No, Gay Activists and the Politicians in their Pockets Aren’t Trying to Force you To Do Anything…

But if this isn’t coercion, pray tell, what is?

California lawmakers are considering making the Boy Scouts of America and other youth groups that do not accept gay, transgender or atheist members and leaders ineligible for some state tax exemptions.

Some cities have withdrawn free rent and other subsidies from the Boy Scouts over the years, but legislation introduced by state Sen. Ricardo Lara would make California the first state to punish the Scouts for its policy prohibiting gay members and troop leaders.

The bill by the Long Beach Democrat is scheduled for an initial committee hearing on Wednesday.

The legislation would deny tax-exempt status to nonprofit youth groups that discriminate on the basis of gender identity, race, sexual orientation, nationality, religion, or religious affiliation.

The Legislative Analyst’s Office says that means the Boy Scouts and its California affiliates would have to pay corporate taxes on donations and income from fees.

So much for the gentle persuasion of public debate.  The tool of the times is coercion, demonization, and the use of other manipulative devices to bring about the aim of forcing all of society to accept, and support, the views and lifestyles of the few.

Zurich, April 7-9, 1522

April 7-9, 1522.  Zurich.  The Zurich Magistrates and Clergy met to discuss reform of worship and the right understanding of the Church.

As Robert Walton notes

In speaking of the church Zwingli employed an Augustinian dualism which made it possible for the “external structure of the church to conform to the fragmented structure of political reality”. His answer given in April of 1522 to the Suffragan Bishop of Constance’s warning that the Zürich magistrates should not depart from the church outside of which there was no salvation emphasizes this dualism. Zwingli agreed that no one was saved outside the church which was made up of all those who confessed with their hearts and their mouths that Christ was the risen Lord. The members of this church he added might be among the Indians or the Scythians.

Zwingli’s account of the visit of the Bishop’s delegates can be read here, in his Acta Tiguri 7. 8. 9. diebus aprilis 1522, in a letter he sent to his friend Erasmus Fabricius, which concludes like this-

Hęc sunt, Erasme, frater charissime, quę hisce diebus accepimus vel dedimus vulnera coram sacerdotum senatorumque ordine; hę rursum medelę, quibus infirmis succurrimus. Tumultuarie omnia, ut a nobis acta, ita scripta sunt; nam ille domo attulerat orationem, ego vero, quo stabam vestigio, pugnare coactus sum ac defendere. Quod si quę minus dixi vel amplius, atque acta sunt, imbecillitati humanę id imputandum arbitror; quę quam parum rememorando possit, vix agnoscit. Summam tamen actionis omnino attigi, sive apud senatum sive sacerdotum ordinem, sive privatim habitam. Vespera enim illa qua mane cum sacerdotum ordine egerant, casu in eos incidi et multa cum illis contuli. Ex quibus omnibus didici, ubi loci ulcus eos urat. Vale, et, si ad Bovillum nostrum scripseris, salutes eum meo nomine.

What Next?

Genesis is off to the publisher (thank heaven).

Conference Announcement: In Honor of Victor Hurowitz

Via Joseph Lauer-

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
The Department of Bible, Archeology, and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
 
are honored to invite you to a conference in memory of
Prof. Victor Avigdor Hurowitz z”l
Tuesday 23 April, 2013 (13 Iyar 5773) 14.00-17.00
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva
Marcus Family Campus, Kreitman Building
Oren Conference Hall (Aleph)
Program
Remarks in memory of Victor Avigdor Hurowitz
Dr. Shamir Yona, Department Chairperson: Bible, Archaeology, and
  Ancient Near Eastern Studies, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Prof. Shalom Paul, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  Assistant, Neighbor, and Colleague: About Victor
Prof. Daniel J. Lasker, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Reflections
Dr. Shirley Graetz, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
  Avigdor, My Teacher and Mentor
Lectures
Prof. Shmuel Ahituv, Department of Bible, Archeology, and Ancient Near
Eastern studies, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev; Editor of the
Miqra Le-Yisrael commentary series
  “Iron Sharpens Iron” – An Author and Editor Give Birth to a Book
Prof. Alexander Rofé, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  Why are there so many Theological Reworkings in Wisdom Literature?
Break
Prof. Ed Greenstein, Bar Ilan University
  Finding Our Way in the Four “Ways” of Proverbs 30:18-19
Prof. Nili Shupak, Haifa University
  “They made heirs for themselves of books, of instructions they had
  composed” (Papyrus Chester Beatty 4): On the new commentary of
  Proverbs (Avigdor’s Twins)
For further information, please contact Dr. Tova Forti tforti@bgu.ac.il

Where in the World Is Chris Tilling Now?

He’s insanely taking legal action against some poor priests…

Having just let fly...

Having just let fly…

Romanian British man sues priests for failing to exorcise flatulent demons. With demons allegedly still farting freely in his home, Chris Tilling Madalin Ciculescu is suing the priests who performed his exorcism for religious fraud.

Oh Chris, you’ll never, in all eternity, be cured of your flatulence.  Don’t sue. And stop blaming demons.  He who smelt it, dealt it.

Interesting Question

At Bible and Interpretation, Fernando Bermejo-Rubio asks Why is the Hypothesis that Jesus Was an Anti-Roman Rebel Alive and Well? Yeah, why?

Despite the endless attempts to discredit the hypothesis that Jesus of Nazareth was involved in seditious activities (and to discredit also its proponents), it provides the best explanation of the available evidence. This article does not merely advance a view to be put along with other reconstructions of Jesus, but argues that any reconstruction of the Galilean preacher that does not consistently integrate the seditious aspects is strongly prejudiced and lacks scholarly soundness.

Sounds bold doesn’t it?  Enjoy.

New From ASOR – “The Ancient Near East Today” – A Free Newsletter

ane-today-banner

ASOR announces

This monthly e-newsletter disseminates ideas, insights and discoveries to Friends of ASOR. You can become a Friend for free, you only need to register. The ANE Today appears on the second Tuesday of each month (beginning in April 2013) and features contributions from diverse academics, a forum featuring debates of current developments from the field, and links to news and resources. The ANE Today covers the entire Near East, and each issue will present discussions ranging from the state of biblical archaeology to archaeology after the Arab Spring. Sign up today for free and be a part of this community of discovery!

Register for Friends of ASOR

Look for these exciting articles in the April issue:

  • Greg Williams, Archaeology and Cultural Heritage in Egypt after Mubarak – Egypt has changed dramatically since the fall of Mubarak. Has archaeology?

  • Beverly Goodman, Ancient Mediterranean Tsunamis and their Modern Significance – Geo-archaeology is showing that Mediterranean tsunamis were more frequent than once thought. Will we be better prepared?

  • Forum—Biblical Artifacts in Limbo

    • Jonathan Rosenbaum, The Dilemma of Denial: Scholarly Publication Policies and the Illusion of PowerThe controversial “Gospel of Jesus’s Wife” shows important artifacts still reach the public via the marketplace. Now, scholars need to strengthen academic standards and publishing.

    • Christopher Rollston, The Use of Inscriptions from the Antiquities Market: Polarized Positions and Pragmatic Proposals. Plunder and faked artifacts have always been a problem. Pragmatism suggests rules for treating and thinking about these items.

    • Lynn Swartz Dodd, ASOR and Archaeological Ethics. Should academic organizations tacitly endorse looting, buying, selling and faking? That’s where ethics codes come in.

‘What is Emergent Christianity?’ Ok, I’ll Cut to the Chase

I was asked, in connection with a previous post, how I would define ’emergent Christianity’.  Here it is-

Emergent Christianity is a movement within (yet not exactly of) Christianity which – whilst jettisoning Scripture as the font of faith and practice- replaces it with a Madison Avenue-esque marketing scheme designed to attract adherents of its ‘form’ (though it is authentically malformed) of belief.  It is a movement rooted in secularism which strives to appeal to those whose Christianity is shallow enough and theologically ignorant enough to adopt its anti-clericalism and anti-denominationalism.

Consequently, though it ‘appears’ to be Christian it is as far from historic Christianity as the sun is from Pluto.

Contested Issues in Christian Origins and the New Testament

45434This new volume, by Luke Timothy Johnson,

… takes on some of the most contested issues in the study of Christian Origins and the New Testament — from the historical Jesus and the Jesus of the Gospels, through exegetical studies of Luke-Acts and Paul, to questions pertaining to the development of early Christian history, relations with Judaism, the uses of polemic, sexuality, and law.

The folk at Brill have sent along a copy which, I’ve reviewed here.