How To Recognize a False Shepherd

In his brilliant book ‘The Shepherd’, Zwingli offers 9 marks of the ‘false shepherd’.  Here they are:

And now a summary wherein you can recognize false shepherds:

1. All who do not teach are nothing but wolves, though they might be called shepherd, bishop, or king. See in this connection how many teaching bishops there are.

2. Those who teach their own dreams rather than the word of God are wolves.

3. Those who teach the word of God, yet not to the honor of God, but for themselves and their head, the Pope, for protection of their fabricated high station, are harmful wolves, coming in sheep’s clothing.

4. Those who teach already and teach even with the word of God, but do not, however, disturb the greatest aggravators, the leaders, but allow their tyranny to grow, are flattering wolves or traitors of the people.

5. Those who do not practice with works what they teach with the word are nothing among the Christian people, destroying much more with their works than they build with their words.

6. Those who do not pay attention to the poor but let them be oppressed and burdened, are false shepherds.

7. Those who wear the name of shepherd, yet rule in the worldly sense are the most evil werewolves.

8. Those who gather riches, filling sack, purse, storehouse and cellar are true werewolves. And finally, those who do other things with doctrine than undertaking to plant the knowledge, love and childlike fear of God among the people are false shepherds. They must soon be removed from the sheep or they will devour them entirely.

9. Therefore it is easy to understand that all those are false shepherds who lead from the Creator to the creature.

Mutatis mutandis, many in the ‘Emergent’ and ‘Mega-Church’ movements would clearly fall under the heading of false shepherds were they active in the 16th century or were Zwingli alive today.  And most of all, so would the majority of televangelists.   Let him who has ears to hear, hear.

Christian History Magazine: Back Issues In PDF

I think there are a number of persons who might find this very interesting indeed.  Persons who simply register at Christian History Magazine can access, for free, back issues of the magazine in pdf.  And, in my opinion, many of the essays in and much of the content of the magazine is very, very informative.

Back issues are listed here, and they include one early number on Zwingli, one on Calvin, one on Hus, one on Tyndale, and a couple on Luther as well as LOTS of other things.

It’s (that is, the Magazine) also on Facebook, here.

Madonna’s Title as ‘Miss Inappropriate’ Verified Again

I don’t see how stripping down to nearly nothing supports a Pakistani girl shot by the Taliban; but so far as Madonna is concerned, if it draws attention to herself, anything is worth stripping for.

Clearly not content with flashing a nipple and ‘ironically’ calling Barack Obama a Muslim, Madonna has decided to wade in on the brutal killing of a Pakistani girl who was shot for speaking out against the Taliban.  Madonna continued to use her ‘MDNA Tour’ to make yet another controversial statement by strip-teasing to ‘show her support’ for Malala Yousafzai, who was shot on a schoolbus for writing a blog about how important education is.  On her Wednesday night performance in the Staples Centre, Los Angeles, the singer began by telling her audience that she wanted have a ‘serious talk’.  According to Entertainment Today, she told fans that the news that the 14-year-old had been gunned down by the Taliban had made her ‘cry’. She said: ‘The 14-year-old Pakistani girl who was shot on a schoolbus for writing a blog about how important education was to her.

‘The Taliban stopped her bus and shot her. Do you understand the sickness and absurdity of this?’  She rallied the crowd by shouting at them to support education and those who help women. But then the millionaire decided that this performance clearly was not a strong enough statement, and chose to ‘dedicate’ a strip tease to the girl, who is currently in a critical condition.  She turned her back to reveal ‘Malala’ written across it, according to The Hollywood Reporter.  ‘This song is for Malala,’ she said, before singing her ‘Human Nature’ song. But her attempt to make a stand in the name of Malala backfired after furious Pakistanis discovered her act.

Madonna doesn’t care about anyone but Madonna and any feigned concern for others is self-promotion in disguise.

This Time Chris Heard is Right: Standing Alongside Chris Rollston

I don’t always agree with Chris, but when I do you can bet the farm it’s about something important and this time he’s right to insist that it is our responsibility to stand by Chris Rollston’s side and come to his aid, in spite of Mr Blowers insistence that we not.

Read the whole piece, to which he concludes

Earlier today, I taught my students in “Religion 101: The History and Religion of Israel” about the book of Leviticus. Leviticus 19:16b (CEB) reads, “Do not stand by while your neighbor’s blood is shed.” According to peshat, the “legislator” here undoubtedly addresses actual physical violence. But according to derash, our Lord taught us that anger is like unto murder, and anyone we’re in a position to help is our neighbor. To my derash-attuned ears, the outcry from “the cheap seats” sounds like a chorus of Samaritans rising up to live out this ethic.

The Current Number of Zwingliana Has Arrived

It’s a grand day indeed!  The current issue of Zwingliana arrived in the mail.  The table of contents are available online but the contents themselves are only available in the print edition. There’s a three year ‘lag’ for online content. Subscribers to the Journal (and everyone should be a subscriber) thus have a three year advantage regarding access to essays and reviews.

Subscribe today.  Join the Zwingliverein.

Let us Go Up To Zion: Essays in Honour of H.G.M. Williamson on the Occasion of His Sixty-Fifth Birthday

Brill have sent the newly published Festschrift for the magnificently honor-worthy Hugh Williamson titled ‘Let us God Up to Zion: Essays in Honour of H.G.M. Williamson on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday‘ for review.

This volume honours Professor H. G. M. Williamson, Regius Professor of Hebrew at Oxford University through a collection of essays by colleagues and former students from across the globe. The various contributions intersect with the previous work of Professor Williamson, with special emphasis on the history of biblical research, study of the Hebrew language and Hebrew textual traditions, post-exilic historiography (Chronicles, Ezra-Nehemiah) and the prophets (especially Isaiah).

My review is posted here.