Daily Archives: 8 Mar 2019

Some Books Are Just Not Worth Your Time

Life is too short to waste time reading universalist rubbish by David Bentley Hart, or anyone else, just like it’s too short to eat a bowl of warm cat vomit.

Both only result in copious regurgitation and you don’t have to do either to know you don’t want to.

No Teacher has the Right to Tell a Kid to Remove Lenten Ash. Period.

Ever.  Fire that teacher.  Today.

Utter Madness and Absurdity

This is perverse, both for the one doing it and the ones wishing it done or accepting it.  The Bible isn’t a publicity opportunity for a man who is more immoral than most of the people in the Bible.

I don’t know who the ‘pastor’ of that church is, but the fact that he didn’t say ‘oh no you can’t’ shows him or her to be a culpable heretic.

God Gives Wealth to Fools, In Order to Destroy Them

Wealth is the least important of all things upon the earth, the smallest gift that God has bestowed on man. What is it, compared to the Word of God? Yes, what is it, compared even to bodily gifts and beauty? What is it, compared to the gifts of the mind? Yet people strive so for it! By no category of logic can it be called good—for its substance, its quality, as a means or as an end. Therefore God gives it commonly to coarse fools, to whom he means no good. — Martin Luther

Pioneering Women in Archaeology for this #InternationalWomanDay

Give it a read here.  And yes, of course Kathleen Kenyon is mentioned.  It wouldn’t be a responsible essay if she weren’t.

Zwingli Bibliographie

Zwingli-Bibliographie: Verzeichnis der gedruckten Schriften von und über Ulrich Zwingli

IMG_7881Brill have brought back this classic work from 1968 in celebration of the 500th anniversary of Zwingli’s arrival in Zurich.

Printed in the fantastic Fraktur font which graced the printings of so many wonderful volumes of the last century in Germany, this is exactly what it purports to be- a bibliography both of Zwingli’s own works and of the works which graced his personal library.

Though not as thorough as the modern critically assembled listing (which the Central Library of Zurich has put together) and though less informative than the brilliant work of Urs Leu and Sandra Wiedmann which was just published a few months ago, also by Brill, the present work nonetheless is a valuable tool for research.

Divided into two major sections, readers are provided, firstly, a listing including full title page details of all of Zwingli’s works in chronological order.  The second major section then offers a listing with all the relevant bibliographic details of works which discuss Zwingli from 1600 to the days of Georg Finsler (the author of the present tome).

Then appears an index of Zwingli’s works in alphabetical order; an index of chronological events from Zwingli’s life; an index of particular themes connected to Zwingli’s work; and finally an index arranged chronologically containing all the works in the volume.

This volume is no mean achievement; especially given that it was written long before anyone had access to computers or even modern research tools.  It was, in sum, all done ‘by hand’ and is a miracle accomplishment.

This tool is an important, indeed a critical work which needs to sit on the shelves of every research library.  Allow me to be personal and address you familiarly for a moment: if your library doesn’t have a copy of this book, tell your librarian that it must be ordered.

And then use it.


Women of the Bible: Jael – On the #InternationalWomensDay

jaelJael– The Kenite woman who killed the Canaanite army commander Sisera after his defeat by the Israelites under Barak and Deborah. The name is also found as an Amorite village in the Mari period.

Jael’s actions are recorded both in a prose account (Judg. 4:17–22) and the Song of Deborah (5:24–27), one of the oldest examples of Hebrew literature and probably the more authoritative of these versions. These accounts differ in major details, and neither reveals Jael’s motive. While the Kenites had long been associates of the tribe of Judah (cf. 1:16), they are not listed among those fighting the Canaanites; indeed, 4:17 indicates that Heber and Jabin were allies, so it is difficult to suggest that Jael killed Sisera out of a sense of obligation to Judah.

According to the Song of Deborah, Jael lulled Sisera into complacency by hospitably offering him milk and curds, only to drive a tent peg into his skull as he ate. The prose account provides more of a context for what took place. Jael invited the exhausted and pursued Sisera into her tent. When Sisera asked for water Jael gave him milk and then covered him with a blanket. Before collapsing into sleep Sisera charged Jael to keep watch near the tent entrance and to deny that anyone was in the tent. Then, as he slept, Jael hammered a tent peg into his skull and greeted the pursuing Barak with the news that his enemy was dead.*

She’s one of my favorites.

*Allen C. Myers, The Eerdmans Bible Dictionary (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1987), 547.

Today With Zwingli: A Letter of Assurance

On 8 March, 1525, in the midst of the controversy with the Re-Baptizing radicals Zwingli wrote a letter to a fellow named Jodocus Hesch.  In it, he confirms his brotherly affection for Hesch and insists that that affection won’t be affected by anything he might hear by word or letter.

Quam equidem conditionem sic tecum subiturus sum, ut nulla sit unquam ętas de perfidia nostra querimoniam ullam habitura; pollicere igitur de nobis non uti de reconciliato hoste, sed uti de fratre, quocum nulla unquam offensio intercessit. Que praesentium lator ad nos attulit, optime curata sunt. Verum, heus tu, senatus noster indubiemaiorem fidem servaturus est, quam ulle possent litere, presertim hoc rerum statu, quo, si vel iota unum excideret [Matth. 5. 18], fieret tota Ilias. Ut ergo amicum ad nos misisti nullis munitum pignoribus, quod equidem pro maximo pignore puto, vis enim tibi fidem haberi, id quod purę plerumque consciencie postulant: sic et nos eundem carissimum et fidelissimum fratrem nostrum ad te remittimus, qui ore ad os, quod dicitur, omnia non modo referet, sed etiam aget tecum.

When Zwingli was your friend, he was loyal to the end.  When he wasn’t… well…

Anna Zwingli Laments Her Husband

Schaff writes of Anna Zwingli’s reaction to Huldrych’s death:

Der armen Frow Zwinglin Klag, published in the “Alpenrosen,” Bern, 1820, p. 273; in Zwingli’s Werke, II. B. 281; also in Christoffel, I. 413, and Moerikofer, II. 517. After giving vent to her woe, Anna Zwingli resorts to the Bible, which was her husband’s comfort, and was to be hers.  I select the first and the last of the fourteen stanzas of this poem, which Moerikofer numbers among “the imperishable monuments of the great man.”

1. “O Herre Gott, wie heftig shluog Mich dynes Zornes Ruthen!
Du armes Herz, ist’s nit genuog, Kannst du noch nicht verbluoten?
Ich ring die Hand:
Kaem’ doch myn End! Wer nag myn Elendfassen?
Wer misst die Not?
Myn Gott, Myn Gott,
Hast du mich gar verlassen?
14. Komm du, o Buoch du warst syn Hort, Syn Trost in allem Uebel.
Ward er verfolgt mit That und Wort, So griff er nach der Bibel,
Fand Hilf bei ihr.
Herr, zeige mir Die Hilf in Jesu Namen!
Gib Muoth und Staerk
Zum schweren Werk
Dem schwachen Wybe! Amen.”

Quote of the Day

Sin is the oracle of the wicked in the depths of his heart; there is no fear of God before his eyes.  He sees himself with too flattering an eye to detect and detest his guilt; all he says is malicious and deceitful, he has turned his back on wisdom. To get his way he hatches malicious plots even in his bed; once set on his evil course no wickedness is too much for him.  (Ps. 36:1-4)

Melanchthon’s View of the Supper

Melanchthon rejects the idea that “the bread is substantially the body of Christ,” as well as that “the bread is the true body of Christ.” Instead, he claims that the bread is “united with” (consociatio cum) the body of Christ, and only “in the use” and “not without cognition,” not in such a way that it could be eaten by mice. He rejects the idea that the body is “in the bread or in the species of the bread, as if the true sacrament was instituted for the sake of the bread and the Papist adoration.” —  Bjorn Hovda

#Bam.  This is Calvin’s view as well as Zwingli’s.  Melanchthon always did have more sense than Luther (who was, to be fair, always a Roman Catholic… after 1520 just without a Pope).

Heroines of the Bible

On this #InternationalWomensDay, give this neat essay a read.

Joel Green and the People from Toilet Duck

Someone’s in a mood… 😉

Remnant of Giants

New Testament Theologian Joel B. Green has provoked outrage among many Biblical Scholars over the last couple of days for his explanation of what makes a good Biblical Scholar.

Was it that Green insisted on painstaking study of ancient languages? That a good Biblical Scholar must be familiar with a huge quantity of literature from the ancient Near Eastern or Greco-Roman period? That they must be familiar with the archaeology and material culture of the period?

Er, no.

Here is Green’s answer to the question, “What makes a good Biblical Scholar?”:

The best biblical scholars genuinely love Scripture, and come to its pages ready to hear God’s address. They exhibit both a certain posture vis-à-vis the text and their own formation in relation to it, and a commitment to the hard work of reading Scripture that takes seriously the nature of the text.

The former involves the life of…

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