Zwinglius Redivivus

Deus dixit

Archive for the ‘media’ Category

Being ‘Nice’ Isn’t the Goal of Christianity

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There’s a brilliant essay in The Telegraph which makes that important point in a striking way, in a discussion of the TV show “Rev”.

Here’s a thought for the day: Most people are “nice”, but Christians should be nice with a purpose.

I am not a fan of the sitcom Rev, which depicts a vicar trying to be kind to his parishioners – with hilarious consequences. His congregation is small, full of delinquents, and the eponymous clergymen is often driven to drink by their unholy antics. Justin Welby disagrees with the show’s depiction of Anglican life because he notes that many churches are growing. The Rev’s, by contrast, conforms to a self-lacerating vision of Christianity as nice but niche.

But self-laceration is the stock-in-trade of the 1960s liberal Christian tradition, and Rev is its fifth gospel. The priest character is full of doubt, constantly questioning his vocation, reluctant to preach about sin and contemptuous of those who do (evangelicals are portrayed, inevitably, as gurning bigots). It’s never entirely clear why he wants to be a priest at all. Except, perhaps, to be nice to those who undoubtedly need it. Rev imagines Christians to be social workers in dog collars: faith is far less important than acts of kindness. Which is all very nice, but hardly conducive to filling the pews. If the church only ever gives, then people will only ever take from it. What’s the point of committing oneself to a faith that asks nothing in return – including firm belief?

Read it ALL.  It’s a shame more theologians don’t have as much sense and comprehension as a historian.

Written by Jim

April 16, 2014 at 05:58

Posted in media, Theology

Candida Moss on the Travel Channel

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Don Wildman is on location in Israel to investigate a mountaintop fortress, examine the room of the last supper, and walk through the famed Garden of Gethsemane to shed new light on Christ’s betrayer, Judas.  Sunday, April 20, 2014.

Check your provider for time (I guess).  I am thinking that the room of the Last Supper isn’t the actual room because that no longer exists and the room they will actually show will be the Crusader Period upper room.  And, I don’t know how walking through Gethsemane will shed any light on Judas, but what the heck, let’s give it a watching.  I’m sure Candida will do a good job.  She has so far.

I’ll live blog it.  I know you lot love it when I do that…

Written by Jim

April 15, 2014 at 20:33

Posted in Bible, media

Patrick Stewart’s New Film on the Destruction of Palestine’s Heritage

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The port city of Akka (also known as Acre) is one of the places where the conflict over ownership of Palestinian history and culture is most stark.

The recent campaign to prevent the historicKhan al-Umdan being turned into a luxury hotel by Israeli developers highlighted the struggle by an economically and politically marginalized Palestinian community to resist gentrificationand an insidious ethnic cleansing.

Director Patrick Stewart does an admirable job in It’s Better to Jump of conveying both the staggeringly long history of this beautiful port and the challenges which beset its people on a daily basis.

The film opens with swooping maps which emphasize Akka’s place — over thousands of years — on trade routes stretching both east and west. The focus narrows to local people — famous figures such as actor Makram Khoury but also ordinary folks such as tour guides, schoolteachers and students talking about their attachment to their home.

There’s a trailer of the film too at the website containing the full report.  Which do read.

Written by Jim

April 15, 2014 at 18:49

Posted in media, Modern Culture

Public Shaming: Let’s Have More Of It

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I applaud the judge in Ohio for making this guy, who mocked disabled children, feel a little of the misery he caused.

25235529_BG1An Ohio man ordered to spend five hours at a street corner with a sign declaring he’s a bully says his sentence was unfair and the judge who gave it to him ruined his life.  62-year-old Edmond Aviv for the most part ignored honking horns and people who stopped by to talk with him Sunday in South Euclid.  But he wasn’t happy with the punishment, saying, “The judge destroyed me” and “This isn’t fair at all.”

But he still hasn’t learned his lesson.  As long as he can only think about himself, he needs to spend more time on the corner with his sign.

Written by Jim

April 13, 2014 at 18:01

Posted in media

“It IS Going to Happen!”

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From the facebook-


Watch the trailer here-  and on May 2- download the full length film-

The director and producer of this film has shown how such things should be made. The History Channel and the Discovery Channel and the Canadian film maker should take notes.

Written by Jim

April 10, 2014 at 23:06

Posted in media

Remember the Horrible Woman Who Defaced the Painting of Jesus in an Attempt to ‘Restore’ It?

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She took art lessons from George Bush


Why haven’t we been talking about this?  For the same reason that you don’t talk about that odd nephew of yours who thinks he can play the drums but who can really only create horror and despair by his cacophony of misery.  That’s why.

Written by Jim

April 4, 2014 at 19:46

Posted in media

Get Thee to Sunday School!

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If you don’t already know all of this…  (and note, I LOVE the little tiny disclaimer at the bottom- because evidently people are so daft that they don’t know the difference between the Bible and a Hollywood production…)


Yes, thank you Captain Obvious…

Written by Jim

April 3, 2014 at 17:09

Posted in media, misery

Quote of the Day

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I am more offended by Christian pastors who twist and mangle God’s Word than I am by Hollywood doing the same thing. Both are wrong but Christian pastors should know better. – Chris Rosebrough

Written by Jim

April 2, 2014 at 13:05

Eric Meyers is Absolutely Right: Media and Journalists, Take Note!

Unfortunately, today a seemingly impenetrable divide separates lay studies and sermons, on the one hand, from the academic study of the Bible and archaeology, on the other. To this we may add the yawning gap between what scholars do and what much of the media does. For example, an ABC special that aired last year showing Christiane Amanpour and her son watching the sunrise from Mt. Sinai more or less ignored the state of the archaeological field today. This show could have been produced a generation ago.

I do not think the American public is apathetic or indifferent. On the contrary, as many readers of BAR know, a small cadre of devoted readers pride themselves on staying attuned to the most recent developments in the field of Biblical archaeology. In relation to the larger population of the United States as a whole, however, this is a very small group. When we add the fact that the media is hesitant to take on some of the real current questions that are challenging the field, the situation is even worse.

What we in academia observe is a stubborn refusal by large sectors of the population to accept climate change and global warming as factors to be taken seriously. But cancer research—everyone takes that seriously. The study of religion—and especially the Bible and archaeology—often falls into the former category.

Read it all.  It’s important.  And pass it to your friends in the media.

Written by Jim

March 31, 2014 at 10:08

Posted in Archaeology, media

Joel Baden on ‘Noah’

Joel opines

With Noah, Darren Aronofsky has made a surprisingly good movie about a man who saves his family and the animal kingdom from a catastrophic worldwide flood. For those who entered the theater expecting to be entertained, and even perhaps made to think, by a cinematic adaptation of a biblical story, they no doubt left happy. For those who expected to see the biblical story rendered into glorious IMAX, every detail preserved exactly as it is told in Genesis, disillusion probably set in around the third minute and lasted until the hundred and thirty-third.

Etc.  I’m still not going to spend any money to see it.

Written by Jim

March 30, 2014 at 15:19

Posted in media


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