Daily Archives: 15 Sep 2012

Cats are Satan’s Tools: They Give You The Plague

No kidding.

A woman who tried to help her friend save the life of a choking cat also contracted the plague from the disease-stricken feline over the summer, health officials said Friday.  The central Oregon woman, who asked not to be identified, has recovered since contracting the disease in June. She was treated after showing early symptoms.  The woman was bitten at the same time as Paul Gaylord, who made national headlines when he almost died from a version of the infection that killed millions in the Middle Ages.

Two lessons:  1- never try to save a choking cat.  2- Cats carry the plague.  Still think kitty is sweet and precious?  Think again my friends, think again!

Libya’s Leading Muslim Cleric Denounces Radical Violence

The Mufti is to be applauded for his forthrightness and humanity:

In his strongest attack to date of the actions of extremists, Libya’s Grand Mufti, Sheikh Sadeq Al-Ghariani, has issued a fatwa condemning Tuesday’s killing of US Ambassador Chris Stevens along with three other American diplomatic staff and a number of Libya security guards. He said those involved were criminals who were damned by their action.

He also condemned the production of any film, picture or article insulting the Prophet Mohammad or any of the prophets by “extreme fanatics” in the US or elsewhere.

The Prophet Muhammad, Ghariani said, had specifically forbidden the killing of ambassadors and envoys.

He also pointed to a hadith in which the Prophet had said: “He who kills a confederate will not enter paradise.”  (A “confederate” is seen as someone who come to a Muslim country and lives peacefully among Muslims.)

The fatwa criminalised anyone taking part in armed attacks without the consent of the legitimate authorities.

What had happened in Benghazi was, it stated, “an attempt to undermine state authority”. It said that all Libyans who cared about their country, anyone who was intelligent, indeed anyone who considered themselves as Muslims should “despise” what had happened.

“Such an act, in fact, is likely to cause severe harm to the higher interests of the country, could unite nations against us, would give others justification to classify us amongst states sponsoring terrorism”, the fatwa stated.

Accusing extremists of twisting and perverting the message of Islam, it added that the attack could “give Islam a bad name, inciting hatred towards us, putting off those who were contemplating Islam”. It could even create a backlash among Muslims.

Would that voices from all across the world from every religious leader of any faith uttered the same sensible statement.  This is a fatwa every decent person can support.  Note, too, that the Saudi Mufti has also condemned the violence.  See the links below.

A Whole New Raft of Essays by Konrad Schmid on Academia.edu

Fox News: Morons

See if you can spot* the geographical blunders on Fox ‘News’ map…

via Francis Deblauwe on FB

* Hint- Missouri is in the wrong place, Arkansas is missing, and Alabama and Mississippi are reversed…

Alert For SBL 2012 Chicago Attendees: You Need to Pack a Flak Jacket and a Bomb Sniffing Dog

The flak jacket may help you when the shooting breaks out and the bomb dog might keep you from entering a bar where, unbeknownst to you, some maniacal jihadist has decided to ‘make a point’.

U.S. prosecutors said an Illinois man has been arrested on a charge of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction as part of an alleged violent jihad.  Adel Daoud, 18, a U.S. citizen, was arrested Friday after allegedly attempting to detonate what prosecutors said he believed was a car bomb outside a downtown Chicago bar.

Ain’t. Radical Islam.  Great…  My dear SBL friends (I don’t have any friends in AAR- those people are, to a woman (and man) weirdos), please take every precaution this November in Chicago: the Sudan of the North.

Answering Your Letters: People Aren’t Basically Good at All

Dear Jim,

You seem to talk about depravity a lot. Why don’t you spend more time pointing out the good in people?

Sincerely,
Samantha

No contest

Dear Samantha,

The notion that people are ‘good’ flies in the face of both Scripture and Christian theology. Scripture is plain in its assertion that ‘all we like sheep have gone astray, we’ve all turned to our own way’ and again ‘there is none righteous, no, not one’ and again, all have sinned and come quite short of God’s glory’ and again, ‘Why do you call me good, there is none good but God alone’… and many more.

Hence, only persons bereft of any knowledge of the Bible will willingly say ‘people are good’.

So why do I point out depravity? Because of two reasons: 1) the Bible insists on its reality in spite of the belief of many today that people are essentially good. And 2), to ‘drive people to the recognition of their need of redemption’. Salvation, dear Sam, if I may, only becomes real to those who know they need it. And my belief is that everyone needs it. Ergo, everyone needs to be reminded of their inability to be good.

We do good- but only aided by the grace of Christ. Outside of Christ, there is no good because outside of Christ righteousness doesn’t exist.

I hope this answers your question. Thanks for coming here whenever you do.

Jim

Happy News for Users of DirecTV

It’s free soccer week!

Is Freedom of Expression Just a Western Value? Or, Why Bob is Right, and Misguided Simultaneously

I don’t know.  I hope free expression isn’t confined to the West but it seems to be.  And though I agree 100% with Bob’s lucid and brilliant statement concerning the presently ongoing wave of violent madness, I don’t think that many in the Muslim world share our views on freedom.  Hence, the sad truth may just be that we’re talking past each other.

We need to come to terms with the facts and they seem to be that while we in the West value free expression, those presently burning our buildings and killing our children simply don’t.  It is, then, by the very nature of the case, impossible to urge them, through reason and logic and clear thinking, to adopt values foreign to them just as it would be impossible for them to persuade us that our views of freedom of expression are wrong and we need to muzzle and act in maddening violence to suppress every word or act or film or cartoon with which we disagree.

We, in other words, occupy two separate world views, our Muslim friends and we ourselves.  We can either learn to co-exist peacefully or we shall soon be engaged in the worst war of religion the world has ever seen (though it won’t really be a war of religion, it will be a war of worldviews).

Remembering David Flusser

In one of those odd historical flukes, David Flusser (a remarkable scholar) was born on 15 September, 1917, and died 15 September, 2000.  Flusser was that rarest of academics- a Jewish scholar of the New Testament.  Given his background and training, his insights into New Testament literature are grandly eye-opening.  You can take a look at just a few of his major works here.

He even has a Facebook fan page.  You should go now and read something by him.

Search The Quran

In these troubled times, when people seem ever more unstable and more than willing to attack and kill complete and total strangers for the evil deeds of one single man, perhaps our Muslim friends should search the Quran.  In it, they won’t find any justification for attacking and killing innocents.

Muslims are called ‘the people of the Book’.  If that were truly so, they would search their book and reject the violence presently advancing like a raging fire around the globe.

A nice reminder of the essential facts.

Reading Acts

While the synagogue was a place for prayer and study of scripture, the Temple was a place for sacrifice. Just as sacrifice of animals is always a part of religion in the ancient world, it played an important part of the practice of religion in Jerusalem. However, Second Temple Period Judaism differed from other pagan religious ceremonies in some very important ways. For example, unlike Greco-Roman religions, there is only one place in the world where and acceptable sacrifice can be made, the Temple at Jerusalem. A Roman could offer a sacrifice anywhere, at any time, even when there was no temple or priest to officiate.

The physical appearance of the Temple was impressive. The Temple grounds were larger than nearly every other ancient religious center, with the exception of Karnak in Egypt. The sanctuary could not be enlarged since the architects were working from biblical descriptions of the Solomonic…

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