Daily Archives: 16 Dec 2015

Mary and Joseph Were Not Refugees

Making Joseph and Mary into representatives of modern refugees violates history, minimizes the suffering of the present, and misrepresents the suffering of the past.  #AnachronismIsNeverTruth

It might make you feel better to think that Joseph and Mary should have been treated better and that, concomitantly, so should modern refugees.  But you violate truth by misrepresentation.

Of course refugees should be treated better, humanely.  But turning ancient travelers into refugees accomplishes absolutely NOTHING.

I Have Finally Come to Appreciate the Value of NT Wright’s Work

Amen, and amen.  His books do have a useful purpose.

Wheaton College: From Higher Ed to Lower Ethics

Wheaton has jumped the shark.  It has abandoned higher ed and opted instead for lower ethics.

A tenured Wheaton College political science professor who pledged to wear a hijab during Advent in support of her Muslim neighbors has been placed on administrative leave. Not for donning the Islamic head covering, but over “significant questions regarding the theological implications” of her explanation of why she was doing so.

“Wheaton College faculty and staff make a commitment to accept and model our institution’s faith foundations with integrity, compassion, and theological clarity,” the college stated in announcing the decision. “As they participate in various causes, it is essential that faculty and staff engage in and speak about public issues in ways that faithfully represent the college’s evangelical Statement of Faith.”

Larycia Alaine Hawkins, an associate professor who has taught at Wheaton since 2007, announced last week that she’d don the traditional headscarf as a sign of human, theological, and embodied solidarity.

“I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book,” she wrote in a Facebook post on December 10. “And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God.”

Whatever you think of her act, she has the RIGHT to do it.  She’s free to behave as she wishes and is answerable only to God for it.  Not to over-Republicanized college authorities and donors.

Higher ed is dead at Wheaton.  Because academic freedom is.

I’m Going to Break a Cardinal Rule and Endorse a Presidential Candidate

My choice:

write in

Maybe It’s Time To Move On…

If you’re still talking about the book you wrote a year or two ago, maybe it’s time to move on and do some work now instead of living in the past.

Or are you done?

Learning Christ Through the Catechism of the Bohemian Brethren (1522)

The Catechism of the Bohemian Brethren was published in 1522. Whilst reading it again today I came to these sections and I thought to myself- given the adoration of Mary among so many Methodists and Papists- that it would be worth sharing them with the hope that our Mariolaters might be more perfectly instructed:

47. Dost thou honor any other being‚ as thou honorest God the Lord?

I do not.

48. Why not?

Because God has forbidden it, when He said: “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them.” “Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve Him alone.”

49. In what do men generally err in the world?

In three things: in idolatry, in false “will-worship”‡ and vain hope, in deadly lusts. These three things comprise all their ways of error.

50. What is idolatry?

It is to transfer, internally or externally, that honor and worship, which alone belong to God the Lord, to a visible or invisible creature, rational or irrational, spiritual or carnal: internally, with things self-depending and fundamental, that is, with faith, love, hope, and spiritual affections, such as fear, zeal, and with the conscience, &c.: externally, with the mouth, or with works, in the hope of gaining some spiritual or carnal good.

51. Dost thou believe in the Virgin Mary‚ or any other saints?

I do not.

52. Why not?

Because they are neither God, nor Creator, nor Redeemer, nor Saviour, but creatures bought and blessed. But I have a belief concerning them.

53. What dost thou believe concerning the Virgin Mary?

That she was highly favored, blessed of God among women—full of grace and blessed was the fruit of her womb; that she was pure before she bare, when she bore, and after bearing, a humble handmaid of the Lord, and a blessed one, on account of her humble faith well-pleasing to God, a careful and faithful mother of the Lord Jesus; that she assuredly possesses an inheritance in eternal happiness; and that she enjoyed all these things, by the grace of God, and through an interest in the sufferings of Jesus Christ, in and through whom God did great things for her, and received her soul into its eternal rest.

54. What dost thou hold concerning the other saints?

That they are chosen, by the grace of God, to be partakers of salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ, and that, by the sending of the Holy Ghost, they came to be saints beloved in Christ, cleansed by His blood; that living here by faith, and loving God above all things, and their neighbors, honoring God and serving Him, some died a common death, some left the earth oppressed by men, enduring martyrdom for the Word’s sake, yea suffering death at the hands of idolators, false prophets, and lovers of the world, because of the true honor they gave God, and the living hope they had in Christ.

55. Is it proper to honor the Virgin Mary‚ or the other saints?

It is proper to honor them with that honor which is their due.

56. What is the honor which is their due?

That we love them with a proper love, and that, by obeying and following them in the good which they accomplished, we praise God for them.

57. In how far are we to obey them?

In so far as their admonitions are concerned, in so far as is written in the law, and in so far, especially, as the Virgin Mary says; “Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it.”*

58. In how far are we to follow them?

In their virtuous lives, by which they followed Christ, with a living faith and real love, striving for the hope of eternal life, and, while striving, faithful unto death, forsaking the world and its errors, together with all vanity.

59. With what honors is it not proper to honor them?

With those mentioned above, which belong alone to God and the Lamb. Hence it is not proper to worship them, to desire of them grace, help and intercessions, to seek other good gifts of them, or to pray to them to be preserved from evil: in none of these things must we trust in them. Nor is it proper to call the Virgin Mary our only hope, or a mediatrix, or a most gracious mother, or to pray to her with sighs. Consequently, it is not proper to show them outward honors, such as celebrating saints’ days, bringing offerings, supplicating or giving alms in their name, fasting, swearing, or vowing by them, going on pilgrimages to their shrines, or building churches to their memory.

60. But is it proper to bow down before and worship the image of the Lord Christ, or of the saints?

It is not proper, since God the Lord says: “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, nor any likeness of anything; thou shalt not bow down to them, nor serve them.”† “I am the Lord.”

Amen and amen.

_____
*Edmund de Schweinitz, trans., The Catechism of the Bohemian Brethren: Translated from the Old German, with an Introduction (Bethlehem: Henry T. Clauder, 1869), 11–12.

Zwingli is Better than Luther

Here’s the proof:

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Zwingli and Luther in the Christmas Tree- Zwingli more highly exalted. Amen

Luther’s Thoughts on Marriage

The annoyances of married life are [almost] unbearable to men. Accordingly Socrates is reported to have given a good answer to a man who was contemplating marriage: Whatever you may do, you’ll regret it.

In paradise, where there was no such ardor and raging passion, marriage must have been very pleasant. Flesh and blood were different then. But we have become so infected with original sin that there’s no kind of life which, once undertaken, isn’t a matter of regret at times. This is the fault of our original sin, which has defiled and deformed all human nature.

It seems to me that it is the pleasantest kind of life to have a moderate household, to live with an obedient wife, and to be content with little.” – Martin Luther

Conrad Versus the Plague

There’s a new online game you can play.  It’s set in Basel, in the year 1610.  How cool is that?!?!  Here’s the story:

Ich bin Konrad. Alle sind Konrad, die in das Online-Computerspiel «Basel 1610» eintauchen. Konrad ist die Hauptfigur des «Serious Adventure Games», welches das Historische Museum Basel und das Kunsthistorische Seminar der Universität zusammen mit der Agentur für Kommunikationsdesign ui/deation und den Spielentwicklern von Good Evil entwickelt haben.

Konrad ist ein junger angehender Arzt, der nach Basel kommt, um beim berühmten Stadtarzt Felix Platter ein Medizinstudium zu absolvieren. Er hat eine etwas androgyne Erscheinung, damit sich auch Spielerinnen in die Figur hineindenken können, wie Daniele Turini, Leiter eCulture im Museum, bei der Präsentation des Spiels erklärte.

I have the feeling I’m not going to get anything done today.

The Pandering Slathering for Attention Church

Drew has it right in his denunciation of the theological inappropriateness of the whole Star Wars in Church wretchedness.

If your church has a service based on a Star Wars theme, get out of Sodom.

Today’s Free Book from Logos for Advent

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This one is super.  And so timely. Erasmus at his scathing best contra the stupidity of conflicts and wars.