Daily Archives: 6 Nov 2017

IOTS Meeting Announcement


This is How Far Jeffress and His Ilk Are Willing to Go to Defend Mass Murder

Robert Jeffress is, it has to be said, one of the most evil pseudo-Christians presently wearing sheep’s clothing.

And Now the Most Disgusting News From the Texas Shooter of All

He evidently, according to reports, was at odds with his mother in law and went to the church, shooting everyone inside and killing more than half, just to kill her.  And she wasn’t even there…

This country is sick.  It’s sickness is unto death.

Today With Zwingli: Good People, Don’t Fall For Eck’s Deceptions

On 6 November, 1524 Zwingli published Antwort an den Rat in Zürich über Johannes Ecks Schrift und betreffend den Anschlag der neun Orte in Frauenfeld. Its thesis is simple- Johannes Eck is a deceiver and what he says in his silly book about Reform is foolhardy falsehood.

Zum andren, so Egg – er habe das uß eigner bewegnus beredt oder versoldet anghebt, welchs nit allein Christen, sonder alle wysen wol und offenlich mögend erkennen – überein hatt wellen mit mir disputieren, hab ich imm christenlich erbott zuogeschriben, und one alles leichen, ableinen oder schühen geoffnet, mit was form ich sölchs mit imm an die hand nemen well, und darinn offenlich ußgetruckt, ob er unsere Eydgnoßen darby welle haben, sye mins gevallen, und den platz genennet: Zürich, da ich gelert hab, da sölle ich ouch bericht werden, ob ich unrecht gelert hab, damit die verfuerten, wo imm also wär, widrumb gebessret wurdind. Ja, so die bede stuck so offenlich beschehen sind, vormal gewert und ietz darwider gestritten, und nütz des minder für und für zuo Abentzel und Basel gewert wirdt, und ich mich mit so glychen waffen dem Eggen ze Zürich uff den plan gestellet hab, so verhoff ich, eim yeden vernüfftigen – ich geschwig gotzförchtigen – sye häll und offenbar, was Egg, oder die inn uffrüstend, für sich genommen habind.

Eck… Don’t believe him, he just makes stuff up!

Quote of the Day

Das Neue Testament enthält die einzigen zuverlässigen Überlieferungen über das Auftreten Jesu wie über das grundlegende Werden der Kirche und ihrer Verkündigung. — Leonhard Goppelt

This Is The Stupidest Man In The Theological World

God was ‘answering prayers’ of Texas victims by letting them get shot. So Hans Fiene, Lutheran pastor and probably best known for his Lutheran Satire videos and essays on ‘The Federalist’.

No greater ignorance has ever been expressed by anyone pretending to be a theologian. Fiene has jumped the shark, and been consumed by it. Asinine… that gets close to what his comments are.

Hans Fiene, a Lutheran pastor who is also a regular contributor to the right-wing website The Federalist, has written a new column in which he explains that allowing 26 people to die at the hands of a crazed gunman at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, this weekend was actually God’s way of answering their prayers.

Fiene begins his column by attacking liberals who have mocked Republican politicians who only offer “thoughts and prayers” for shooting victims — and who don’t take any direct action that could prevent future shootings.

He then explains to liberals that it was part of God’s plan that over two dozen people would get shot up while in their own house of worship.

“It may seem, on the surface, that God was refusing to give such protection to his Texan children,” he writes. “But we are also praying that God would deliver us from evil eternally. Through these same words, we are asking God to deliver us out of this evil world and into his heavenly glory, where no violence, persecution, cruelty, or hatred will ever afflict us again.”

Fiene then says that, in order to fully defeat evil eternally, God has to let evil get some temporary victories, such as this weekend’s mass shooting.

“So when a madman with a rifle sought to persecute the faithful at First Baptist Church on Sunday morning, he failed,” Fiene says. “Just like those who put Christ to death, and just like those who have brought violence to believers in every generation, this man only succeeded in being the means through which God delivered his children from this evil world into an eternity of righteousness and peace.”

Incomprehensibly inaccurate.  The little phrase ‘Deliver us from evil’, in the Lord’s Prayer, proves Fiene wrong utterly and thoroughly.  What ignorance he displays.  What demonic ignorance.

If You’re Not Willing to Act, Shut Up

According to sources close to local 32-year-old John Rettner, the man recently stated that “praying doesn’t help anything,” while his own idea of helping is just trolling under activist hashtags on Facebook and Twitter.

After every nation tragedy and disaster, the man can be seen making fun of those offering “thoughts and prayers” while the only thing he himself has ever contributed to help those in need is his Facebook posts, sources confirmed.

“All your guys’ thoughts and prayers don’t do anything,” he wrote in a lengthy rant online. “Unlike you religious plebs, I’m committed to help out my fellow man by calling people names on social media.”

The man’s generous aid package for those hurt in recent tragedies has included “savage” memes mocking those who offer to pray for the victims, brutal comebacks on religious family members’ posts, and utilizing popular hashtags to self-righteously promote his positions on social issues.

“We can’t just sit around offering thoughts and prayers. We have to take action by attacking people online,” he said later.

Their name is Legion; the talkers but not doers.  Do something.  Contact your reps and DEMAND action.

Solving The Gun Crisis Whilst Maintaining the Freedom of People to Own Guns

  • All guns must be licensed just like cars.
  • All gun owners must be insured, just like drivers.  If you own a gun, you carry insurance to protect anyone injured by it.
  • Guns may not be sold to anyone with a record.
  • Guns may not be sold to persons under psychiatric care.
  • Semi-Automatic weapons should be banned.  They serve no purpose but mass murder.
  • Gun shows should be shut down and private gun sales made illegal.  When charged and convicted, any gun owner who sells privately forfeits all weapons and may not purchase any again, for life.
  • Make the national gun registry a real thing instead of a joke like it presently is.

NO sensible person can argue convincingly or intelligently against ANY of these points.  Congress and the White House alone are afraid to do the right thing.

Places Of the Reformation: Münster and Köln

Enjoy this little video.

Today With Zwingli: The Second Disputation with the Re-Baptizers

November 6, 1525 was the date of the conference. The Anabaptists assembled in great numbers from all the villages of the canton, and their cause was defended by Grebel, Manz, and Blaurock. The debate lasted three days and was confined principally to the doctrine of baptism. Once more the victory remained with Zwingli, and this time it was more decided than before. When the disputation was ended the Council published in substance the following decree:

“The Anabaptists and their followers having for three successive days disputed in the Town Hall, in our presence and in the presence of the whole community, and each and every Baptist without any hindrance having spoken his quarrel, dispute, and opinion, it hath from first to last appeared that Master Ulrich Zwingli, with his followers, has completely overcome the Anabaptists, demonstrated the invalidity of Anabaptism, and on the other hand established the validity of infant baptism. Therefore we hereby command and enjoin all persons, man or woman, young man or maiden, to abstain from such Anabaptism, and we authorize infants only to be baptized.”

The three Anabaptist leaders were called upon to publicly confess their errors. This they persistently refused to do, and the Council ordered them to be placed in prison. All this time Zwingli was laboring diligently in his sermons and writings for the extinction of the Anabaptist errors, persuaded that in this course only lay the hope of final success. Gradually the turbulent and insurrectionary spirit ceased. The public disputations had served to expose the error, and the Anabaptists and their cause became more and more unpopular.

The credit of suppressing the uprising is due almost wholly to Zwingli’s untiring efforts. When the movement had been so thoroughly quelled that it no longer attracted public attention, the leaders were released on Zwingli’s petition, with the admonition to watch their ways more carefully in the future. It was not long, however, before they began once more to hold meetings and incite the people. Manz and Blaurock were again imprisoned, and Grebel would have suffered a like fate had he not fled.- Samuel Simpson’s bio of Z.

Luther’s Thoughts on Personal Libraries

luther 99Isn’t it a crying shame that heretofore a boy was obliged to study for twenty years or even longer merely to learn enough bad Latin to become a priest and mumble through the mass? Whoever got that far was accounted blessed, and blessed was the mother who bore such a child! And yet he remained all his life a poor ignoramus, unable either to cackle or to lay an egg.

Everywhere we were obliged to put up with teachers and masters who knew nothing themselves, and were incapable of teaching anything good or worthwhile. In fact, they did not even know how to study or teach. Where does the fault lie? There were no other books available than the stupid books of the monks and the sophists. What else could come out of them but pupils and teachers as stupid as the books they used?

A jackdaw hatches no doves, and a fool cannot produce a sage. That is the reward of our ingratitude, that men failed to found libraries but let the good books perish and kept the poor ones.

My advice is not to heap together all manner of books indiscriminately and think only of the number and size of the collection. I would make a judicious selection, for it is not necessary to have all the commentaries of the jurists, all the sentences of the theologians, all the quaestiones of the philosophers, and all the sermons of the monks. Indeed, I would discard all such dung, and furnish my library with the right sort of books, consulting with scholars as to my choice.

First of all, there would be the Holy Scriptures, in Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and German, and any other language in which they might be found.

Next, the best commentaries, and, if I could find them, the most ancient, in Greek, Hebrew, and Latin.

Then, books that would be helpful in learning the languages, such as the poets and orators, regardless of whether they were pagan or Christian, Greek or Latin, for it is from such books that one must learn grammar.

After that would come books on the liberal arts, and all the other arts.

Finally, there would be books of law and medicine; here too there should be careful choice among commentaries.*

If I might offer a condensed version: fill your library with reference books that you will use more than once. If you are only going to read something once, don’t buy it, borrow it. Buy the most useful commentaries and the language tools which you will find valuable over the course of your life’s work. As Luther remarks, if you study junk, you’ll teach junk. If you study quality, you’ll teach quality.  And you can only do that if you have a decent library.

*The Christian in Society II, (Vol. 45, pp. 375–377).

‘Prayer Changes Everything’… Um, No, It Doesn’t

People, even well meaning preachers and theologians, will sometimes repeat phrases that sound good but when thought over aren’t all that good, or true, after all.

For example, people say, quite regularly- ‘prayer changes everything’, or in a variant form, ‘prayer changes things’.  Unfortunately, that simply isn’t true.

God changes things, prayer, as a human act, as an act of approach to God, and petition to God, can only REQUEST change.  It itself CHANGES nothing.

Furthermore, you’d be hard pressed to find any passage at all in the Bible which suggests that prayer changes anything.  The closest you’ll come is a passage like Ex 32:11-14 (where Moses prays for Israel and God changes his mind and doesn’t wipe them out).  Even there, though, it is God who changes his mind.  Moses doesn’t change it- or the impending disaster.

God is sovereign.  He changes whensoever he wishes whysoever he wishes and then He himself changes what he wills.  Prayer isn’t a magic talisman that can be waved and things changed thereby.

When someone tells you ‘prayer changes things’ gently correct them by reminding them that it is God who holds power, not a human act.  And if that doesn’t work, remind them that Jesus taught us to pray ‘your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven’.

The Word You Wanted Was ‘Deaf’…

Can we get some editors, there, publishers…

Via the twitter.

Leonard Goppelt’s Birthday

On the 6th of November, 1911, New Testament exegete and Theologian Leonhard Goppelt was born.  His contributions to New Testament studies are impressive and cover everything from the use of the Old Testament by the New to commentary to New Testament theology.  He was an exceptionally learned man.

The good news is that he is finally – though belatedly – coming to the public’s attention.  A fine biography was published a few years back and 2 years ago a conference was held which discussed his work.  And then, a Festschrift!

I’ve posted various bits and pieces on Goppelt over time and those posts are available here.  I hope you’ll spend some time today reading a bit of Goppelt.  My first encounter with him was through his amazing Typos: The Typological Interpretation of the Old Testament in the New.  That book…  wow.  A real eye opener.

At any rate- Happy Goppelt Day!

Quote of the Day

It were ten thousand times better to trample a flatterer under a man’s feet, than for a man to suffer his feet to be taken in the flatterer’s net. A flatterer is a sore enemy in the habit of a friend, he is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, he is a devil transformed into an angel of light; and what punishment can be too great for such? — Thomas Brooks

Read October’s Issue of ‘Theology Today’ For Free

Here.  Although I don’t know how long it will be available, so get essays while you can.