinnamon rolls or bread. It would probably have been fine for, say, chocolate chip cookies or pie crust.

    Other examples of inferior store-brand products I have encountered personally: Kirkland diapers vs. Huggies (they leak like nothing else), various types of canned beans vs. S&W (generics are mushy), and any type of natural (block-type) cheese vs. Tillamok or Land O’ Lakes (simply no contest if you are a cheese-lover).

    I find no difference between generic and brand-name o.t.c. medications, Kirkland wipes are actually better than any name-brand, and I like Kirkland toilet paper better than quilted, fluffy whatever.

    I also find that all store brands are not equal in quality. I prefer the Vons brand to the Albertsons brand. I prefer Albertsons to Stater Bros. I’ve had attitude about Ralphs for years, so I don’t even know where it would rank.

    Something worth considering is that you can very often get the brand-name item for cheaper than the store brand if you are willing to work a little and shop store sales and coupon-clip. I used to save an average of 40-50% every week on my grocery bill doing this. In most cases, the brand-name stuff ends up being cheaper than store-brand and you are not left with the vexing question of, is it worth it?

  3. Pablo Honey said,

    I have mixed choices on this subject as well. For the most part I will buy whatever is the cheapest when I am at the grocery store, but there are certain lines I will not cross. I am with Daniel on the toothpaste and deodorant choices. It has to be Crest and for me it has to be Right Guard Extreme (Cool Peak) this is by far the hardest deodorant to come by because it always seems to sell out right away! I think my biggest fear of all is store brand cereal. I am a cereal lover, though I don’t eat it every day because I cannot afford it. Typically a box of cereal will last me 2 breakfasts, so it would be too pricey to go through 3&1/2 boxes of name brand cereal a week. I suppose I could afford to buy store brand cereal which comes in larger quantities for a cheaper price, but I absolutely refuse to eat the stuff. Joy bought some of it when we were first married and I promptly threw it out before it could fill the air of our home with its stench. I grew up eating the classics: Lucky Charms, Cocoa & Fruity Pebbles, Cap’n Crunch (with or without Crunch Berries), Cookie Crisp, Count Chocula, Cocoa Puffs, Cocoa Krispies, Trix, and of course Rice Chex & Cheerios covered in sugar. As a child I did eat breakfast everyday. I can remember several occasions where I spent the night at a friends house, only to wake up the next morning and be offered Vons brand Lucky Charms! Disgusting! Revolting! How could they!? The worst were the people who not only had store brand cereal but they also had NON FAT MILK!!!! What a sick world we live in when people are pouring white water into their cereal. Anyways, the point is that I cannot stand store brand cereal, and yes I have tried it, and it is not even close to the same thing. Is anyone out here a store brand cereal eater? Matt, I want to hear your feelings on this because I know you are a big time cereal eater like me.

  4. Pablo Honey said,

    By the way, the same rant I just produced on cereal can be directly applied to soda as well. Though I no longer drink soda (still haven’t had 1 since August), I used to drink it very heavily and would only drink name brand sodas. In fact I can remember times when I found myself in front of Wal-Mart with only 25 cents and that was the cost of the generic Wal-Mart sodas in the vending machine. In the machine next to it would be the name brand sodas for only 35 cents. I can specifically remember bumming a dime of strangers so that I could get my name brand sodas and avoid the disgusting Wal-Mart specials. Ewwww.

  5. danielbalc said,

    LIAR! We never had count chocula and rarely had cap’n crunch. All I remember is coco pebbles.

    I have pretty much shunned every food of my childhood. I haven’t had a bowl of cereal in at least 4 or 5 years. I hate spaghetti. I love fish (which we never got) and veggies like asparagus (also a never got).

    I can understand the taste preferences on cereal however. Water? not so much.

    It’s like different brands of eggs and milk. Can you tell? Heck no.

    BTW I want everyone to know that Secret eats bread called “ezekiel 4:9 bread” Please note the way that this bread is to be prepared…

    “Take wheat and barley, beans and lentils, millet and spelt; put them in a storage jar and use them to make bread for yourself. You are to eat it during the 390 days you lie on your side. 10 Weigh out twenty shekels of food to eat each day and eat it at set times. 11 Also measure out a sixth of a hin of water and drink it at set times. 12 Eat the food as you would a barley cake; bake it in the sight of the people, using human excrement for fuel.”

  6. Pablo Honey said,

    Dude I think the craving in your stomach for cereal is affecting your brain. We DID in fact have Count Chocula and while I will concede that the Cap’n was rarely found in our house, he was present at certain times. I am apparently the opposite of you on our food likes/dislikes. I pretty much eat everything I grew up eating and little else (there are exceptions, such as salad and anything containing avocado which for some reason the rest of our family hates, whats up with that?) My favorite meal is spaghetti which you despise…. very strange. I despise fish which you love. Is this bizarro world or what? As for secrets poopy baked bread I have no comment.

  7. danielbalc said,

    after conferring via text message with my siblings I have found that count chocula was exclusively eaten by the two youngest siblings. I had no knowledge of this, as you may recall I am the family member who dislikes chocolate.

  8. Pablo Honey said,


  9. itsasecret2u said,

    IT’S NOT POOPY BREAD and Athena liked the garlic bread I made out of it!! It is just made with all of the grains listed in that verse. What Daniel is talking about would be Ezekiel 4:9-12 bread, which doesn’t exist to my knowledge.

    As for the soda and cereal… I can’t relate. We did not have either in my house growing up. We lovingly refer to my mom as The Sugar Nazi. If we went to our friends’ houses and had a piece of candy, she could smell it on our breath when we came home. No joke. We didn’t have any white sugar in the house. We never ate our Halloween candy. Needless to say, Lucky Charms was not on the menu.

    As if we were already the freak kids at school, we were vegetarians on top of it all. I was once chased around the room by a peer brandishing a piece of lunch meat from her sandwich because everyone knew the smell nearly made me vomit. Cruelty.

  10. danielbalc said,

    Who was cruel? your mom or the peer? I’m going with your mom.

    I thank God for the In n out permission slip of Mark 7:19 “in saying this Jesus declared all foods “clean”.

  11. itsasecret2u said,

    Clean… but not necessarily healthy. 🙂

    I don’t call mama the Sugar Nazi for nothing. There is some implied cruelty there, no? I think she rather likes her title, though. Just like I will relish the words, “Mom, you are the refined-food Nazi!”

    I am a card-carrying member of the steak-eaters guild now, so all is well. But it must be hormone and antibiotic-free beef. 😉

  12. Matt S said,

    Once again it is all about flavor for me guys and gals.

    I am not too worried about the health issues because I am pretty good with eating healthy.

    However, I do like saving money and if something that is “generic” would taste as good as the name brands I would definitely go for it. Water for instance, I have no problem drinking store brand water.

    The main problem is that I do not do the grocery shopping so I have little to no input as to what is bought, and I like it this way rather than the opposite which would be all the input and all the shopping.

  13. itsasecret2u said,

    Bread: another thing where I found generics to be inferior.

  14. Pablo Honey said,

    I have got to agree with secret on generic bread. While I would not partake in the poopy bread she is eating, I stick to Oroweat for my bread, either the Potato bread or the White.

  15. itsasecret2u said,

    I am going to make all of you boys try said poopy bread.

    It’s just flourless, sprouted-grain bread. It is not, to my knowledge, baked over human excrement. That would hardly be cost-effective.

    Interestingly, I was an Oroweat-eater myself before I embraced poopy bread.

  16. Pablo Honey said,

    How could using human excrement for fuel NOT be cost effective? It is the cheapest energy source available!

  17. itsasecret2u said,

    Yeah, but you’d have to pay people to do that! Or pay people to collect it… GROSS. Plus you’d have to deal with the FDA and all that business. There must be some sort of permit required for that…

  18. danielbalc said,

    FDA? Now all of a sudden you are concerned with th FDA? Their opinion doesn’t matter in water but it matters in crap cakes? You health hypocrite 😉

  19. itsasecret2u said,

    Noooooo, I’m concerned with the cost associated to keep the FDA quiet about the poopy bread. Believe me, they can be bought. 🙂

  20. Pablo Honey said,

    So I am sitting in the jury waiting room downtown right now waiting to be called to a courtroom for jury selection and they just anounce there is a 4 week and a 10 week trial being selected today. Yikes! Pray for my immediate release please!

  21. Danielbalc said,

    I believe Secrets hubby is currently on a 6 week case. maybe you guys can carpool.

  22. Pablo Honey said,

    I actually suggested that we do lunch while I am down here but it turns out he is serving his tour of duty at the El Cajon court.

  23. Pablo Honey said,

    On a side note… Why are the timestamps for the comments so jacked up? Can’t you fix that?

  24. danielbalc said,

    Everything is GMT

    I think wordpress is a British thing

  25. danielbalc said,

    all you’ve gotta do is subtract 8 hours. Why is that so hard?

  26. danielbalc said,

    GMT stands for… Greenwhich Mean Time. scary huh?

  27. itsasecret2u said,

    You can change it, Daniel, in your account options. I forget where exactly it is, though…

    Yep, the hubby is in El Cajon for who-knows how many weeks. He’s too normal. They love guys like him for juries.

  28. itsasecret2u said,

    OK, so your date and time options are under the “options” tab, then under “general.” Just put a -8 in that little box. Geez, Daniel, how long have you had a blog? I’ve had one for 3 days and I already know more than you do? 😉

  29. Albino Hayford said,

    The problem with changing the time, is that all your post times will be jacked up for a while…went through the pain already.

  30. danielbalc said,

    I like the GMT. In fact I am considering switching my daily schedule to it. That would make my birthday last just a little longer 🙂

  31. Echo_ohcE said,

    I MUST drink Starbuck’s coffee. Although Trader Joe’s Dark Sumatra (got for Christmas gift) is pretty dang fantastic.

    but I’ll smoke cheap cigars and drink wine in a box. And most of my food these days comes from jenny craig. But I am a very picky eater. Very picky. I like a lot of things, but I’m very particular about what I don’t like.


  32. Albino Hayford said,

    20/20 did a taste test on coffee, and guess what? Starbucks kicked everybody else’s tail and Folger’s came in dead last. When I sip a delicious cup of Starbuck’s Christmas blend, I know deep in my soul that all other coffees are cheap pretenders. Startbucks IS worth whatever they charge.

  33. Echo_ohcE said,

    What about the anniversary blend? Man I love that stuff. I miss it.


  34. danielbalc said,

    I am so anti-Starbucks it’s not even funny.

    I’ll have to reserve that for another blog. But here is my first problem with it. How can anyone say they “prefer” the taste of starbucks when they add cream, sugar, milk, cinnamon, or any of the other 16 things they have out for you to add to your coffee?

    I will accept a “starbucks is the best” from black coffee drinkers only.

  35. danielbalc said,

    black coffee not black people

  36. danielbalc said,

    well the people CAN be black, but they must also be coffee drinkers who do not add anything to their coffee.

  37. danielbalc said,

    Actually if you are Echo from Lost then you ARE black (and big).
    I’m sorry to have offended you my African brother in Christ who carries a large stick.

  38. Matt said,


    Is that more kindling for the fire I see being thrown around?

    “but I’ll smoke cheap cigars and drink wine in a box.”

    Start your engines

  39. Matt said,

    BTW why do you guys drink coffee? (I am not a coffee drinker, obviously)

    Is it because it tastes good? Keeps you awake? Wakes you up?

  40. itsasecret2u said,

    Wine in a box… ew.

    Starbucks… YUM. But it gives me heart palpitations. I’ve been off it for 3 years now.

    Daniel, what if a person is comparing mixed coffee drinks from Starbucks to mixed coffee drinks from other places? Like, the mocha I had in Vienna at a fancy cafe tasted about the same as a Starbucks mocha (don’t remember how many euros it was, for price comparison). However, the mochas I used to get from the little coffee stand in the office I worked at once-upon-a-career ago were no where near as good. Is that not a fair comparison? Can’t I say it was worth the extra $1.50 (and the short walk) to go to the nearest Starbucks and get my mocha?

    Or are you joining me in my anti-capitalist, hug-a-tree, save-a-hippie movement to not drink corporate coffee? “Friends don’t let friends drink corporate.”

  41. Danielbalc said,

    Matt, my coffee experiences started when i made it a priority to be at school early for prayer. First it was coffee and hot chocolate mixed. Then came vanilla creamer.(This is like drinking candy…. so good). Realizing this wasn’t healthy at all I started scaling back to just adding sugar. 4 pack, then 3 then 2 then none. Now it’s straight up black coffee. I have acquired the taste buds for it and the caffeine sure helps. it is an addictive chemical you know. I love the warmth, the aroma, the bitter taste of my tongue.

    Now every morning as soon as I come in the office I make a pot. By the time my first class rolls around I will have drank 4 cups from my awesome chargers mug that my wife got me for Christmas. Usually I have to finish the last cup in the classroom. THEN I start with the water. It used to be the kirkland bottle would be refilled 10 or 12 times throughout the day. Now I just bought a big 32 ounce water bottle that I can refill . I go through 4 of those also.

    If I start up my “do 50 pushups every time you go to the bathroom” workout again I am going to be pretty ripped 😉

  42. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 38


    You grow accustomed to the taste (or add a bunch of junk to it to make it yummy *Secret raises hand*) and then you become addicted to the caffeine and you MUST have it. By this time, I think it even tastes good. You may realize you are grossly addicted and try to quit at some point, only to have massive withdrawl headaches, crankiness, depression, etc. So you head to Starbucks to ease the pain with a drink that costs as much as a meal. All is right with the world again. It’s just like any other drug. Except it’s legal.

  43. Danielbalc said,

    NO i’m not Secret. I’m anti stupid. Walmart makes sense. Nordstroms kind of makes sense. Now start paying nordstrom prices at walmart? that’s stupid. Thats what you get at starbucks.

  44. Matt said,

    At least you admit to being a “drug addict”

    I am reminded of an old Lagwagon song about coffee drinking:

    “Legal speed, its the American way!”

    And also a line from the great movie “So I Married an Axe Murderer”

    “They put and addictive chemical in it that makes me crave for it nightly smart a**!”
    (This is reference to the Colonel’s chicken of course but same rules apply)

  45. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 42

    What about my Vienna/Starbucks/office stand mocha illustration?? Doesn’t that count? That cheap mocha did not taste nearly as good.

  46. itsasecret2u said,

    Matt, I did stop drinking Starbucks and all other coffee three years ago, but I can’t take credit because it was strictly because of my heart. I REALLY did not want to quit and I still miss it when I smell coffee brewing. I am now an avid organic, herbal tea drinker. 🙂 No caffeine so my heart doesn’t go whacko.

    (P.S. Daniel, I was totally kidding about the corporate coffee thing. haha)

  47. Danielbalc said,

    I don’t know about the withdrawal headaches because as much coffee as I drink monday through thursday i don’t drink it on friday saturday and only a little on sunday. And I am not bothered by those days without it.

    I think i would be bothered on the other days because I am a creature of habit. I live by a routine. And right now I am way out of habit because I am still at the office an hour later than usual. AHHH I’m going home.

  48. Albino Hayford said,

    I use cream in my coffee, and there is still no question that Starbuck’s tastes better. Do a taste taste, and please, don’t brew it over excrement (like Secret prepares her food, apparently).

    My dad for years insisted that coffee will be in Heaven. Can anyone tell me what prooftext he used?

  49. danielbalc said,

    Albino, I’m stumped, what was his text?

  50. Albino Hayford said,

    Psalm 37:4-5
    4 Delight yourself in the LORD
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.

    5 Commit your way to the LORD;
    trust in him and he will do this:

  51. Echo_ohcE said,

    Dear Starbuck’s naysayers,

    I feel sorry for you. For once, I am proud to side with Albino and say, hey, they did a taste test, and Starbuck’s rules. All you who don’t drink it, whether out of pride or out of spite, I cannot but feel sorry for you. You’re missing the best coffee on earth.


    I drink it black like a man. A pot a day or so.


    If I try to go without coffee, I get a headache and cannot clear the cobwebs that I usually wake up with. All day my eyes hurt from the strain because they can’t focus right, and I’m generally cranky. Even if I wait till the afternoon or something to get coffee, by then the damage is done, and I’m in a rotten, cranky mood all day. I must have coffee in the morning, the sooner the better. I do not drink it all day long. I realize this makes me an addict, and that if Starbuck’s went out of business I’d be completely screwed.


    I sure hope there’s coffee in heaven, because if there isn’t I’m probably going to ruin it for everybody. Of course, I probably won’t have withdrawl symptoms in heaven. And if there are cigars, I’m sure I’ll be consoled, because I’m sure they’ll be the best cigars ever. But if there are cigars, there will be coffee. But if there is neither, at least there will be wine, and I know that one for sure, because Jesus promised at the last supper never again to drink wine until we were with him in heaven at the consummation of the age, which will actually be on the NEW EARTH (Rev 21:1). So I figure, if we’re going to be back on earth (granted it will be remade new), and we’ll be drinking wine, we’ll probably be smoking cigars and drinking coffee too. And I’m sure there will be chocolate. I’m sure there will be all that the earth produces. I can’t wait to have snuff to dip without having to worry about mouth cancer. Mmmm…Kodiak. But I never use it now, because, dang, that stuff’ll kill ya. But boy, there are few pleasures quite like that nice burn of a pinch between the teeth and gum. Mmmm…wintergreen. But if the new earth produces marijuana, I still won’t smoke that. Yuck. I often wonder, however, if my attitude about pot is the same as some peoples’ attitudes about alcohol and tobacco (meaning that it’s wrong to use it at all). But then I remember that pot is illegal, so I am saved from having to figure it out. Whew! But if pot gets legalized at some point, I’m gonna have to figure out whether I counsel people to use it or not. I lean towards not because of my own experiences with it.


    I’m sorry your opinion of wine in a box is “ew”. That’s kind of my opinion too, but I can stand it, and the price is right. Sure, I’d rather drink 20 dollar a bottle port all the time, but I can’t afford it.


  52. itsasecret2u said,


    Your tabacco description made me decidedly queasy, though I am not sure why. I guess I’m just a girl and I don’t get it. Chewing tobacco. *shudder*

    Also, a side note on wine, some historians think that the wine referred to in the Bible is actually not like our wine today but a fermented grape juice that has very little alcohol in it. I have a recipe for it (they call it “New Wine”), though I have never tried it. It would be more like kombucha than wine, which suits me just fine! But don’t be disappointed, just in case…

  53. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 46

    Daniel if you are drinking enough soda on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday you may be avoiding the headaches because your caffeine levels are still up there. Or you just may not have as sensitive a system as some others.

  54. Danielbalc said,

    i don’t drink soda very often and the amount of caffeine in soda is minimal compared to that in coffee so I don’t think I can agree with you secret.

    I am really going to have to sit down and work on my starbucks blog. that’ll be my topic next week I guess.

  55. Echo_ohcE said,


    If the wine they drank had a low alcohol content, then how come Paul was always telling people that they shouldn’t be getting drunk? How can you get drunk on wine with very little alcohol?

    Eph 5:18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit,

    The word “wine” in this verse is “oinos” in Greek.

    Mat 9:17 Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”

    The word “wine” in this verse is also “oinos” in Greek.

    Same word, same stuff. New wine can also get you drunk. You don’t put new wine into old wineskins because the wineskins get weak after they’ve had wine in them. They aren’t good for multiple use. That’s why new wine is put into FRESH wineskins. Fresh wine, fresh wineskins.

    Act 2:13 But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.”

    Here’s some more proof that “new wine” gets you drunk. Of course, the Greek word here is not “oinos” but “gleukos”, which is where we get the word “glucose” which is related to sugar. It should come as no surprise then that this word means sweet wine, or new wine all in one word, and far from being a less alcoholic form of wine is actually higher in alcohol content than normal wine. It’s like a port. But anyway, you can certainly get drunk off of plain old “oinos” no problem.

    And that’s what Jesus had in the cup at the Lord’s Supper, because they were eating the passover meal, which actually calls for everyone to drink quite a bit of wine. Also in the Septuagint “oinos”. So…

    Bottom line, in my opinion, that whole business about the wine in the Bible being watered down is something people who think alcohol is evil just made up. It has no basis in Scripture at all that I can see.

    You presented it as if it’s what “some people” say, so I felt free to speak freely about it. If it is in fact your view, I apologize if it feels like I ruined it for you. But the Scriptures actually have no problem with us drinking real, honest to goodness wine. God gave it to us to make our hearts glad, says the Psalms. But when we abuse it, the problem is not wine, it’s US. Wine is not to blame for our lack of ability to control ourselves. We are the problem because we are sinfully abusing God’s good gifts. Just like sex is a gift from God that can very easily be misused and abused. But that doesn’t mean sex is evil. It isn’t. It’s a good thing when used properly. So with alcohol. Getting drunk is abuse.


  56. danielbalc said,

    I think people like myself who don’t drink get a bad wrap on this subject. I don’t drink because I know how I drink coffee, water, Dr. pepper, gatorade, pretty much anything that is set before me. I know that if I began drinking wine or any other type of alcohol I would have a difficult time knowing when I have had too much. Thankfully I am no disgusted by the scent of alcohol and can easily avoid it thus saving me lots of money.

    So I would advise people to be like me. You save money, you are healthier, and you run no risk of getting drunk and making out with the ugly girl, or worse, getting shot by an off-duty coronado police officer.

    Actually I am not sure which is worse.

  57. Matt S said,


    So are we safe to assume that you have never abused your wine drinking privilege, i.e. “had too much to drink”?

    And since you are preparing to be a pastor, do you see your pention for wine drinking and tobacco chewing as possibly being a stumbling block for the believers that God will entrust to you?

  58. Echo_ohcE said,


    Here’s how you can tell you’ve had too much: when you stop caring how much you’ve had. When you don’t feel good anymore. When you get hot. When your face turns red. When you feel dizzy or naseaus. (I never could spell that word.) In short, when you’ve had more than 2 or 3 drinks. Or in the case of women, maybe less.

    Anyway, better be careful who you are advising to do what. Jesus drank wine. Avoid it for yourself, but you better be very careful even dispensing advice as a pastor, because people at least in YOUR congregation will take that as more than a person’s advice. They’ll think that’s a law of Scripture. The law in Scripture is not “don’t drink ever”, it’s “don’t get drunk”. There’s a big difference. Just like there’s a big difference between “don’t have sex” and “don’t commit adultery”. Since the law says “don’t commit adultery” you don’t think to prohibit sex with married couples. Don’t do the same with alcohol. It is a horrible thing to add to the law of God, like the Pharisees did. Jesus did not have kind words for them. I’m quite serious.


  59. Echo_ohcE said,


    Re: 56

    No, it’s never safe to assume just about anything. My grandfather used to say that when you assume…well, nevermind. I can’t say it, since I’m gonna be a pastor and all.

    No again, I’m not at all concerned that my wine drinking or tobacco use will be a stumbling block to anyone. I’m far more worried about my wicked and idolatrous heart. My enjoyment of wine and tobacco are the LEAST of my worries by far. By the way, I don’t chew tobacco. I love it and think it’s wonderful, but like I said, that stuff will kill ya. However, I do know one pastor who chews tobacco on a regular basis, and almost all the pastors I’ve met from my denomination have smoked a cigar with me on one occasion or another.

    You know, it’s funny. The reformed have a saying. If you forbid what the law allows, you’ll end up allowing what the law forbids.

    That saying is proven true by your post Matt. You’re worried about me being a pastor and being a stumbling block to someone because I smoke cigars and drink wine. (But even Jesus himself drank wine, and promised to drink it with us again someday.) Meanwhile, you have never asked me if I’m too big of a jerk to be a pastor, or if I have it within me to be gentle or if I know anything about the Scriptures. All along you haven’t been concerned about what kind of pastor I’d be at all. Perhaps you didn’t care or didn’t want to make it your business. But all of a sudden, you felt you had the right to question whether or not I’d be alright as a pastor, given that I smoke cigars and drink wine. But in the grand scheme of things, these things have little effect, if any, on my ability to be a decent pastor. The things that DO matter to you, however, are of no concern to you.

    I’d be surprised if you didn’t join the ranks of so many others here and elsewhere who think I’m a complete jerk. Maybe you don’t, but you probably do. But you’ve never asked if this was a stumbling block, when there can be perhaps no bigger stumbling block.

    What you have done is judge me by your own law, rather than the law of God. Don’t feel too bad though, because we sinful human beings do this sort of thing all the time. I’ll be the first to admit that Calvin had ME in mind when he said that our hearts are idol factories. However, despite my wicked and idolatrous heart, that doesn’t change the fact that you’ve judged me by an extrabiblical, man made law. And to do it, you weren’t real concerned about God’s law.

    I’m not trying to condemn you here. That’s God’s job and not mine, and if you are trusting and believing in Christ, you cannot be condemned by God either. But I am trying to get you to see what you’re doing, because I’m convinced that if you do, you’ll learn something about yourself, and it will challenge your view here. You are free to disagree or whatever, but I’m trying to get you to see that we cannot add to the law of God. The law is to avoid drunkenness, not alcohol. Two different things, as different as marriage and lust.

    If you really take to hear what I’m saying, you’ll be very glad you did. The law of God frees us from the tyranny of the law of man. We do not add to or take away from the law of God. That is why we understand how we have fallen short and look to Christ for redemption.


  60. Matt S said,


    You are one intense fella. I do not think you are a jerk, just really arrogant, slightly legalistic, and kinda extreme in alot of areas, but other than that I have no problem with you.

    The reason I dont question your Scripture knowledge is you have demonstrated you know the Scripture by all your posts.

    I do wonder if you have the other qualities it takes to be a pastor(those being everything other than preaching a riveting gospel message on Sunday), but it is not a concern of mine because I will not be under your care.

    I do believe that being a pastor is more about what you do during the week to shepard and lead your flock than it is about what you preach on Sunday.

    And yes Jesus did drink wine, but so did Noah, a great patriach of the faith, and even he was not beyond abuse.

    I do feel your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and we should treat it as such. It is well documented what consistent alchohol consumption will do to the human body.

    I also believe we are commanded to not be a stumbling block for our brothers. This has nothing to do with your level of self-control, but everything to do with the message you send to others.

    Just be careful, and maybe not so much caffeine will help also.

  61. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 53


    Soda does have much less caffeine, but I wouldn’t say it is minimal, necessarily. I threw that suggestion out there because I don’t know how much soda you drink. But really, most likely, your system is either not as addicted as some people’s (like Echo described his withdrawl symptoms… I experienced the same thing when I quit).

    My husband can eat whatever he wants, whenever he wants, and the only immediate visible response his body has is to become fatter. I do the same thing and I have stomach problems, migraines, headaches, weakened immune function, heart trouble, etc (on top of becoming fatter… yay!). Our bodies are just designed differently. Same thing with my children. My oldest goes off his whole-foods diet and has seizures, chronic eye infections, rashes of flat warts, and a pesky cyst that appears in the middle of his forehead. My little one? Ain’t no thing. He’s built like his daddy. I’d guess they have very healthy adreneal glands that are not bothered by toxins as much. Mine (nd my oldest) are naturally not as robust. We must be more careful. But, rest assured, that even if you are blessed with healthy adreneal function, your adreneal glands will wear out at some point (enter heart disease, cancer, kidney failure, alzheimers, etc.).

    Some people say, hey, fine with me. It’s my time. I find that to be acceptable. It’s about quality of life. If a person feels the first 50 or 60 years would not be as fun without sweets and fast food and whatever else, then I say more power to you. I just choose to do something different. Mostly it is because my quality of life would be HORRIBLE (and was for my first 20-23 years) if I did not eat the way I do now. If the Lord chooses for me to go at a young age, I will go at a young age. And that’s ok. But until then, gotta make the most informed choices I can for me and the fam, yes? In other words: ALL HAIL THE POOPY BREAD!!


  62. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 54


    I read that about the “New Wine” in a cookbook of mine (a natural whole-foods cookbook, of course…), but now I can’t find the reference! I stated it the way I did (“some people say”) because I simply read it and didn’t care to do any more research because I don’t drink anymore and it didn’t really matter to me. It just sort of got filed away in the back of my mind, I guess. It may have been in “The Maker’s Diet,” which I loaned to a friend. You’re probably right about it, but I just thought I’d throw it out there.

    The fermented grape drink I have a recipe for is simply 16 pounds of organic red grapes, 1/2 c. whey, and 1 tablespoon of sea salt. Juice the grapes, strain them to remove the pulp (which can be used to make natural yeast bread), cover with a cloth, and let in ferment on the counter for three days. Store in the fridge, and dilute 50/50 with water to serve. It has all the nutrients of grapes found in wine without the alcohol (there is a tiny bit from the fermentation process). Yum. 🙂

  63. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 55


    I cannot speak for your wife, but I should think I’d be much more upset if my husband got drunk and made out with a pretty girl, as opposed to one he wouldn’t have looked at without his ‘beer goggles.’ Just a thought.

  64. Danielbalc said,

    Secret, maybe, but wouldn’t you be more upset if he got shot?

  65. itsasecret2u said,

    Re: 58


    Do you think it is fair to say this: For some people, even indulging in an occasional glass of wine could be a stumbling block? I will use sex as an analogy, since you did. The Bible commands us not to commit adultery. If people have a hard time knowing when and where to stop and how to control themselves (isn’t that all of us sometimes?), it would probably be prudent not to go make out with a bunch of people (or one person) all the time, lest they knowingly put themselves in a situation which might lead them to commit adultery.

    I think the same could certainly be true of alcohol. A perfectly legal, “unsinful” glass of wine may quickly turn into 3 or 4 drinks, thus drunkenness. Or, you could be like me, where 3 or 4 SIPS of wine quickly turns to tipsiness, impaired judgment, more alcohol, and full-on drunkenness. Incidentally, this is why I don’t drink anymore. The former example would be why my husband doesn’t drink anymore. It is not sinful to have a glass of wine. But certainly many, many people are like my husband and me where it gets out-of-control quickly. I think that may be more what Matt was getting at (do correct me if I am wrong, Matt). Guaranteed that in any congregation, there will be people like me. Just like you cautioned Daniel about adding to the Law for his congregation NOT drinking, you will need to be careful that your own responsible drinking is not seen as an endorsement for drunkenness in your congregation.

  66. itsasecret2u said,

    Daniel, if he made out with a pretty girl OR an ugly girl, I’d have to shoot him myself. So what’s your point?

  67. danielbalc said,

    Re 64

    Illustration of Alcohol causing someone to stumble:

    Many moons ago my folks had some people from the church over for dinner. At this time my Mom used to keep some type of liquor (Brandy i think) that she would rub on the gums of her teething babies (Me I think) in the cupboard. Well the guests who happened to be recovering alcoholics caught a glimpse of the bottle and were offended by this. They left the church without saying anything. I’ll spare you the details of the reconciliation (which was a positive one, and their friendship remains to this day) just to point out that you never know who is watching and who may or may not be offended.

    I believe strongly that alcohol is a powerful and seductive tool that Satan employs to try to draw people from Christ. It’s now wonder the scriptures symbolically combine alcohol and adultery as the primary seducing agents of the worlds system. Just a casual glance at any college campus will tell you how positive an impact alcohol makes. I don’t want my kids to mess with it all. 1. because they are too young and it is illegal. 2. because other than myself I have never met someone who has drank alcohol and yet never been drunk. If I can help them to understand that delicate balance better then I will do it the wisest way I know how, and that is to teach the scriptures Proverbs 23 is a good place to start.

  68. Matt said,

    Now, lets talk about this Sabbath day. Who is to say it is supposed to be on Sunday? It very well could be Saturday that was the original Sabbath day.

    The Sabbath was given to Israel as part of the law, we are no longer under the law.
    (Galatians 4:1-26; Romans 6:14)

    “One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind” (Romans 14:5).

    I see no reason to observe a “Sabbath” day of rest, like was done in the OT, for we are free from the bondage of the “law”

  69. Matt S said,

    Just in case you missed it Echo,

    Now, lets talk about this Sabbath day. Who is to say it is supposed to be on Sunday? It very well could be Saturday that was the original Sabbath day.

    The Sabbath was given to Israel as part of the law, we are no longer under the law.
    (Galatians 4:1-26; Romans 6:14)

    “One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind” (Romans 14:5).

    I see no reason to observe a “Sabbath” day of rest, like was done in the OT, for we are free from the bondage of the “law”

  70. Echo_ohcE said,

    Re: Alcohol

    You guys do what you want. I don’t know why you’re concerned about having a bottle of alcohol in the cabinet when Jesus drank wine. If they’re offended at my bottle of wine and not at the wine used all over the place in the Scriptures (it’s even part of the sacrament for crying out loud!) then I would say their problem isn’t me or my alcohol use, it’s something else, and they’re using me as an excuse. Sorry.

    Meanwhile, my church uses alcoholic wine in the Sacrament. They give the option of grape juice, however, as well. Should we be afraid that we are going to cause people to stumble? No. Jesus commanded us to use wine. If someone stumbles because of it, then their offense is the gospel, the Scriptures. I can’t help someone who is offended at the truth of Scripture. That’s not a license to flaunt it in peoples’ faces or to be ugly about it, but we can’t let everyone else’s legalism control our lives.

    Daniel, your parents did nothing wrong by having brandy in the cabinet. The people that left over that had some other issue. I’m sure in retrospect they’ll tell you that if they’re honest. But whatever…


  71. Echo_ohcE said,


    Re: 68

    The original Sabbath was on Saturday. The apostles moved it to Sunday.

    In the OT, the Sabbath was a reminder of God’s rest on the 7th day of creation. It has significance of his being enthroned over his creation. He created, and on the 7th day he sat down to govern it, so to speak. That is what God’s Sabbath rest is, his rulership.

    In the OT, they celebrated the Sabbath, because there was a promise of heaven, whereby they would participate in the rest that God enjoyed on the 7th day. For the OT Jews, celebrating the Sabbath underscored their hope in heaven.

    Notice that they only got to rest after earning it by putting in a hard week’s worth of work. 6 days of labor followed by a 7th of rest. Just like God in creation. If the 7th day pointed to their participation in heaven with God, participating in his “rest” (a term pregnant with meaning), then the 6 days of work prior to this rest pointed to the fact that they had to earn that rest.

    This points to the covenant of works. Apart from Christ, that’s the only way to be saved. To be perfectly holy. For the Jews, celebrating this Sabbath on the 7th day of the week, that is, Saturday, emphasized this principle. It was a weekly reminder that they must earn their own salvation, under the covenant of works. That was law since the time of the creation. This was not a command given only to the Israelites, just like we know that the command not to murder was not only given to the Israelites. Otherwise, how could Enoch has pleased God? By obeying the law. We don’t have a recording of it or whatever, but they had it. They knew it. Probably passed down from Adam orally. Remember, there were more of God’s people in history than just the Jews. For example, everyone in Genesis prior to Abraham, or Melchizadek. He was a priest in Jerusalem.

    Anyway, that’s basically what the Sabbath meant: be perfectly holy, do your work, and your wages will be God’s rest. The Promised Land signified this same rest. Heaven is also this rest. The worship of God is also this rest. Rest is a complicated concept in the Scriptures, and has lots of layers of meanings.

    So to memorialize the covenant of works, they celebrated the Sabbath from the beginning of time until Christ on Saturdays.

    But then the apostles moved it to Sunday. Why? Because Jesus Christ brought to our attention a new way of obtaining God’s rest, for participating in it. Well, that way of salvation turned out to be in full force ever since Genesis 3, but Christ accomplished it only much later. So when he came and accomplished our salvation, they moved the Sabbath to Sunday.

    Whereas in the OT, the Sabbath pointed to the need for us to earn the right to participate in God’s rest by working for it, having it on the first day of the week in the NT points to the fact that we do NOT earn rest by works. Christ earns it for us. It points to his resurrection on the first day of the week. It points to the covenant of grace rather than the covenant of works. It points to the fact that we are GIVEN rest by grace, rather than EARNING it by works of merit.

    So the fact that we celebrate the Sabbath on Sunday by going to church and engaging in a “this-world” form of rest, which is the worship of God, we are actually declaring the gospel through a weekly memorial to Christ’s great work on our behalf every week. The memorial aspect of it is in the change from works-rest to rest-work. The order is reversed. So this also reminds us to be obedient to the law of God, not to EARN salvation as in the old covenant, but because Christ already earned it for us, and we want to show our gratitude. That’s the new covenant that Jesus ushered in with his blood. “This is the cup of the new covenant in my blood…” That’s what he was talking about. So the shift in the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday is actually because of this great shift from the covenant of works to the covenant of grace.

    I realize I didn’t explain everything thoroughly or argue for every single point I made, so if what I said doesn’t make sense or doesn’t seem plausible, just point out the place and I’ll elaborate at no extra charge.


  72. danielbalc said,

    Echo, I made reference to this earlier, but never got a response from you.

    According to the Westminster confession of faith (Chapter 21), which you claim to adhere to, the Sabbath day is a day for men to “… not only observe a holy rest, all the day from their own works, words and thoughts about their worldly employments and recreations, but also are taken up, the whole time, in the public and private exercises of his worship, and in the duties of necessity and mercy.”

    So if I read this correctly then you are just as guilty of violating the sabbath by…commenting on this blog on the Sabbath. Unless you are going to try and somehow declare blogging an act of worship, I for one consider it a recreation. But then I suppose I can also make my recreation (football watching) into an act of worship (which you tried to make the case for; thank you) but I don’t really see it as such. Except to say that I try to do all things for the glory of God. Even blogging. And often I stumble, but this only shows God’s glory more brilliantly (jars of clay reference from another post).

  73. Matt S said,

    I do not really care what day you want to say is the “sabbath” day.

    The point is there is no reason to celebrate the Sabbath like you say it should be celebrated or observed, by setting apart an entire day for the Lord like was done in the OT. That is OT law and has no relevance in this new covenant of grace we are now under.

    Therefore, it is not necessary to say that people cannot work, play, watch tv, go to sporting events, etc… on Sunday because we are no longer bound by the law.

    Maybe this link will help explain myself better

  74. Echo_ohcE said,


    No, you’re right, according to the Westminster Confession, watching football on TV on Sunday afternoons would be sinful.

    Please don’t assume that I’ve never read that.

    Thankfully, when men in our denomination are ordained, they are asked if they take any exceptions to the Confession. This will be one of mine. A lot of men take exception to this rule.

    I think the biblical honoring of the Sabbath is a matter of attending worship services. We have enough difficulty doing that faithfully. According to the Confession, any unnecessary thought on Sunday is a sin. I don’t buy it. I don’t see it in Scripture. I think the Confession is just a bit legalistic on this point. I think they have overinterpreted the law. They aren’t given over to legalism, because they never assert that we seek salvation by obedience to the law. Nonetheless, I think they’ve overinterpreted the commandment here. There is a difference between Israel’s Sabbath observance and ours. Understanding that difference can get very complicated very quickly.

    The way I see the Scriptures is: go to church. Don’t let anything stop you from going to church. Being obedient to your elders means going to church when they call a worship service. You see, it’s NOT a law to have a worship service on Sunday evenings. That’s not a law of God. The elders who do not hold services are not sinning. But when they call a worship service in the evening, the member of that church who does not attend is sinning (unless actually unable to attend, of course). They are sinning because they’re being disobedient to their elders, and they are putting something before the worship of God. We must worship God under the oversight of our elders. If the elders say we worship morning and evening, then we need to be obedient to that. They have the authority to bind our consciences, for good or bad. They are responsible to God for how they use that authority, we are responsible to submit to it.

    We do not, anyway, force every ordained man to agree with every word of the Confession. They are asked to name their exceptions. Sometimes, the exceptions may be serious enough to not ordain them. Most of the time, however, it is simply noted, and no one really worries about it. That doesn’t mean we don’t hold our confession in high regard – we do – but it isn’t infallible. We all know that. Astonishing as it may be to you, God has actually gifted the ordained men in the OPC with common sense.


  75. Echo_ohcE said,


    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I hear you saying that we don’t have to obey the law.

    Your position is called “antinomianism”. It is the opposite of legalism. Legalism says that we have to obey the law to be saved, and it tends to multiply the laws of God, like the Pharisees. Antinomianism, by contrast, takes away from the law, and declares it to be invalid.

    So let’s try a little exercise.

    The first commandment is “you shall have no other gods before me.” If we, as Christians, didn’t have to obey the law, then it would be fine for us to have other gods. We can call on them, sacrifice to them, look to them for help, pray to them and worship them.

    The second commandment is not to make images of God and not to worship them. If we, as Christians, don’t have to obey the law, then it would be perfectly fine for me to paint a picture of Jesus, pray to it, kiss it, lay flowers at its feet, burn incense to it, kneel before it, etc. And for that matter, we can make a picture of God however we like. If we choose, we can make a sculpture of a naked woman and say that this is our rendering of God, and we can bow to that and worship it.

    The third commandment says that we cannot take God’s name in vain. If you are right and we don’t have to obey the law, then God doesn’t mind if, when we get angry, we exclaim in exasperation, “Jesus Christ!” Yes, we can throw God’s name around all we like, attach any meaning to it we like, and feel free to treat it roughly. Also, the fact that we bear God’s name, since we are his children, would have no meaning. It would mean that we are not obligated to uphold his reputation. We are free to go to houses of prostitution and declare ourselves to be faithful followers of Jesus as we shell out our money for a whore. After all, the fact that we bear God’s name means nothing, if we don’t have to obey the law.

    The fourth commandment is to remember the Sabbath, to keep it holy. We’ll skip this one for now.

    The fifth commandment is to honor our father and mother. Yep, children will love the new freedom you have given them in Christ to simply ignore whatever their parents say. And doing away with this commandment really does away with all authority structures that exist, since the parent – child relationship is where we learn to submit to authority, so this command is meant to support all kinds of authority in all places. Welcome to anarchy, if we do not have to obey this law.

    The sixth commandment is, “thou shalt not kill.” I’m so glad you have set us free from this command, because I’ve really been wishing lately that I could kill whomever I want for sport. I think it would be fun. I’ll start carrying a gun in the car so I can shoot whoever cuts me off or goes too slow.

    The seventh commandment is not to commit adultery. Woo hoo! i’m off to the strip club, and after that, the whore house. Vegas, baby! Yeah!

    The eighth commandment is not to steal. And I’m so glad we don’t have to obey this command. The seminary library has some great books that I’d love to have for my own. And I can’t wait to start stealing stuff from Target. They’ve got great DVD’s and video games and all kinds of neat things that I can’t afford. But now that doesn’t matter anymore. Thanks Matt.

    The ninth commandment is not to lie, and if we don’t have to obey this command, then we know we can say whatever we feel like whenever we feel like. We have no obligation to the truth whatsoever, which will be very popular today, because there is so much anti-intellectualism out there. People hate to think today, so they say whatever they feel like anyway, and by doing away with this command, we are setting them free to do exactly that. It doesn’t matter if what you say is true, say whatever you want. The sky is red, woo hoo! Verbal anarchy.

    The last commandment is not to covet our neighbor’s possessions, including his things and his family, like his wife. But of course, your doing away with the 7th commandment already made me free to have sex with whomever I choose anyway, so I’m glad this commandment is gone too, so now I can feel free to give myself over to those desires completely. Thanks, Matt!

    Ok, now that I’ve indulged enough sarcasm to last a lifetime, are you sure you want to be an antinomian? Are you sure we don’t have to obey the law? Are you sure that you’ve understood Paul correctly to mean that we can do whatever we want whenever we want? Are you absolutely sure that you can simply throw out the law simply because Jesus paid the price for your lack of conformity to it? If you throw out one part of the law, you have thrown out the entirety of the law. If you think you don’t have to keep the Sabbath holy, then the rest of the law goes out the window too.

    Jam 2:10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.
    Jam 2:11 For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
    Jam 2:12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty.

    James here is reminding us that the law is a unit that all works together. If you violate one part of the law, you have violated the whole thing. So if you throw out the commandment to keep the Sabbath, you throw out all 10. You can’t simply retain 9 of them.

    But don’t miss verse 12. James tells us that yes, we should still strive to obey the law. It is still in force.

    Yes, we are freed from being condemned and judged by the law. But we are not free from being obligated to it. We do need to obey it, and I think I’ve proven above that that’s common sense. You know this. It’s not ok to violate the law of God. This is how sin is defined. But for some reason, when it comes to the Sabbath, we think we have the liberty to change the law. Yes, most people by common sense will agree that the other 9 commands remain in force, but almost no one thinks about that pesky 4th commandment. That was OT law they say.

    But this stems from a misunderstanding. We distinguish between the moral law in the OT and the ceremonial law. The moral law is the 10 Commandments. The ceremonial law are things like the dietary laws, the laws regarding temple worship, etc. The ceremonial laws are no longer in force. Those were for Israel only. But the moral law, which was in force since the beginning of time, remains after Israel has passed away, being fulfilled in Christ. We still have an obligation to be moral.

    Do I really need to quote the countless passages that uphold the law as valid in the NT? Do I really? I think it might be easier to quote only the passages that don’t talk about it. I think that would be a smaller number. How many commands does Paul give that are simply expounding on the 10 commandments?

    Some say that 9 commands remain valid, but that Sabbath day is a thing of the ceremonial law. I can see that argument being plausible. I can understand why people would understand things that way. But then you get really stumped when you come across this verse:

    Rev 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet

    What is the “Lord’s day”?

    Act 20:7 On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the next day, and he prolonged his speech until midnight.

    Why did they gather together on the first day of the week to break bread? Was this breaking bread a reference to a fellowship meal, or to the Lord’s Supper? Was Paul merely giving a speech or was he preaching?

    1Co 16:2 On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come.

    What is the meaning of this command to a church? Paul is commanding them to take up a collection every week on the first day of the week. How come? Did they have to gather together every week on the first day of the week? How do you make sense of this? Paul is commanding the whole church to get together and take up a collection. Could it have been part of a weekly worship service? Is there any other way to understand this passage?

    Are you absolutely certain that your position is biblical? Are you sure you’ve understood everything correctly?

    Hey, maybe you are right, but if you are, I’m going to need a lot of help from you to help me understand all this, because if you’re right, I’m very confused, and the same goes for the entire Christian church for its entire 2000 year history, during which it has considered gathering on the first day of the week for worship to be of utmost importance and non-negotiable. So if you know something the rest of us don’t, we’d probably all love to hear it.

    I’m all ears.


  76. Matt S said,

    Look dude,

    All this is coming from someone who loves church, and attends both morning and evening services 99% of time they are held so I am not trying to justify my desire to not go to church.

    What I am saying is it is no longer necessary to condemn or call a sinner someone who’s job happens to require them to work on Sunday or someone who likes to attend sporting events on a Sunday (like myself) or someone who likes to recreate(play golf, surf, run, etc) on Sunday.

    You seem to believe that these people are all in sin and I am saying that is legalistic and ridiculous. I guess we will not agree on this point, and if your concious requires you to only do “spiritual” things on Sunday then do it, but do not force that on other people whose consciences are not bound by such thoughts and want to enjoy a day off from work in other ways.

    These verses speak to my point.

    “One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it” (Romans 14:5–6a)

    “But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage? You observe days and months and seasons and years” (Galatians 4:9–10)

  77. Matt S said,

    I would add that I encourage everyone to go to church every Sunday, and after church they can enjoy their day how they please.

    I do not condone people who say they are Christians, but do not want to go to church. thus doing their own thing all day on Sunday.

    I think going to church is important and should be stressed, it is the “entire day is the Lord’s” thing that bugs me

  78. Matt S said,

    Echo, this is the best explanation of what I am believe. I did not write this, but whoever did does a great job (better than I can do)

    1 John 5:3 “This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome.”

    What is this law God expects us to obey?

    It is the law of Christ – “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40).

    No, we are not under the Old Testament Law. Yes, we are under the law of Christ. The law of Christ is not an extensive list of legal codes. It is a law of love. If we love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength we will do nothing to displease Him. If we love our neighbors as ourselves, we will do nothing to harm them.

    Obeying the law of Christ is not a requirement to earn or maintain salvation. The law of Christ is what God expects of a Christian.

    These verses deal with the end of the OT Law:

    Romans 10:4-4- “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”

    Galatians 3:23-25-

    Ephesians 2:15

    Obviously, if we are loving God we won’t be worshipping other gods or worshipping idols.

    If we are loving our neighbors, we won’t be murdering them, lying to them, committing adultery against them, or coveting what belongs to them.

    So, we are not under any of the requirements of the Old Testament law. We are to love God and love our neighbors. If we do those two things faithfully, everything else will fall into place.

  79. danielbalc said,


    I can’t tell you how shocking and yet relieving it is to read your post number 73. You CAN take exception to the WCF? WOW! I don’t mean this sarcastically i am shocked. So many times you have said the WCF says what the Bible says. So many times you have given the inference that it is authoritative. (Notice, I said inference, I am not accusing you of saying something like that, your not crazy, but you certainly have implied it).

    now that I know you are so firmly tied to the WCF I have hope that you will change your mind about IB and cessationism (which I still can’t find in the WCF, but thats besides the point).

    Anyways I don’t know if you got my e-mail but I was blessed with the opportunity to preach the Word yesterday and the sermon will be posted on the church web site within the next couple of days. the site is and it’s fairly easy to find the link for the sermons.

    this isn’t an invitation for you to openly criticize me on my blog. I mean you could but i would probably delete it as blog master. But you had requested a while ago to hear me preach so there you go dude. Enjoy.

  80. Echo_ohcE said,


    Loving God means worshiping him, and making a point of always going to church when possible, because it’s MORE IMPORTANT to worship God than watch a stupid, meaningless football game. I submit that ditching the Sunday evening worship service to go to your kid’s soccer game, or watch the Super Bowl, says to God that these other things are more important to you than worshiping him. But you do whatever you like. I am not your judge.


  81. Echo_ohcE said,


    Being able to take an exception to the WCF doesn’t mean we don’t hold it in high regard or that we can take any exception we want. A man is honest who admits that he doesn’t agree with every single phrase in the thing. Few find it to be inerrant. But exceptions better be minor, and you better be able to explain yourself, because they’ll grill you about it.

    Don’t hold your breath for me to change my mind on tongues or baptism. that’s like asking me to return to Egypt. I’d rather not, thanks. I got beat back then, and had to make bricks. I was a slave and didn’t like it.


  82. Matt S said,

    Ok got that worked out…



    I take it your lack of response to my posts on the law means you agree that we no longer have to follow the law, thats good.

    Also, I do not need a church building to worship God, if you do that is fine, but I worship Him in a number of places one of which is at church.

  83. Echo_ohcE said,


    I’m sorry, you totally misunderstood. I just didn’t want to get wrapped up in repeating myself. I do think we have to obey the law. I know I said I thought I could assume that you didn’t need me to reference all the countless commands in the NT and draw them back to the 10 Commandments, but I’m beginning to think that I might actually need to do that. But who has the time?

    It’s not about the building, it’s about being gathered with the people of God to hear him speak to us.


  84. Echo_ohcE said,


    I meant to say, thanks for the link.


  85. Matt S said,


    Please interpret this verse for me. What is it saying to you?

    “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40).

    Is this not the New Covenant, and the 2 laws that we should follow since Christ has come? Incorporated in these 2 laws are all but 1 of the 10 commandments, right?

  86. Echo_ohcE said,

    No, all 10 are in there. Celebrating the Sabbath isn’t meaningless, it’s a matter of imitating God, who rested on the 7th day of creation, and imitating Christ who rose from the dead on the first day, which is why we moved it to the first day. Imitating God is a matter of being made in his image. Nothing could be more natural to us than celebrating the Sabbath. It’s very MUCH a part of what it means to love God.

    But you won’t agree, no matter how plausible and biblical my arguments are, so what’s the point?


  87. Echo_ohcE said,

    By the way, in case anyone wanted to know, the Pharisees in the gospels did NOT have a proper understanding of even the OT Sabbath celebration. Their legalism is NOT Judaism.


  88. Matt S said,


    Your missing the point.

    We have been freed from the obligation to adhere to the OT Law because of what Christ did on the cross. We no longer have to follow all the ridgid codes and laws.

    The OT covenant and laws have been replaced by a new and better covenant with much simpler laws (being 2) listed in the Matt. 22:37-40

    Now, by following these 2 simple commands we will in fact be obedient to the ten commandments, but it is not because we have to but because the the law of Christ in Matt 22 incorporates them.

    Do you agree with this?

  89. Echo_ohcE said,

    No, I don’t agree. Reread post 74. The man who wrote that couldn’t possibly, possibly agree that we don’t have to obey the law.

    What we are freed from is being CONDEMNED by the law. We are NOT free from being obligated to obey it.


  90. Echo_ohcE said,

    From Webster’s dictionary:

    \An`ti*no”mi*an\, a. [See {Antimony}.]
    Of or pertaining to the Antinomians; opposed to the doctrine
    that the moral law is obligatory.

    See Matt, I’m not making it up when I say that you’re an antinomian. You have defined your view that way. Please reread post 74.

  91. Matt S said,

    This is your problem Echo, you cannot distinguish between what I am saying and what antinominism is.

    The Biblical teaching is that Christians are not required to observe the Old Testament Law. When Jesus Christ died on the cross, He fulfilled the Old Testament Law (Romans 10:4; Galatians 3:23-25; Ephesians 2:15). The unbiblical conclusion is that there is no moral law God expects Christians to obey.

    There is a moral law God expects us to obey. 1 John 5:3 “This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome.” What is this law God expects us to obey? It is the law of Christ – “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40).

    I guess you will never see this

  92. RubeRad said,

    Can you worship an idol if in your judgment it is too burdensome to worship an invisible God?

  93. Matt S said,

    I would guess no but ask God, I did not write the verse.

  94. Echo_ohcE said,


    Listen carefully. The 10 commandments tell us how to love God and one another.

    Jam 2:8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well.
    Jam 2:9 But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
    Jam 2:10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.
    Jam 2:11 For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.

    Here, James says that to love your neighbor as yourself fulfills the royal law of Scripture. He then makes explicit reference to some of the – gasp – 10 commandments!

    Here are some NT passages that continue to uphold all 10 Commandments.

    1 No other gods…
    Joh 4:24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
    Rom 1:25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

    2 No graven images…
    1Jo 5:21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols.
    1Co 10:14 Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
    Gal 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    3 Do not take the name of the Lord in vain…
    Phi 2:9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
    Joh 1:12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,

    4 Sabbath…
    Act 20:7 On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the next day, and he prolonged his speech until midnight.
    Rev 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet

    5 Honor Father and Mother…
    Eph 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), 3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” 4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

    Look at that! Paul even says that the 10 Commandments remain VALID!!!

    6 Do not kill (murder, whatever)
    1Jo 3:15 Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
    Joh 8:44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

    7 Adultery…
    1Th 4:2 For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus. 3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, 5 not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;
    Col 3:5 Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 On account of these the wrath of God is coming.
    Rom 2:22 You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples?

    8 Stealing…
    Eph 4:28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.
    Rom 2:21 you then who teach others, do you not teach yourself? While you preach against stealing, do you steal?

    9 Lying
    Joh 8:44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
    Joh 8:55 But you have not known him. I know him. If I were to say that I do not know him, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and I keep his word.
    1Jo 1:10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
    1Jo 2:22 Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son.

    10 Coveting
    Jam 4:1 What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? 2 You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. 4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
    Heb 13:5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
    Phi 4:11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.

    The 10 Commandments are reaffirmed all over the place in the NT.

    Rom 13:9 The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

    The summary: love God and love your neighbor summarize the 10 commandments. The 10 Commandments define what it MEANS to love God and your neighbor, and they remain in effect.

    Jesus frees us from the CURSE of the law:
    Gal 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us–for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”–

    So the law no longer condemns us, but it is CLEAR that when Jesus said he DID NOT COME TO DO AWAY WITH THE LAW, he meant it. The law is reaffirmed all over the place. Not ALL of the law, like the OT dietary laws, but the MORAL laws remain.


  95. Matt S said,

    I agree with that, we can put this one to rest.

    Whether you want to say that you are obeying the 10 commandments or that you are obeying Matt 22:37-40 does not matter because they are the same just not as detailed in the NT.

  96. danielbalc said,

    Matt I don’t know if you are actually fighting for what you think you are fighting for. I gather, from knowing you, that you are opposed to legalism. That’s good.
    I also gather from knowing you that you aren’t an adherent to antinomianism.

    Even though E-machine may come across legalistic, that certainly isn’t the case. He may be off base on baptism and worship but he’s certainly not legalistic, he’s just arrogant.

    Likewise you sound like you want nothing to do with the law, but that’s because he doesn’t know you.

  97. danielbalc said,

    Ahh, good my words weren’t necessary (as usual)

  98. Echo_ohcE said,


  99. Matt S said,

    Dont lie Echo you know the longer your posts get, the more enjoyment you get, talk about a drug…

  100. Echo_ohcE said,


    what are you talking about? No one who goes on blogs likes to talk.


  101. RubeRad said,

    I would guess no but ask God, I did not write the verse.

    Which verse? One in the Old Testament that we are not required to observe?

  102. RubeRad said,

    I MUST drink Starbuck’s coffee. Although Trader Joe’s Dark Sumatra (got for Christmas gift) is pretty dang fantastic.

    Just reading through all of the comments, trying to figure out how this got threadjacked into a discussion of antinomianism. Echo, I also love TJ’s Dark Sumatra! That is the best coffee ever! I love opening the bag and seeing all the coffee oil oozing out of those dark, greasy beans! I can do without the (over)price of Starbucks though.

    Also, I finally figured out who Pablo Honey is. Still trying to uncover secret…

  103. RubeRad said,

    I will accept a “starbucks is the best” from black coffee drinkers only.

    I drink my coffee like a man, and I am not convinced that starbucks is any better than what you can make properly at home with anything from Trader Joes, or any number of other Quality coffees (that does not include Folgers or Maxwell House), or you can get from any other coffee shop. There was a time, maybe 10 years ago, that Starbucks raised the bar, but now the world has caught up, and Starbucks is coasting on atmosphere and…

    brand loyalty! Look, I brought the discussion back home!

  104. itsasecret2u said,

    Also, I finally figured out who Pablo Honey is. Still trying to uncover secret…

    Rube, check out my “About Secret” page on my blog. I finally did it the other day. But you probably won’t know me. Your sis is my bud, though! 🙂

  105. Matt S said,

    Which verse? One in the Old Testament that we are not required to observe?

    I John 5:3- “This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome.”

  106. Echo_ohcE said,


    Starbuck’s continues to make the world’s best coffee. There are some cases, such as the TJ Dark Sumatra, where the coffee is very good, perhaps better, but that’s only one kind of coffee from TJ. Most of their coffee is crap. Caribu? Crap. Peet’s? Crap. TJ is the only one who can hold a candle to SB, and that’s only with one brand.

    Maybe I am the voice of brand loyalty, I don’t care. But until there’s a comparable product out there, the answer is, NO! I want my Starbucks! I love it! Must have it!


  107. danielbalc said,

    Ahh dang you guys are trying to force me to live up to my promise of a starbucks thread.

  108. itsasecret2u said,

    Yay for the Starbucks thread!!

  109. Echo_ohcE said,

    Starbucks rules…

  110. RubeRad said,

    Secret, your “About” page didn’t help. Even with real (first) names, I don’t think we’ve ever met.

    Actually, we probably have like a million times, and I’m just looking like an idiot now.

    Assuming you go to church with dbalc & matt & pablo & lants & my sis, how long have you been there? I haven’t gone there regularly since 1988, or mid-90’s if you count home from school during the summers.

  111. Bruce S. said,

    We know a guy who buys his coffee beans at a specialty shop in Escondido – the beans are, I think, from China. They are green. He roasts them in his oven at home. (He has dismantled all his smoke detectors).

    He then grinds them, brews and drinks. I tried it. It’s another whole couple of levels up from ho-hum Starbucks.

    Rube and Echo know this guy too.

  112. Matt S said,

    the beans are, I think, from China. They are green.

    What exactly are these “beans” and what type of “feeling” do you get when you drink this “coffee” and what does his “lab” er “kitchen” look like?

    Finally, do you have his number?

  113. RubeRad said,

    China?!?! Just think what he could do with beans from a country that God intended for growing coffee!

  114. danielbalc said,

    Rube, you don’t know Secret or any of her extended family. She knows your sister though.

    Be patient, Coffee page coming.

  115. Echo_ohcE said,

    Mmmm…roasted coffee…

  116. danielbalc said,

    OK i got a coffee page for ya’ll. With PLENTY to argue about.

  117. S* said,

    This diatribe popped up as I was getting to the LWC link. I didn’t read it all, but I got the water gist. I heard about a middle schooler who did a bacterial comparison between the school toilets and the school drinking fountains after bottled water was banned at school.
    Too many children were slipping vodka or gin to school in an effort to enhance test scores. The toilets were cleaner than the drinking fountains.
    Go figure

  118. danielbalc said,

    That’s funny. Very funny.

    Welcome s*. Feel free to engage in any conversation that tickles your fancy.

  119. danielbalc said,

    Here is a link to the story S* is referring to…,2933,280474,00.html

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