Daily Archives: 13 Feb 2019

Quote of the Year

“We may possess and may practice a dogmatics, an ethics, and a proper worldview such as the given tradition requires but still leave Lazarus lying before the door to be licked by dogs.” – Ernst Käsemann

“And so there definitely needs to be something for victims. We need counseling. We need resources.”

That sentence is the most striking, to me, from an interview this morning on NPR with a woman who says that she was victimized in a Southern Baptist Church.

Unfortunately I don’t know what she means by ‘there definitely needs to be something for victims’.  Nor what she means by ‘we need resources’.  She clearly sees those as distinguishable from counseling.

I wish the interviewer had asked her more directly ‘what do you want?’

Anyway, it’s an interesting interview, as much as for what it doesn’t say as for what it does.  I want to know the end game of the interviewee.  What is it that she thinks will make her ‘whole’.  Where does she hope to find it?  In what form does she want it to come?

I guess those are my general questions for all victims (and I’ll remind you that I too am a victim of abuse, though not in the context of the church).  What do you expect will make you whole again?  Do you imagine that the harm can be undone?  Where do you expect this undoing to come from?  In what form?

I think that for many the answer is pretty simply discerned- money.   And that’s what I want to know:  do victims think money will make it better?  How?

When Did LinkedIn Turn into a Dating Site?

No thanks, Betty.

Dog Told Him to do It…

And if you believe that…

Burnt Eggs can Summon Demons: More Pentebabbleist Nutbaggery

You can’t make this stuff up.

I woke up this morning to the sound of my daughter, November, wiggling around in her crib. I threw off the covers, rolled to my feet and walked around to the crib. An angel was floating over my daughter.

It hovered two feet above November, looking at her face to face. The angel was wearing a robe patterned with silver stars. The stars fell off its edges, pouring down over the face of the smiling infant in the crib.

I have seen angels wearing similar robes in the past, and most of the time the Holy Spirit told me that the starry robes represent an impartation of wisdom.

I picked November up and carried her downstairs to make breakfast. As I made my way down, I saw a protection angel standing next to the front door. He has been standing in the same spot ever since we moved into this house, stalwart and constant. He holds a tall spear in his right hand and wears silver-plated armor. He did not make eye contact as I walked by, but he never does. Protection angels are nothing if not intent.


What pagan tomfoolery. Read further to get to the demon bits.

MegaChurch Pastors are, To a Man, Reprobates

They are, to a man, narcissists who believe they can do as they please.  James MacDonald proves it again.

I never thought I would hear an evangelical, mega-church pastor talk about planting child pornography on the computer of an executive at a Christian publication. But today, Chicago radio personality Mancow Muller played shocking clips of someone sounding exactly like Harvest Bible Chapel Pastor James MacDonald discussing putting child porn on the computer of Christianity Today CEO Harold Smith.

Mancow told me he didn’t definitively identify MacDonald to protect himself from potential litigation. Yet MacDonald’s trademark voice, though somewhat distorted, was unmistakable. I’ve also now heard the complete 50 minutes of audio that Mancow referenced, and heard the clips in context, and they are credible. I’ve also reached out to MacDonald for comment, and he did not respond with either a confirmation or denial.

Mancow said he plans to air the entire 50-minute conversation on an upcoming podcast. I will save some of my comments about the recording until then.

But the clips Mancow played today are breathtaking. On them, the man who’s presumably MacDonald jokes about me having an affair with Mark Galli, editor-in-chief of Christianity Today (CT). That’s not funny. It’s disgusting. Galli and I have never had anything but a professional relationship, and it’s repulsive that anyone—a pastor, no less—would make a joke about that.

These guys are godless.  If you attend a megachurch, you are either wilfully blind or willingly complicit in the evil they do.  You enable it.  You FUND it!

Read the whole disgusting essay.

A Bunch of Barth

TVZ is featuring a bunch of Barth stuff for the 2019 centennial celebration of his Romans (1st ed.).  Take a look, Barthians.  Including, but not limited to (in any sense) these:

Stuff Peter Latomus and Johannes Oecolampadius Discussed 500 Years Ago- And We Still Are

oecolampadius3Latomus, one of the spokesmen of the Waldenses, wrote Oecolampadius and in his letter – as he describes the views of his party – he lists 12 issues with which they struggled.  It’s a pretty good list.

  • Whether among their ministers there ought to be different orders, as bishops, priests, and deacons: “for these seemed to be prescribed by the apostle to Timothy and Titus.… These different ranks, however, did not exist amongst them.”
  • Whether capital punishment should be allowed.
  • Whether evil government were an ordinance of God.
  • Whether they should advise their people to put to death treacherous pretended brethren, who frequently insinuated themselves among them, and then betrayed them to the bishops, monks, and civil governors; in consequence of which the ministers, and sometimes many of the people, were committed to the flames.
  • Whether, on any occasion, they might have recourse to the tribunals of “them that believed not?”
  • The proper line in which inheritances should descend.
  • Whether making interest of money, and the taking of oaths were unlawful.
  • Whether the doctrine of sins, “original, venial, mortal, and of ignorance,” were well founded?
  • Whether they ought to mourn for the dead?
  • Whether all infants were in a state of salvation, and all grown persons, without faith in Christ, the contrary?
  • Whether vows of celibacy were to be admitted, and what were the degrees of consanguinity within which marriage was prohibited.
  • “Lastly,” says the writer, “nothing more disturbs us weak people, though I am conscious it is through our ignorance, than what I have heard and read, from the writings of Luther, concerning free will, and the divine predestination.

Isn’t it amazing that we are still debating these same issues today, 500 years later? Amazing.

A Warning

Yahweh says this, ‘Accursed be anyone who trusts in human beings, who relies on human strength and whose heart turns from Yahweh.  Such a person is like scrub in the wastelands: when good comes, it does not affect him since he lives in the parched places of the desert, uninhabited, salt land.  (Jer. 17:5-6)

Happy Anniversary to one of the Best Publishers in the World


Fun Facts From Church History: Gutenberg’s First Print Run Wasn’t The Bible

It was a series of Catholic ‘Indulgences’.*

*According to Read Mercer Schuchardt in ‘The Reformation as Media Event‘ in The People’s Book: The Reformation and the Bible, p. 95.

There’s No Cause for Believers to Be Unduly Fearful of Death

angel of deathThe faithful ought not to torment themselves above measure with unhappy cares and anxieties; and … they should not be so distracted with fear as to cease from performing their duty, nor decline and faint in such a manner as to grasp at vain hopes and deceitful helps, nor give way to fears and alarms; and, in fine, that they should not be afraid of death, which, though it destroys the body, cannot extinguish the soul. — John Calvin

Wisdom from Konrad Pellikan

pellicanWith the vernacular Bible we teach the people.  With the Latin we defend the Church. – Konrad Pellikan  [Cited by Bruce Gordon].