The Telegraph posted this map on the twitter- evidently drawn by someone who doesn’t know the difference between Syria and Iraq.
We expect this kind of thing from Fox News, but the Telegraph?
Thanks to Milton
“Pastor can you do my granny’s funeral?”
“I would but i stayed up late last night and cant make it”.
One of my dearest friends and colleagues told me that years ago and whilst I then did not fully agree, having seen both historically and in the present what people do to distort Scripture to their own ends and for their own purposes, I tend to now concur.
From the very moment that unlearned, unskilled, unspiritual interpreters laid their foul and unclean hands on the Bible they have done very little but befoul it. From the dim and ignorant Spiritualists of the 16th century to the Unitarian Universalists who followed them to the panderers of the present who use Scripture not for its proper purpose but to bolster their ideology with reprehensible cherry picking nonsensical pseudo-procedures.
Putting the Bible in the hands of the masses hasn’t resulted in a better, purer, Church; it has resulted in a diluted, ignorant assemblage of self appointed scripture blathering imbeciles who believe, in their corrupt and blackened hearts, that their understanding of Scripture actually has merit and EVEN rises to the level of adequate.
Consequently, we are surrounded by and the Church is infiltrated with the sorts of self appointed false teachers who, whilst actually only trained in journalism, or greco-Roman history, or math, or business, or chemistry, or biology (or anything but theology and biblical studies) act with the greatest presumption and hubris and unbelievably insist that they are not only right to interpret the Bible but that their interpretation has a grain or more of merit! What ignorance.
These same maladroits would be appalled if their field of study were treated the way the field of Biblical studies and the field of theology are treated. Let a biblical scholar say a word about geology or biology and the little heads of the dilettantes would explode but let a dilettante offer some ignorant mumblings about the Bible and when you ask them by what right they act shocked and appalled that anyone would question them. How dare you?!?! ‘My reading of the Bible is just as valid as yours’…
But of course that’s – plainly put – downright stupid. And stupid people maintain the stupid lie propounded by stupid people down through history.
Do, feel free, to read the Bible. Don’t, though, pretend that you comprehend its rich fullness just because you’ve read it once. Or twice. You no more understand the Bible by simply reading through it than you understand a trigonometry textbook as a 3 year old by looking at the pictures on the cover.
Finally, I realize that this might make me sound like a bit of an elitist. So be it. The Bible is TOO important to be left in the hands of distortioners. Hands off, unless you have hands prepared.
Calvin was a hard and industrious worker. His achievements were marvellous. He was pastor, professor and statesman. The Genevan edition of his works consists of twelve folio volumes. Besides these, there exist at Geneva two thousand of his sermons and lectures, taken down from his mouth as he delivered them. All this work he accomplished during the twenty-eight years which he spent in the ministry.
At one time he writes: “I have not time enough to look out of my house at the blessed sun, and if things continue thus I shall forget what sort of an appearance it has. When I have settled my usual business, I have so many letters to write, so many questions to answer, that many a night is spent without sleep.”
He was, however, cheerful and could say, “I compare myself to a warrior who has slain many enemies, when I have gotten over many heavy labors. I cannot refuse a man my aid, whatever time and trouble it might cost me.”
On the same subject, I find in a letter to Farel, dated Strasburg, April 20, 1539, the following sentence, “I do not remember, throughout this whole year, a single day which was more completely engaged with various occupations. For when the present messenger wished to carry along with him the beginning of my book, there were about twenty leaves which it required me to revise. In addition, there was the public lecture and I had also to preach; four letters were still to be written; some disputes to settle, and to reply to more than ten interruptions in the meantime, you will therefore excuse if my letter should be both brief and inaccurate.”
And that’s why Calvin was Calvin. He didn’t waste a second. He squeezed every drop of productivity that was humanly possible from each and every one of his days.
Vollmer, P., Good, J. I., & Roberts, W. H., John Calvin: Theologian, Preacher, Educator Statesman (pp. 92–93).