Where in the World is Chris Tilling Now?

He’s ‘changed’…

tillingA self-described soccer hooligan who routinely beat up rival fans is undergoing gender reassignment surgery, the Express&Echo reported.

Becci Allen, Chris Tilling, 36, of Exeter, England, made her decision to transition four years ago and says she “cannot wait to have [her] operation” sometime after April, the outlet wrote. “My only regret is that I should have done this years ago.”

At 6-foot-2 and formerly weighing 336 pounds, Allen Tilling used to spend weekends brawling at club and England national team matches, using violence to suppress her desires to become a woman, she said. “I was always fighting something I wanted to be,” Allen Tilling told the paper. “I am not proud of what I used to do.”

None of us are proud of what you used to do Chris, none of us….

Today With Calvin

It was 11 January, 1546, that Calvin’s Order for the Visitation of the Ministers and Parishes dependent on Geneva appeared. It

calvin87… shows that at this time the reformer realized the need for drawing up a new draft for organizing a regular inspection of the country churches, in order to ensure the maintenance of good order and the supervision of ministers in the exercise of their functions, as well as of the congregations in the discharge of their religious duties. Calvin presented his draft to the meeting of the Council on January 25, 1546 when it was adopted. The Register of the Venerable Company reports the introduction of these visitations in these terms: “In the month of (? January) 1546, it was resolved by the brethren met in general assembly, that henceforth visitations be made of all the parishes of the Church of Geneva. It was also agreed by those present, and ordained, that two counsellors should also go with the ministers to visit the local lords, so that the minister on his side might make enquiry concerning the doctrine and life of the pastor of the place and the counsellors of the life of the squire.” This rule later found a place in the Ordinances of 1561.*

Can you imagine such a thing taking place today? Every mega-church would be closed down and Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, and their ilk would be shown the outbound road of town and ordered never to return. And that’s why we call them ‘the good old days’.

Here are the five major purposes of the ‘inspection’:

calvin2First, in order to maintain proper uniformity of doctrine in the whole body of the Church of Geneva, that is to say in the city and also in the parishes dependent on the Seigneury, the Magistracy is to elect two of their Lordships of the Council and similarly the Ministers two of their Congregation, who will be charged with going once a year to visit each parish, to enquire whether the Ministry of the place have accepted any doctrine in any sense new and repugnant to the purity of the gospel.

Second, this Visitation is to enquire whether the Minister preaches edifyingly, or whether there be anything at all scandalous, or unfitting to the instruction of the people because it is obscure, or treats of superfluous questions, or exercises too great rigour, or some similar fault.

Third, to exhort the people to attendance at Service, to have a liking for it, and to find profit in it for Christian living; and to expound what is the office of the Ministry, in order that they understand how they ought to discharge it.

calvin3Fourth, to know whether the Minister is diligent not only in preaching but also in visiting the sick, and particularly in admonishing those that need it, and to prevent anything that might be for the dishonour of God.

Fifth, to discover whether he lead an honest life, and show a good example, or if he commit any dissoluteness or frivolity which renders him contemptible, or if he get on well with his people and likewise with all his family.

Yessir- the mega-churchers would be finished, and so would a lot of so called churches where everything but the Gospel is preached and ministers of all sorts of depraved cravings fleece the flock.

Oh for the really, really good old days…

*J.K.S. Reid, Calvin: Theological Treatises, p. 73.

More Professorial Misconduct

Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations Chair John Darnell resigned as chair and agreed to a one-year suspension from the Yale faculty after engaging in several violations of University policy, including maintaining an intimate relationship with a student under his direct supervision, Darnell said in an email sent to the department Tuesday afternoon.

Darnell’s other violations consisted of participating in the review of a faculty member with whom he had an intimate relationship and using his leadership role in Egyptology to cover up his illicit behavior, he wrote in his Tuesday email. Such actions are prohibited by the Yale University Faculty Handbook, which states that professors must avoid sexual relationships with students over whom they have “direct pedagogical or supervisory responsibilities.”

Good grief.  Can’t anyone in a position of authority control themselves?  Absurd perversity knows no boundaries and the quest for sexual conquests is as common in the Ivy League as it is in the slum.  Sadly do you know what the worst part is?  That this isn’t even surprising.  Indeed, it’s almost to be expected.

Sad News: The Death of Rene Kieffer

Tommy Wasserman has the obituary of a New Testament scholar recently passed away.

René Kieffer, Professor emeritus of Uppsala University, has passed away on 8 January at the age of 83. He was born in Aumetz in France and raised in Luxembourg. After studies in Paris and Germany he felt a call to become a priest and theologian in the Dominican order in Paris. This process started with eight years of studies in philosophy and theology. Because of his interest in the Bible, Kieffer was sent to the École Biblique in Jerusalem for two years of special education in order to become a professor there, but he felt isolated in this environment and longed for a pastoral work.

And more.  May he rest in peace.

The History Channel Is Going To Distort The Bible… Again

The trailer for the upcoming Discovery Channel ‘special’ is up.  I watched it.  I’m unimpressed.  Two things jumped out right off.  First, the ‘Jerusalem’ David shows up at hardly represents the actual 10th c. BCE village that actually was.


And second, at the birth of Jesus why, oh why, must they have had 3 ‘Wise men’?  Why?  There’s nothing in the biblical text to suggest there were three- it’s simply one of those ridiculous misrepresentations that whomsoever advised the filmmakers should have screamed at the top of their lungs about in order to ensure it wasn’t repeated. Further- they didn’t appear at the BIRTH of Jesus but later, when he was in a house, per Matthew. Not in the stable, per Luke. Imbeciles.


The directors are better known for pseudo-theology as embodied in ‘Touched By an Angel’.  If these two examples are ‘par for the course’, this ‘special’ will prove to be yet another in a long line of History Channel productions which are simply garbage.

You can, if you want, watch the trailer here-

I really wish the History Channel would stick with shows about aliens who built the pyramids. That’s where they do their ‘best’ work… and that they’d leave the Bible alone.

It’s The Anniversary of Gottfried Locher’s Death

Among students of the Swiss Reformation the name of Gottfried Locher towers above the rest. Locher’s brilliant contributions to that fecund period of theological development are without peer. He died on the 11th of January, 1996.

His most influential contribution, I think, is his massive and utterly thorough Die Zwinglische Reform im Rahmen der europäischen Kirchengeschichte. Tremendously difficult to find, it nonetheless is worth the effort.

There’s a very brief bio of the great scholar here:

locher_gottfried_wilhelmgeboren 29.4.1911 Elberfeld (heute Wuppertal),gestorben 11.1.1996 Bern, ref., von Zürich. Sohn des Gottfried Wilhelm, Pfarrers der niederländ.-ref. Gemeinde Wuppertal-Elberfeld, und der Berta geb. Oberman. ∞ 1936 Irene Schöffner.

Theologiestud. in Königsberg, Zürich, Bonn. 1936 Pfarrer in Binningen, 1941 in Feuerthalen, 1954 in Riehen. 1948 Dr. theol., 1954 PD an der Univ. Zürich, 1958-78 o. Prof. für systemat. Theologie und Dogmengeschichte in Bern (1968-69 Rektor). L.s wissenschaftl. Interesse galt der (auf ihre Aktualität hin befragten) Reformationstheologie.

Er legte profunde Studien zu Heinrich Bullinger, Johannes Calvin, zur Berner Reformation und v.a. zu Huldrych Zwingli vor, dessen Theologie er “im Lichte seiner Christologie” und dessen Reformation “im Rahmen der europ. Kirchengeschichte” darstellte. Dr. h.c. der Univ. Basel und Debrecen (Ungarn).

Continue to rest in peace, good sir.

Oh That’s Just Sad Pandering For Publicity

How sad that things have come to such a state at Pepperdine, a formerly great school, that it has had to stoop to inviting the king of publicity questing ‘pastors’ Rick Warren to ‘lecture’ simply, apparently, to get itself in the news.

Telling is the advert, which mentions God not at all but Warren’s ‘achievements’ instead.

It’s a sad day for Pepperdine.  Surely it doesn’t need to be in the public eye that badly.