Daily Archives: 23 Oct 2010

I Don’t Care What Anyone Thinks…

This commercial cracks me up

It’s Saturday: So What Are Your Favorite Bibliobloggers Up to Tonight?

Well apparently Roland Boer has organized a pre-Halloween party (to which I was not invited) and so my crack team of paparazzi(o) have caught them entering the soiree. Be appalled. Be very appalled. It’s a Lady Gag(a) themed affair…

Peter Opitz: Zwingli’s View on the Lord’s Supper

Peter Opitz (well known in 16th Century and Reformation Studies circles) read this paper at the Sixteenth Century Society Conference in Montreal recently and he has given me permission to make it available to readers here.  It may not be copied or redistributed without the author’s and my express written permission or cited without proper bibliographic reference.

It’s a fantastic paper and those given to incorrectly understanding Zwingli’s view of the Supper as ‘merely spiritual’ owe it to themselves to disabuse themselves of that falsehood- by reading it.

Heinrich Bullinger: On the Meaning of the Lord’s Supper

In der Einheit des Glaubens und der Teilhabe an dem einen Geist sind wir unsichtbar mit Christus und allen seinen Gliedern verbunden. In der Abendmahlsfeier kommen wir auch in sichtbarer Vereinigung zusammen. Nicht nur mit Worten, sondern auch mit Taten, im bekennenden Zeugnis … – Heinrich Bullinger

The Political Right Is Driving Young People From the Church? Not Hardly

Young people are leaving the Church not because the far Right is being the far Right, but simply because young people are largely disinterested in clear morality and ethics, worship and service.

You see I have a very simple understanding of people’s motivations.  To wit, I don’t think anyone who really loves God can be ‘driven’ from the Church.  Not by Pastors, not by politics, not by anything.  Not even by the Gates of Hell.  People may leave one church and go to another if the Pastor is an idiot or a jerk or people in the congregation are self absorbed prats, but they don’t leave the Church and they don’t abandon their faith.

Young people leave the Church, I believe, because they lack the spiritual wherewithal to be committed to much of anything at all.  Or to put it simply, many young people aren’t committed to anything but themselves.  And they’ve been taught to act that way by Churches that think pizza parties and outings are more important than Bible Study, worship, and ministry.  So instead of helping the elderly by mowing their lawns in the Summer, young people are taken on trips to water parks.

Mind you, there’s nothing wrong with fun and fellowship- in their proper place.  But to exalt them to priority, as many churches have done in an attempt to ‘bribe them in’ has resulted in an entire generation of self absorbed self obsessed self serving selfish young adults.  They leave the church because they’ve outgrown the pizza parties and they’ve never been taught to worship God and love him more than themselves.

If the Church wants to retain young adults, it has to abandon the world’s methodology of offering a prize for every appearance at the place where God is worshiped and instead teach children and young people that loving and serving God and others is their calling.  And that’s the highest calling and purpose of all.

Don’t blame politics the next time young adults leave the Church- blame them.  They’re the ones who left, because ‘they have no depth of soil, and springing up quickly, lacking root, they wither in the sunlight’.  After all, ‘If they had really been of us, they would have remained with us.  But to demonstrate that they really were not of us, they departed from us’.

Quote of the Day

“Peace, joy, a home in heaven, prosperity. These are the kinds of things we tend to focus on in our modern-day evangelistic efforts: Come to Jesus, and He’ll get rid of all your problems.

But Jesus called His followers to take up their cross and follow Him—to suffer for His sake. By ignoring that calling, I think we’ve produced a generation of soft, flabby disciples who don’t have much stomach for the battles of the Christian life. When they encounter trials and temptations, they whimper and whine and make a dash for the quickest escape route.

The apostle Paul understood that suffering is essential. He said that we must walk through many tribulations to enter the kingdom of God.

So when you face trials, remember it doesn’t mean that God has let you down. If you’ll let Him, He will actually use those trials as a means to bless you and make you more like His Son.”

-Nancy Leigh DeMoss


Paper Titles, The SBL, Academic Slavery, and Censorship

Roland Boer is something of a trouble maker.  We all know it.  And we all love him nonetheless.  But he’s a trouble maker with a sharp wit and a fine ability to focus attention on specific issues with somewhat spicy language.  It’s not the sort of language I would use, but I’m not Australian.

Anyway, the other day Roland posted a note he got from the SBL about a paper title.  It’s a paper he’s giving in November in Atlanta.  He was asked to change it.  Go see why and then come back.

Ok welcome back.

Now, John Lyons has chimed in with a letter to the SBL with which I agree in toto.  Go see why and then come back.

Ok welcome back.

It all reminds me a bit of the famous ‘fishing-gate’ controversy that stirred biblioblogdom to a near fever frenzy a couple of years back.  But isn’t it utterly fascinating!  Academic freedom, it seems, really isn’t free at all.  Powers and authorities still wish to constrict and constrain and even to strangle and choke any perspective or point of view or even paper title which might provoke discussions that those in power see as undesirable.

In short, the one thing this dustup shows is that the concept of academic freedom needs to be rethought.  We should really call it academic slavery.  That’s what it is in many cases and places.

Pastors and Politics Don’t Mix

Pastors aren’t supposed to represent the government- they are instead to follow in the footsteps of the Prophets and stand as a ‘voice in the wilderness’ calling government to righteousness.  Failure to do so, and failure to fore-go political entanglements is abandonment of their pastoral office. This guy is a perfect example of how improper such entanglements are:

Republican congressional candidate Stephen Broden stunned his party Thursday, saying he would not rule out violent overthrow of the government if elections did not produce a change in leadership. In a rambling exchange during a TV interview, Broden, a South Dallas pastor, said a violent uprising “is not the first option,” but it is “on the table.” That drew a quick denunciation from the head of the Dallas County GOP, who called the remarks “inappropriate.” Broden, a first-time candidate, is challenging veteran incumbent Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson in Dallas’ heavily Democratic 30th Congressional District. Johnson’s campaign declined to comment on Broden.

He is no longer a Pastor, he has forsaken his office and abandoned his post.   And he’s a bit unhinged with his willingness to accept violence as a political tool.

I Think She Missed the Point: Incurvatus In Se

Marriage, by definition, involves more than one person. So I think she missed the point, by a country mile…

Chen Wei-yih has posed for a set of photos in a flowing white dress, enlisted a wedding planner and rented a banquet hall for a marriage celebration with 30 friends. But there is no groom. Chen will marry herself. Uninspired by the men she’s met but facing social pressure to get married, the 30-year-old Taipei office worker will hold the reception next month in honor of just one person.

But one thing’s for sure- such a ‘marriage’ is the perfect illustration of what Luther meant when he talked about wicked people being ‘curved in on themselves’. Chen is ‘curved in on herself’ magnificently.