Daily Archives: 20 Feb 2018

Franklin Graham’s Niece Eviscerates Him

She’s 100% right.

Sometimes People Ask ‘What’s It Like Being a Pastor?’

It’s.  Like.  This.

Good Grief

So I just simply tweeted that I was going to write tomorrow and lo and behold some bot jumps in and offers to write for me… good grief.

The Public Wants It

Via twitter-

@LarrySabato — NEW Q POLL: Support for GUN CONTROL at all-time high, 66-31%. Support for UNIVERSAL BACKGROUND CHECKS: 97-2% (as unanimous as you ever see in a poll). BAN ON SALE OF ASSAULT WEAPONS: 67-29%.

The public wants it. It’s time for the politicians to deliver it.

Two New Volumes in the Refo500 Academic Series

»The Controversy over the Lord’s Supper in Danzig 1561-1567«: The variety in the controversies of the Lord’s Supper is being shown under a new single spotlight. Bjørn Ole Hovda analyzes the inner-Lutheran controversy on the Eucharist during the late Reformation in Danzig 1561-1567, both in its theological as well as its wider societal and political context. (Please find index and introduction here.)

»Semper Reformanda«:  Varying insights on the personal and objective dimensions of Reformed worship – Eight case studies examine Reformed worship through the ages and across cultures; together they highlight the material, sensory, emotional, experiental, vibrant, and negotiated dimensions of Reformed religious culture. (Please find index and introduction here.)

Take a look.

The Core of the Gun Problem

As we learn in the Heidelberg Catechism-

Q. What does God’s law require of us?

A. Christ teaches us this in summary in Matthew 22:37-40:

“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’This is the greatest and first commandment. “And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’“On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

1 Deut. 6:5
2 Lev. 19:18

Q. Can you live up to all this perfectly?

A. No.1

I have a natural tendency to hate God and my neighbor.2

1 Rom. 3:9-20, 231 John 1:8, 10
2 Gen. 6:5Jer. 17:9Rom. 7:23-248:7Eph. 2:1-3Titus 3:3

Golb’s Case Doesn’t Interest the Supreme Court

Sorry Raphael, the US Supreme Court isn’t interested in your case.

Supreme Court won’t take up the case of a blogger convicted of criminally impersonating his father’s academic rivals on the subject of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Read the rest at the link above.

A Letter to Every Elected Official From a Furious Teacher

Dear every elected official,

Nowhere in my contract does it state that if the need arises, I have to shield students from gunfire with my own body. If it did, I wouldn’t have signed it. I love my job. I love my students. I am also a mother with 2 amazing daughters. I am a wife of a wonderful man. I have a dog that I adore. I don’t want to die defending other people’s children; I want to teach kindness and responsibility…and Art History. That’s what I am supposed to do each day. Blocking bullets? I am not supposed to do that. I imagine that if someone was trying to kill my students, that I would try to save them with all my being. I probably would jump on top of a child to save her life. And yes, I might be one of those heroic teachers that the media writes tributes to after their death. But I am furious that I would have to make this sacrifice. I am incensed that my own children would lose their mother because I chose to be a teacher.

I chose to be a teacher knowing that on most days I would not be able to use the bathroom until 4 pm. I chose teaching knowing that I would be grading papers all weekend and working far beyond the hours of my contract. I chose to teach even though it meant that I would miss every awards assembly and field trip that my daughters asked me to attend. I even signed up to sit in a counselor’s office with a teenager on my lap, holding her as she sobbed through an anxiety attack. I signed up to ask a child if they were considering committing suicide and then relaying this terrifying information to a parent. It seems like a lot to agree to, but truly I knew what I was getting into.

I did not sign up to be ripped apart by a spray of bullets that came from a semi-automatic rifle. At the end of my teaching contract, it says that I will perform “other duties to be assigned”. I do not interpret these words “as bleeding to death on the floor of my classroom”. The anger that courses through my body after a school shooting in this country is accompanied by pure panic. I am terrified of my own children dying in school, first and foremost, but I am also terrified that the responsibility that sits on my shoulders as a teacher is far greater than I can rationally accept. On Back to School Night, I look out at the gazes of the parents in front of me as we silently make a pact. “I am giving you the most precious part of me with the knowledge that you will shield my child’s body with your own when the need arises.” They say this with their eyes. I agree to this responsibility and make a silent unbreakable oath before them. As I am telling them about the 20,000 years of global art history that I will be teaching their child, I am also agreeing to die. When I am in the parent’s place at my daughter’s school, I am asking the same of her teacher. This teacher may end up being the only thing blocking a bullet aimed for my daughter’s head.

I am furious. How dare you force me to choose between my own children and those that I teach. How dare you allow powerful adults who love guns to be more important than a generation of children growing up in fear. I don’t want to spend mornings memorizing my children’s clothing so I can identify them later. I don’t want to spend professional development hours learning how to save a few more lives by setting up barricades. Sometimes when a kid is driving me crazy in class I think to myself: “Would I die for you? Would I lose everything to save you from harm?” I have my moments when I shake my head NO.

Instead of making dead teachers into saints, make them safer when they are still alive. Make it possible for schools to have smaller class sizes so that we can get to know our students and look out for the ones who need help. Hire more counselors and school nurses and social workers and psychologists so that many people are caring for each child. HELP us prevent this. Take away guns from people who will murder us. Stop taking money from the NRA and proving how soulless you are. Keep us safe so I can do my job. How dare you put me into constant danger so that you can be reelected. How dare you make me choose between saving children or making my own children motherless. How dare you make me into a hero when I just want to teach.


If You Advertise on Fox News, Prepare to Be Destroyed

Because though the people who watch Fox News might put up with this, the rest of us won’t.  And to show you how much we won’t, prepare to lose more money than you can imagine.

In response to a Fox News tweet about students in Parkland, Florida rallying to demand change to gun laws in the United States, many pro-gun Fox fans lashed out at the students and said they didn’t know what they were talking about when it comes to guns, despite the fact that a gunman last week murdered 17 of their classmates with an AR-15-style rifle.

One of the most common themes among the Fox fans was that the students were being paid by a shadowy left-wing donor to speak out, while other commenters accused the students of swallowing too many Tide Pods.

Here are Fox News sponsors.  Let them know the Parkland kids being attacked by Fox has resulted in those sponsors losing your business.

The International Barth Conference 2018 Call for Papers

Is posted here.

Those currently enrolled in a doctoral program or with completed doctorates are invited to submit paper proposals for the parallel sessions of the conference. We invite papers which set Karl Barth’s life, theology, and politics into constructive conversation with theologies and theories including but not limited to: liberation, black, disability, post-colonial, womanist, feminist, queer, political, comparative, dogmatic, historical, and contextual. We especially encourage women, Africans, people of color, international students, new voices, and other under represented voices in the Barth discussion to submit proposals. Abstracts not exceeding 300 words should be sent to barth.center@ptsem.edu no later than April 15, 2018. Paper presentations should be no more than 3,500 words in order to be delivered in 30 minutes and allow 15-20 minutes for Q&A. Please include your current academic standing with submissions and put “International Barth Conference” in the subject line of your email submission.

Annoy Calvin, Go To Prison

calvin_chairAn interesting tidbit from Calvin’s life is related by his lovestruck biographer Stebbing, who wrote

Calvin sometimes used very strong language towards those before him [in proceedings before the consistory], calling them hypocrites, and that they returned the abuse, a conduct which he did not leave unpunished. On such occasions he would rise indignantly from his seat, command attention, and require the consistory to give the matter over to the council, that the offence might be punished as it deserved.  As soon as the consistory entertained a suspicion against any one, it referred to the council, who ordered the accused to prison.*

In case you missed it in Stebbing’s flowery prose- When folk disagreed with Calvin and spoke abusively, he would report them to the city government which would then summarily send the offender off to prison. How awesome is that.  Those were the good old days.

*The Life and Times of John Calvin, the Great Reformer (Vol. 1, p. 447).

The Zwingli Film, In Production

And here are some photos.