… The true mark by which to discern the Church of Jesus Christ [is] to be where his holy Gospel is purely and faithfully preached, declared, listened to and heeded; where the Sacraments are rightly administered, even though there continue to be some imperfections and flaws, as they will always be among men. On the contrary, where the Gospel is not declared, heard and received, there we recognize by no means the Church. – John Calvin
They absolutely love the kind of anti-Catholic drivel featured in their ignorant and silly pseudo-reporting.
The Catholic church isn’t a hate group and if the imbeciles at the HuffPo had half a scintilla of sense at all they would realize it and wouldn’t aid and abet the stupidest of groups which insist otherwise.
But since the HuffPo and its editors seem to believe that any anti-Catholic garbage is worth running, then they need to be reminded that they are by there doing demonstrating to the world that they are nothing other than a ‘journalistic’ version of Westboro not Baptist not Church. That’s right- they are, in their own way, just as vile in their hate-speech spewing and bile spitting senselessness as the Westboro cult is.
As I said to the HuffPo- “how ignorant you are- how willing to pander to the silliest of ideas in your anti-catholic hatred. You’re shameless.”
I need you too much.
“Identity theft” seems a uniquely 21st-century crime, and is very common in the contemporary world. But in a new book, Prof. Miriam Eliav-Feldon of Tel Aviv University‘s Department of Historyobserves that identity theft and associated fraud have deep historical roots. From royal pretenders to women masquerading as men and those who resort to fraud to conceal their religious faith, history is brimming with stories of impostors. The battle between frauds and those who try to thwart them has been constant from the beginning of humanity, she says – and the battle is still going strong.
With so many frauds and impostors throughout the early modern period, the question of how and why they succeeded in their deception remains a mystery, notes Prof. Eliav-Feldon, who identifies it as one of the key issues of the phenomenon. The answer, she says, relies on a different notion of truth.
One example is the tale of David Reuveni, who in 1524 came to Venice and declared himself a prince of the lost tribes of Israel. Appearing before the Pope and various kings of Europe, he vowed to forge an alliance with European leaders to liberate the holy land from the Muslims. Despite the absence of proof, Jews and non-Jews alike rallied to his cause. It was years before his deception was uncovered.
Prof. Eliav-Feldon believes that Reuveni succeeded so well because kings and church prelates alike desperately wanted his tale to be true. “They wanted to believe that they had a potential ally — and were willing to suspend judgment because it fit their interests,” she explains. “Many impostors succeeded for a long time not because everybody believed them, but because they had no way of confirming they were impostors.”
Fascinating. People believe fraud not because they’re foolish- but because they wish the fraud to be true. This nicely explains why the purveyors of Talpiot, for example, continue to maintain its purported significance: they wish it to be so. The ‘Lead Codices’ sycophants wish it to be true. And on, and on.
In the modern times in which we live where every body has got the attention span of a gnat it is not surprising to see that many times some pastors opt to dress too casually in t-shirts and jeans to try and emulate popular stand up comedians. Well it actually works…these churches surely get filled up very soon. Most of the churches actually have high turn overs with new faces literally fighting for empty front row seats every week (and an even higher numbers leaving through the back door in search of funnier and more entertaining routines).
Church growth gurus now advocate for “hip and relevant” programmes that are geared to effect maximum entertainment and comedic fun at the expense of discipleship and Bible study. The youth groups are actually not far behind. (Oops! I guess that is the understatement of the generation seeing that its in church youth groups…
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Never existed. Not so far as the writers of the biblical text are concerned. Take, for example, Luke’s perception of Jesus as described by that fellow named John the Baptizer (in ch 3) :
7 John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. 9 Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”
10 And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?” 11 In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.” 12 Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?” 13 He said to them, “Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.” 14 Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what should we do?” He said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be satisfied with your wages.”
15 As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, 16 John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you withe the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
Note in particular John’s no nonsense final statement:
His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.
Jesus comes bringing judgment. The hippy Jesus never existed. The real, the ‘Historical’ Jesus came to divide, to disunite, to rend asunder mothers from daughters and fathers from sons and husbands from wives: he came to force a choice. One either chooses God or one chooses judgment. There is no middle way, no other alternative.
This, the biblical Jesus, makes the emergents and the seekers exceedingly uncomfortable- to such an extent that they avoid such texts and urge others simply to embrace some facile and unbiblical pseudo-‘love’. Just ‘love God’ they cry (usually with real tears for emphasis). As if love for God weren’t something concrete and real and directed specifically TO God. As if loving a worm were the same thing as loving God.
For such souls the biblical truth that God is Love is contorted, twisted, and distorted to read ‘Love is God’. ‘Love’- or better their false view of real love- is turned into an idol worshiped and adored. But love apart from God and outside of God and without God is precisely that- an idol.
Flee the wishy-washy pseudo Jesus proclaimed by the idolaters. He never existed.
An essay by Mladen Popovic is up on Academia.edu which may be of interest to folk who follow Scrolls scholarship-
Anthropology, Pneumatology, and Demonology in Early Judaism: The Two Spirits Treatise (1QS III, 13–IV, 26) and Other Texts from the Dead Sea Scrolls.
From the 2010 conference, to be published in ‘And God Breathed into Man the Breath of Life’ – Dust of the Ground and Breath of Life (Gen 2.7): The Development of a Dualistic Anthropology in Early Judaism and Christianity, and Their Umwelts (ed. J.T.A.G.M. van Ruiten and G.H. van Kooten; Themes in Biblical Narrative; Leiden: Brill, forthcoming.) at http://rug.academia.edu/MladenPopovic