Daily Archives: 23 Jan 2017

Thanks, Trump: China Filling the Void Created By America’s Indifference

Chinese President Calls for East Jerusalem as Capital of Palestinian State. Xi Jinping addresses Arab League in Cairo before planned visit to Iran, announces millions in aid to Palestinians.

Make no mistake- the expansion of China is a direct result of the election of Trump and the rise of Nationalism as the disembowlment of international relations.  China will eclipse the US within the decade to become the world’s leading superpower, thanks to Donald Trump.

Thanks, Trump.

Netherlands Wants to be Second….

This is fantastic.  Thanks to Hywell Clifford for the heads up.

Get a Free e-Book From Brill This Week

It’s Academic Book Week!

As a gift to all interested in Academic Publishing, Brill has opened up some of its related content for free. For a list of all the eBooks that are freely available, go to www.brill.com/AcBookWeek2017

Only during Academic Book Week, from Monday 23 – Saturday 28 January 2017. Enjoy!

Some of the titles are relevant to biblical scholars and church historians.

Studies in the Making of the Early Hebrew Book

Augustine beyond the BookIntermediality, Transmediality and Reception

The Kabbalistic Scholar of the Antwerp Polyglot Bible

Early Christian ManuscriptsExamples of Applied Method and Approach


That One Time Luther Tried to Copy Melanchthon’s Work…


While You’re Celebrating Luther, Remember, He Wasn’t Always Right

For example, he is perfectly wrong in every way when he writes

The Jews are our open enemies; they do not cease to blaspheme our Lord Christ; they call the Virgin Mary a whore and Christ, the child of a whore. Us they call changelings and abortions, and if they could kill us all, they would gladly do so. And they often do, especially those claiming to be doctors, even if they do help on occasion, for it is the devil who lends his help and seal. They are also practitioners of the medicine used in Italy, where poison is administered to kill someone in an hour, a month, a year, even ten or twenty years. This is the art they have mastered.

Therefore, do not be troubled for them, for they do nothing else among you than to blaspheme our dear Lord Jesus Christ abominably and to seek after our body, life, honor, and property. Yet we want to exercise Christian love toward them and pray for them to convert and receive the Lord, whom they should properly honor more than we do. If anyone refuses to do this, let there be no doubt that he is an incorrigible Jew who will not cease to blaspheme Christ, to suck you dry, and (if he can) to kill you. — Martin Luther

Luther has his good points.  But he also has his bad points and those bad points are worse than anyone can imagine.

A New Online Exhibit of Luther’s Early Works

luther_emdenZum 500. Reformationsjubiläum zeigt die Berliner Staatsbibliothek selten zu sehende Dokumente aus der Zeit Martin Luthers. Unter dem Motto “Bibel-Thesen-Propaganda” werde ab 3. Februar die Reformation in 95 Objekten erzählt, darunter einmalig auch alle drei noch existierende Thesendrucke des Jahres 1517, teilte die Staatsbibliothek mit. Die Veröffentlichung von 95 Thesen durch Luther am 31. Oktober 1517 gilt als Ausgangspunkt der Reformation, der kirchlichen Erneuerungsbewegung in Deutschland und Europa.

Zu sehen sind auch das “Achtliederbuch” und weitere frühe Gesangbuchdrucke der Reformationszeit. Das “Achtliederbuch” wurde bereits um die Jahreswende 1523/1524 von einem Nürnberger Drucker publiziert und kann laut Staatsbibliothek gewissermaßen als Vorläufer aller evangelischen Gesangbücher gelten. Das kleine Büchlein mit dem umfänglichen Titel “Etlich Cristlich lider Lobgesang und Psalm dem rainen wort Gottes gemeß auß der heyligen schrifft durch mancherley hochgelerter gemacht in der Kirchen zu singen wie es dann zum tayl berayt zu Wittenberg in uebung ist” enthält unter anderem vier Lieder von Martin Luther.

Seine 95 Thesen sandte Luther den Angaben zufolge unter anderem dem Mainzer Erzbischof Albrecht von Brandenburg. Zugleich kursierten in Luthers Umfeld einige Abschriften. Heute sind laut Staatsbibliothek nur noch sieben Exemplare der Thesendrucke aus Nürnberg und Leipzig bekannt. Zwei davon werden in Berlin aufbewahrt: die Staatsbibliothek besitzt einen Druck aus Nürnberg, das Geheime Staatsarchiv einen aus Leipzig.

Weitere Exponate der Ausstellung sind ein Druck von Luthers “Sermon von dem Ablass und Gnade” von 1518, der die Reformationsbewegung wesentlich mit auslöste, sowie die päpstlichen Bulle, mit der Papst Leo X. im Jahr 1520 Luther den Bann androhte.


The Bee Stings the ‘Blame Obama’ Branch of the GOP

Stating they were “actually kinda disappointed” that Barack Obama’s second term as President of the United States is coming to an end, Americans nationwide reported Friday morning that they are planning on blaming Obama for absolutely everything they can for the rapidly diminishing number of minutes that he is still President. “Thanks, Obama,” a woman in Los Angeles reportedly muttered as she sat in horrible traffic on the 405 freeway. “Man, it’s gonna be really weird not being able to blame him for this anymore.”

Other citizens of the United States agreed, stating they were going to make sure to ramp up their incessant blaming of every minute problem in their lives on the President as much as possible before noon. “I tried saying ‘Thanks, Trump,’ after stubbing my toe the other day,” a factory worker in Idaho told reporters. “It just didn’t have the same ring to it.”

“I blame Obama for that, too,” he said, shaking his head and continuing to project his anger and fears on the President for everything going wrong in his life. The nation is reportedly undecided if it will begin to take ownership of its own problems, or if it will slowly transition to blaming President Donald Trump for everything once he is sworn in.

All humor aside, everything that happens now can be laid at the feet of the GOP, since it holds the House, the Senate, and the White House.  The GOP will be held accountable for everything.  Everything.

Some Demented Soul Devised This Madness…

Someone utterly bereft of theological sense.

When Stricken by the Plague, As Zwingli Was…

Here’s how to respond in prayer:

I. At the Beginning of the Illness

Help, Lord God, help
In this trouble!
I think, Death is at the door.
Stand before? me, Christ;
For Thou hast overcome him!
To Thee I cry:
If it is Thy will,
Take out the dart,
Which wounds me!
Nor lets me have an hour’s
Rest or repose!
Will’st Thou however
That Death take me
In the midst of my days,
So let it be!
Do what Thou wilt;
Me nothing lacks.
Thy vessel am I;
To make or break altogether.
For, if Thou takest away
My spirit
From this earth,
Thou dost it, that it? may not grow worse,
Nor spot
The pious lives and ways of others.

II. In the Midst of his Illness

Console me, Lord God, console me!
The illness increases,
Pain and fear seize
My soul and body.
Come to me then,
With Thy grace, O my only consolation!
It? will surely save
Everyone, who
His heart’s desire
And hope sets
On Thee, and who besides
Despises all gain and loss.
Now all is up.
My tongue is dumb,
It cannot speak a word.
My senses are all blighted.
Therefore is it time
That Thou my fight
Conductest hereafter;
Since I am not
So strong, that I
Can bravely
Make resistance
To the Devil’s wiles and treacherous hand.
Still will my spirit
Constantly abide by Thee, however he rages.

III. During Convalescence

Sound, Lord God, sound!
I think, I am
Perhaps with greater anguish,
Already coming back.
Than would now have
Yes, if it please Thee,
That no spark of sin
Since I came
Rule me longer on earth,
Then my lips must
Thy praise and teaching
The spite and boasting
Bespeak more
Of this world
Than ever before,
However it may go,
In simplicity and with no danger.
Although I must
The punishment of death
Sometime endure
Perhaps with greater anguish,
Than would now have
Happened, Lord!
Since I came
So near?;
So will I still
The spite and boasting
Of this world
Bear joyfully for the sake of the reward.
By Thy help,
Without which nothing can be perfect.

A Gift for Joel Watts on his Birthday: Knowledge

table.jpgPeter Opitz uploaded his outstanding essay on the topic of the Lord’s Supper to Academia.edu a couple of years ago. His conclusion needs to be memorized by the anti-Zwinglians amongst us (i.e., Watts)-

A real living experience of God’s salvation cannot be produced by men, neither by bishops nor by Reformed church leaders. But it can be expected, where it is promised. The aim of Zwingli’s liturgy of the Lord’s Supper was exactly this. And the table was the point where the vertical, spiritual dimension, and the horizontal, human dimension, could meet. The reproach of “spiritualizing” the Lord’s Supper may be correct in some cases, but certainly not in the case of Huldrych Zwingli.

Indeed. Indeed.  And you’re welcome, Joel.

Signs of the Times

Now This Looks Good

Take a look- 

Snapshots of Evolving Traditions: Jewish and Christian Manuscript Culture, Textual Fluidity, and New Philology, Ed. by Lied, Liv Ingeborg / Lundhaug, Hugo

Speaking of Trump’s Children…

Whatever your feelings about Trump, you may never, ever, ever talk about his young son in a disparaging way.  The children of political adversaries are never fair game.  And, to be honest, when you attack kids, I find you beneath contempt.

Signs of the Times

Via Matthew Coomber- the best protest sign, ever.