The Idol This Age Adores…

The god whose altar this age worships at is called ‘license’ but it also goes by ‘freedom’.  Greater idols have yet to be seen.

Even Christians have, in large numbers, come to this false god’s altar and bowed to it with the massa perditionis. 

They need to be reminded of something:  there is one God, and his name is not ‘freedom’.

It Was Predestined…

After being king of biblioblogdom for years, and years, and years, it seems the Good Lord has seen fit to move me to 7th place.  I don’t mind.  Do you know how taxing it is to be amazingly interesting year after year after year after year?  This will be a nice break.

Plus- I’m number 7.  The number of perfection.  And I’m ahead of Bart.  I’m perfect and Bart isn’t.

Plus- and let’s all fact it- I’m still #1 in your hearts, ye millions.

So, don’t cry for me Argentina.  At the end of the day- this is still true:

contac

1. Jesus Creed
2. Observatório Bíblico
3. Bibbia Blog
4. New Life
5. Teknia
6. Bible Places
7. Zwinglius Redivivus
8. The Bart Ehrman Blog

Indiana’s Law of Religious Freedom and the 1st ‘Church’ of Cannabis

Well done, Indiana.  Here’s another law you should familiarize yourselves with: the law of unintended consequences.  That’s the law you really need to keep in mind.  Try it.  You might find yourselves in less of a mess.

The First Church of Cannabis Inc. has been approved by  Indiana’s secretary of state after the state’s religious freedom legislation was signed into law last week.

The church’s founder Bill Levin said he filed paperwork in direct response to Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was signed into law by Gov. Mike Pence last Thursday. Secretary of State Connie Lawson approved the church as a religious corporation with the stated intent “to start a church based on love and understanding with compassion for all.”

Cannibis is listed as the church’s sacrament in its doctrine, Levin said, and he will set up a church hierarchy. The church will plan to grow hemp, he said, though it will not buy or sell marijuana.

“If someone is smoking in our church, God bless them,” Levin said. “This is a church to show a proper way of life, a loving way to live life. We are called ‘cannataerians.’”

Depraved wankers.  The door for which was held wide open by Indiana’s terribly shortsighted state legislature.

Jews as Devils: Antisemitism in 16th c. Art

This is a famous painting from around 1500.  It shows a fairly European Jesus bearing the cross whilst surrounded by the ‘Jewish’ crowd.  Two things are noteworthy: Jesus is portrayed as anything but a Jew.  And, Jews are portrayed as anything but human.

bosch_cristo

Antisemitism was in the air in Europe in the 16th century.  Tragically.  Yet the fact remains, the worldview of most Europeans in that period would have not been troubled at all by anti-Jewish sentiments.

That’s why it’s so important that we not follow in their footsteps.  We cannot allow the world to become a place where it’s ok to be antisemitic.  But it is slowly but surely drifting in that direction.  It is up to us to stop it.  Otherwise… it will be horrific for our children and grandchildren.

Who Placed The Noose?

Is the Duke Noose a hoax?  Is it real?  Is it a publicity stunt?

I have no idea if this is a hoax or legit, but over the past few years these types of  incidents have been hoaxes more often than not. The fact that the newly formed “Duke People of Color Caucus” was quick to pounce on the news doesn’t help the credibility of this story.

Duke University students found a noose hanging from a tree along the school’s main thoroughfare early on Wednesday morning, rattling the campus less than two weeks after a black student was allegedly taunted by white students singing a racist chant.

Police removed the noose, made of yellow string, from a tree in Bryan Center Plaza around 2.45am. A spokesman for the department said police were still gathering information on the case.

Larry Moneta, vice-president for student affairs, emailed students hours later, writing: “I can’t begin to describe the disgust and anger I felt, and still feel.

“To whomever committed this hateful and stupid act, I just want to say that if your intent was to create fear, it will have the opposite effect,” he wrote.

Moneta said campus services would be available for all students, and “if we’re able to identify [anyone] responsible for committing this act of intimidation, they will be held fully accountable.”

The Duke People of Color Caucus, an anonymous group recently formed to address racism at the school, posted a statement urging black people to take care: “This campus is not a safe space, and has proven beyond any doubt that it is a hostile environment for any and all black people.”

Let’s see how this flushes out.

Exodus as a Mnemo-Narrative: An Archaeological Perspective

From Aren Maeir,

…a paper on the Exodus from a cultural/collective memory perspective, which just appeared in a volume edited by Tom Levy et al., the proceedings of a conference on the Exodus which was held in San Diego two years ago. It’s called Exodus as a Mnemo-Narrative: An Archaeological Perspective. Pp. 409–19 in Israel’s Exodus in Transdisciplinary Perspective – Text, Archaeology, Culture, and Geoscience, eds. T. E. Levy, T. Schneider and W. H. C. Propp. Quantitative Methods in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Heidelberg: Springer.

The abstract states:

I discuss possible archaeological correlates from the second and first millennia BCE Levant and Egypt—spanning the Middle and Late Bronze Ages, the Iron Age I and II, and the Persian and Hellenistic periods— which may have served as background(s) for the formation, preservation, and transformation of the biblical and extra-biblical Exodus traditions. I will attempt to assess the character and relevance of strands of evidence from diverse periods and contexts and discuss the possible interface, and/ or lack thereof, between these artifactually-based cultural events and the various Exodus narratives as reflected in the biblical texts and traditions.

Get a copy of the book from your local library and give it a read.

Trauma and Traumatization in Individual and Collective Dimensions: Insights from Biblical Studies and Beyond

978-3-525-53616-2The contributors of this volume demonstrate how a highly developed expertise in interpreting Biblical and cognate literature is a substantial part of the overall discourse on the historical, literary, social, political, and religious dimensions of trauma in past and present. This idea is based on the assumption that trauma is not only a modern concept which derives from 20th century psychiatry: It is an ancient phenomenon already which predates modern discourses. Trauma studies will thus profit from how Theology – specifically Biblical exegesis – and the Humanities deal with trauma in terms of religion, history, sociology, and politics.

The folk at V&R have sent a review copy, and said review will appear in SJOT in due course.

The Biblical Qumran Scrolls

56379The Biblical Qumran Scrolls paperback edition presents in three volumes all the Hebrew biblical manuscripts recovered from the eleven caves at Qumran. It provides a transcription of each identifiable fragment in consecutive biblical order together with the textual variants it contains. These manuscripts antedate by a millennium the previously available Hebrew manuscripts. They are the oldest, the best, and the most authentic witnesses to the texts of the Scriptures as they circulated in Jerusalem and surrounding regions at the time of the birth of Christianity and Rabbinic Judaism. The purpose is to collect in three paperback volumes all the biblical editions originally published in a wide variety of books and articles.

Volume 1: Genesis–Kings
Volume 2: Isaiah-Twelve Minor Prophets
Volume 3: Psalms-Chronicles

I have not seen a review of this.  Has anyone?

This Has to Be A Joke… Hugh Jackman as Paul the Apostle…???

And even if it isn’t, it’s a joke.

A new faith-based project with A-list stars involved is coming now from Warner Bros. The project, Apostle Paul, is being developed at the studio for Hugh Jackman to star in the role as the Jewish man of God (also known as Saul of Tarsus) who crossed over to speak to the Romans and preach the word.

Please, Lord, let it be a prank.  We can’t take any more of these idiotic misrepresentations of early Christianity.  We already have Simcha, and Downey, and Burnett, and the HuffPo, and CNN, and the Discovery Channel, and the History Channel.  Who else do we need to bastardize the biblical text?

The Folly of Being A Creature of Dust and Living As Such

ZwingliBullingerDevotionalBook2When the mind begins to contemplate God, to talk and commune with Him about the things it has in common with Him, suddenly the flesh, fashioned from clay, draws it back. “Fool,” it cries, “Where are you going? There is no Deity; much less one that cares for our affairs.” Thus each part of man constantly looks back upon its origin. The mind yearns for light, purity and goodness, inasmuch as its nature is light, its substance pure and devoted to the right, seeing that it derives its origin from the Godhead; the body inclines to idleness, laziness, darkness and dullness, as it is lazy and indolent by nature, and without reason and intelligence, seeing that it consists of earth.  — Huldrych Zwingli

Stepping Away From the Tomfoolery for a Minute…

I’m proud as punch today to have been informed that, along with my responsibility as Language Editor for SJOT I’ve been asked to become the Book Review Editor, (N. America) for the same.  It’s a great journal with a tremendous editorial team and I’m super privileged to be so engaged.

I’ll be contacting some of you in the not too distant future about volumes to review.  Stay tuned.  And public thanks to NPL for the assignment.

sjot