Daily Archives: 6 Nov 2018

The Price of Peace, the Cost of War

Anyone who will not give a guilder for peace must eventually give ten or twenty guilders for war.  — Martin Luther

Comments Off on The Price of Peace, the Cost of War

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Theology


Judah Smith (Whatever That Is) Has No Idea What a Church Is

Sorry sparky, but that’s not a church.

Comments Off on Judah Smith (Whatever That Is) Has No Idea What a Church Is

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Modern Culture


Nadia Bolz-Weber Is Just a Disgusting Publicity Seeker

If she actually represented Christianity I would have nothing to do with it. But she doesn’t. She represents Baalism.

She is vile and vulgar and there’s nothing Christian about her. Nothing. Need proof? Here she is, speaking for herself (and be warned, her vulgar language knows no limits):

My book comes out in January, Shameless: the Sexual Reformation, calling out harm that’s been done to people as a result of what the church has taught them about sex, body, and gender. You can draw a straight fucking line from what people were told in church and the harm in their lives. The book explores that. I’m also instigating an art project where women mail me their purity rings. They’ll be melted into a sculpture of a vagina.

Baalism. If you attend her cult, get out if you’re a Christian (though frankly it’s hard to imagine that you are or you would have driven this pagan out long ago).

Comments Off on Nadia Bolz-Weber Is Just a Disgusting Publicity Seeker

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Modern Culture


Evil Instruments of God

[So] while by means of the wicked God performs what he had secretly decreed, they are not excusable as if they were obeying his precept, which of set purpose they violate according to their lust. — John Calvin

Comments Off on Evil Instruments of God

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Modern Culture


Behold, the Emergent Theology of the Pseudo-Christian

Comments Off on Behold, the Emergent Theology of the Pseudo-Christian

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in pseudo-christianity, pseudo-theology


Lukas Bormann’s New Testament Theology

V&R have it

Lukas Bormann arbeitet in Auseinandersetzung mit herausragenden Beiträgen der internationalen Forschung die Grundlinien der Theologie des Neuen Testaments heraus. 

Die Theologie des Neuen Testaments hat die Aufgabe, die Gedanken, Begriffe und überzeugungen, die in den neutestamentlichen Schriften ausgedrückt werden, in ihrem sachlichen und historischen Zusammenhang darzustellen. Im 21. Jahrhundert hat ein solches Vorhaben eine Vielfalt von Fragestellungen und Forschungsperspektiven zu berücksichtigen. Der Gegenstand einer Theologie des Neuen Testaments kann nicht mehr allein als die systematische Verhältnisbestimmung von Gott, Welt und Mensch definiert werden. Bormann berücksichtigt in seiner Darstellung daher vielfältige Impulse zum religiösen Symbolsystem des frühen Christentums.

The table of contents won’t be repeated here because it is available in full at the ‘leseprobe’ tab at the link above.  There readers will also discover various other materials from the book’s opening and you are encouraged to look there before continuing below.

The author follows a sensible procedure when he decides to adopt a chronologically sensitive outline for his volume.  That is to say, he describes the various theologies contained within the New Testament in the order in which they appeared in the history of the early church.  Thus, Paul comes before the Synoptics and the Synoptics come before the deutero-Paulines and the deutero-Paulines come before Revelation.

Not only is the author’s methodological inclination sensible, his prose is precise and thorough at the same time.  For instance of Paul he notes:

Die Verkündigung Jesu von Nazareth war an die Welt des jüdischen Dorfes gerichtet, Paulus von Tarsus aber brachte das Evangelium in die hellenistisch-römische Stadt (p. 118).

Like Bultmann, Bormann rightly sees the preaching of Jesus as the presupposition for the later preaching of the Church and thus integral to the development of the theology of the Christian community.

Bormann also recognizes the ‘reception history’ of the theology of Paul (and the other New Testament writers.  Observing, for example, that

Die paulinische Theologie gilt der Exegese in reformatorischer Tradition als die Theologie des Neuen Testaments schlechthin. Kein anderer neutestamentlicher Autor stellt so differenziert und reflektiert, aber auch spannungsvoll und polemisch dar, in welcher Beziehung Gott, Welt und Mensch zueinander stehen (p. 118).

The importance of Paul as probably the most important of the New Testament’s authors is also recognized by Bormann.  This can be demonstrated by the following example:

Die Theologie des Paulus bringt die Überzeugung der ersten Christen angesichts der römischen Herrschaftspropaganda, der hellenistischen Popularphilosophie und der pharisäischen Auffassung vom Judentum zum Ausdruck: Der gekreuzigte Jesus von Nazareth ist der von Gott aus den Toten auferweckte Sohn Gottes. Paulus verkündigt diese Botschaft als Evangelium für die nichtjüdischen Völker und hält dabei daran fest, dass genau dieses Evangelium von der Schrift aus Gesetz und Propheten angekündigt ist und dem Schöpferwillen des Gottes Israels entspricht (p. 121).

Bormann’s discussion of the Synoptics includes explanations of imagery used throughout the history of the Church.  So, for instance, whilst describing the Gospel of Mark he notes

Die Alte Kirche hat den vier Evangelisten in Anlehnung an die viergesichtigen Cheruben des Thronwagens Gottes im Ezechielbuch (Ez 1,10; 10,14) und an die Himmelsgestalten der Thronvision der Johannesoffenbarung (Apk 4,7) als Erkennungszeichen Löwe, Stier, Mensch und Adler zugeordnet (p. 230).

To his credit, Bormann treats materials together which belong together.  So not only does he talk about Paul’s letters in chronological sequence, he also discusses Luke / Acts  together, and I for one am glad that he does.  Too many treat Luke with the Synoptics without ever really taking seriously the Acts of the Apostles, yet these two works clearly belong together.

Lukasevangelium und Apostelgeschichte (p. 293).

Also worth noting is the fact that Bormann also takes seriously the Catholic Epistles and the letter to the Hebrews.  These materials, often, if we are honest with ourselves, tend to receive short schrift in both textbooks and courses on New Testament introduction and theology.  Bormann corrects that error by treating these materials both fairly and fully.

Of Hebrews he remarks

Da Theologie immer auch an eine Kommunikationssituation gebunden ist, in der sich das theologizing/Theologie treiben entfaltet, ist mit der Vielfalt der Adressaten auch darauf hingewiesen, dass sich die Aussagen dieser Schriften nicht zu einer einzigen Theologie der katholischen Briefe zusammenfassen lassen (p. 361).


Über den Verfasser ist nichts bekannt (p. 362).

Accuracy and sensibility are the chief pillars of this work.  It is certainly worth a read and more than that it is worth adoption as a course textbook.  Upper level students in American graduate programs in Biblical studies and theology ought to be assigned the volume for two reasons:  it’s very good and its German is fairly simple and understandable.  Students are thus not only provided with a first rate theological work, they are also enabled to further their study of German as a scholarly source for theological work.

And it should be assigned for upper level theological courses in German speaking lands.  For what are to me obvious reasons:

  • students will be able to increase their basic theological knowledge and improve their theological comprehension.
  • students will be equipped by means of the very up to date bibliographic entries to further their study of areas of personal interest.

Following the body of the volume the usual indices provide readers with quick access to sections of the book concerning which they may have specific questions.

This is a tremendously useful volume.  I recommend it without hesitation.

Comments Off on Lukas Bormann’s New Testament Theology

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Bible, Biblical Studies Resources, Book Review


Churches Are Not Businesses

Dear Facebook- a Church (worthy of the name) is not a business. It does not have customers. And any Church that views its members as customers or any Pastor who views the membership as a consumer base should close down right now. #kthanksbye

Comments Off on Churches Are Not Businesses

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Theology


They Aren’t ‘Bible Scholars’ so Please Don’t Refer to Them As Such

They are dilettantes of the most dilettantish sort.  That’s what they should be called.  So I will.  And here’s their award, and yours, Mr Butters, for calling them scholars in the first place.

‘Congrats’.  I haven’t given out a Dilly in a while- but you certainly deserve it Mr Butters and company.

Comments Off on They Aren’t ‘Bible Scholars’ so Please Don’t Refer to Them As Such

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Dilettante, Dilly the Dilettante Award, Heresy and Heretics, Pentebabbleism, Pentebabbleists


More Evidence that ‘Evangelicals’ Are Anything But Christians

The Family Federation for a Heavenly USA (aka the Unification Church) has added worship artist Israel Houghton to the lineup of high profile Christians who will help evangelize New Yorkers for self-described True Mother and the only begotten daughter of God, Hak Ja Han Moon.

Let me simplify- Evangelicals are supporting the Moonies who are teaching that Jesus was a failure and that the Daughter of God, Ms Moon, is the true path of salvation.

These Evangelicals are not Christians. Period. Full stop.

Houghton joins Hezekiah Walker, Yolanda Adams and Bishop Noel Jones as self-proclaimed Christian performers/speakers at an event which Moon’s followers hope will help establish her as a mainstream religious figure. She and her followers claim that Jesus failed in his mission by being crucified. In the modern era, her husband was the fulfillment of the Messianic promises and she is the daughter of God and only through she and her husband — True Parents — is their hope for reunion with God.

They are not Christians, these Evangelicals.

Comments Off on More Evidence that ‘Evangelicals’ Are Anything But Christians

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Heresy and Heretics, Pentebabbleism, Pentebabbleists


Conference Announcement

Die Zürcher Reformation und ihre Rolle in den europäischen Reformationsbewegungen
Internationale Tagung an der Theologischen Fakultät
6. bis 8. Februar 2019

Im Januar 2019 jährt sich der Beginn der Zürcher Reformation und damit der Beginn des weltweiten reformierten Protestantismus als Konfessionskultur und als kulturprägende Kraft zum 500. Mal. Es ist ein einzigartiges Ereignis, das einen „Jahrhundertgeburtstag“ feiert: Nie zuvor und nie danach nahm eine in Zürich ihren Anfang nehmende Bewegung einen derart tiefen Einfluss auf weite Teile Europas.

So bildet der Jahresbeginn 2019 einen einmaligen Anlass, in einem Kongress den gegenwärtigen internationalen, wissenschaftlichen For-schungsstand zur Zürcher Reformation zu bündeln, zu dokumentieren und der Forschung neue Impulse zu verleihen. Dabei soll die Zürcher Reformation nicht isoliert betrachtet, sondern ihre Rolle im Rahmen der europäischen Reformationsbewegungen ins Zentrum gestellt werden. Historische, wirkungsgeschichtliche und theologische Aspekte gilt es zu berücksichtigen.

The full program and further details are available here.

Comments Off on Conference Announcement

Posted by on 6 Nov 2018 in Conferences