Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.  (June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 807; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(2)(J), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2148.)

From the website of Cornell Law School. Does it sound like anyone you know?

A Brilliant Observation by Mark Labberton in ‘The People’s Book’

9780830851638Labberton’s essay is the last in The People’s Book: The Reformation and the Bible.  The editors certainly saved the best for last.  In his wonderfully engaging essay on the perspicuity of the Bible he notes

… the priesthood of all believers did not mean the equality of all readers (p. 229).

That’s gold right there.  He continues

First, let it be said that Luther and Calvin could only imagine Bible reading occurring in the context of Christian community and not by isolated readers on their iPhones between dumbbell sets at a twenty-four hour fitness club (p. 229).

Earlier he noted

The great irony about perspicuity is that it is not perspicuous, or at least not as clear as it might sound.  The greatest evidence that perspicuity is not self-evident is provided by Calvin himself, who argued for the perspicuity of the Bible but did so while writing thousands of pages of commentary to help make plain to the ordinary reader what the Scriptures were saying and teaching.  …. Scriptures can be meaningfully described as clear but not as easy (p. 228).

What a wondrous essay in a wondrous collection of essays.  You should read this book.  And watch for my full review in Relegere sometime this Summer (which will also contain some mild rebukes of other essayists).

The Spring Semester at Ming Hua

Ming Hua is proud to offer high quality degree programmes on the study of theology by our distinguished faculty members. They come from a wide variety of background and traditions with the aim of helping students to develop a comprehensive foundation in critical thinking and a deeper knowledge of their faith, and to encourage students to actively participate in the thoughtful life of the Church.

Enroll for a degree programme today:


Beginning on 27th February, 2017

For more information, please contact Ms. Nicolle Fok
Telephone: 2536 7516



Calvin and Luther Can PDA to their Hearts’ Content. Zwinglians Are More Respectful and Respectable

Which is why in a discussion of PDA this guy doesn’t drag in blessed Zwingli’s name.  Z was way too classy for such nonsense.

When it came to marriage, Luther and Calvin were as different as fire and ice.
Luther, perhaps with a few beers under his belt, playfully addressed letters to: “my heartily beloved, gracious housewife … Katherine, Lady Luther, Lady Doctor, Lady of the Pigmarket, and whatever else she may be.” Another time he declares: “I would not trade my Katie for [all of] France or Venice.” … because God gave her to me [and] … me to her.”

Calvin on the other hand (perhaps he should have imbibed a bit more often), bloviated: “I am not one of those insane lovers who [is] … smitten with the fine figure of a woman.”

Although governed by different temperaments, both men married and in their own ways loved their wives. Luther was “crazy” about Katie and could not stop talking about her. Reminiscing over dinner (and more good German beer) some fourteen years after his marriage, Luther regaled his wide-eyed students with the story of his initial encounter with Katie. He was not attracted to Katie at first because he thought she was prideful. He was more interested in Ave von Schönfeld, another of the runaway nuns.

Fun stuff for this Val’s Day.  Enjoy.

Reading the Reformation : Luther

Something cool will  in Edinburgh:

On 14, 15 and 16 February 2017, the Cunningham Lectures at New College will mark the 500th Luther anniversary, with lectures by Professor Kaufmann covering Europe, Reformation and Luther.

New College Library holds outstanding Reformation collections that support the theme of the first lecture, Book, Print and Reformation. This includes examples of Luther’s pamphlets like the one below, from the early part of his career at the University of Wittenberg.

If you hurry you can get there in time.  I hope for those of us who can’t, they’ll record it.

Drive Through Funerals

Because now days people don’t have time to get out of their cars to show respect or compassion.

A Memphis funeral home is offering a different service from its competitors. You can drive up, say your final goodbyes to your loved ones, and you don’t even have to get out the car.  Ryan Bernard, owner of R. Bernard funeral home, says he got the idea from a funeral home in California. His main goal is to make it more convenient for families who are already dealing with losing a loved one. Bernard wants his funeral home to stand out from the rest, so his family business is offering drive-thru services.

“Say a family has a visitation from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.. We would put their loved one in the drive-thru viewing area say around 1 p.m. and they will have a drive-thru viewing from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.,” says Bernard.  The service is free for customers with funeral packages, and so far four families have tried it out.

Dreadful selfishness.