Daily Archives: 31 Mar 2019

Taking Fraud to a Higher Level

Are you too lazy to do your own work?  Did your parents bribe the school you’re at to let you in?  Then by all means, take your cheating to the next level and let these vermin help you use AI to cheat your way through your next paper.  Their algorithm will match your idiotic writing style to an idiot willing to do the writing for you who also writes in your idiotic writing style.

Welcome to depravity.

How Not to Interpret Archaeological Materials

The discovery of an object dated to ‘biblical times’ with a ‘biblical name’ on it is not proof of any historical aspect of the biblical text.  It’s just an item with a name on it that happens to be a name found in the bible.  Nothing more.

And if you insist on following the reasoning of “biblical archaeology” and the discovery of every object with a name found in the bible proves something historical, then you are using circular reasoning and that’s a logical fallacy. A button does not make a suit.

It simply is not proof to say ‘Nathan was named in the bible.  We have an object with the name Nathan on it.  Therefore, we have proof of the biblical narrative that names Nathan.”  It’s circular reasoning and too much that calls itself scholarship is filled with it.

Be skeptical.  Skepticism is the very soul of scholarship because it forces us to ask hard questions in our quest for truth.  And make no mistake, it is a quest for truth that is our object, not the enrichment of a magazine or pseudo-scholars who write rubbish books or star on tv shows.

Fun Facts from Church History: When Zwingli Sends a Copy of His Latest Book…

The book [i.e., the Commentary on True and False Religion] came from the press at the end of March, 1525. Zwingli sent a copy to Vadian (March 31) and one to Christoph Schappeler at Memmingen. Ludwig Sigwyn, of Swabia, is known to have had a copy by August 23, 1525; it was probably a gift from the author. Thus the new publication served to propagate Zwinglian doctrine in South Germany. A German edition of 608 octavo pages, translated by Leo Jud, was published in 1526 by Froschauer at Zurich. Professor Walther Köhler, of the University of Zurich, translated part of the Commentary into German and incorporated it in his work, entitled, Ulrich Zwingli, eine Auswahl aus seinen Schriften, Zurich, 1918. — George Warren Richards, The Latin Works of Huldreich Zwingli, vol. 3.

19 and Dead Because he Knocked on the Wrong Door

What a world.

A teen has been shot and killed after knocking on the wrong door, police have said.

Nineteen-year-old Omarian Banks had recently moved to a new apartment building in Georgia, Atlanta. According to police, Banks was dropped off by a taxi at around 12.30am on Friday morning and, as he wasn’t familiar with the area, he went to the wrong apartment.

Etc. What a terrible world.

Fun Facts From Church History: Leo and His Indulgences

SaleOfIndulgencesThe bull of indulgences was issued March 31,1516, and granted the young German prelate [Prince Albrecht of Brandenburg] the right to dispose of pardons throughout the half part of Germany, the period being fixed at 8 years. The bull offered, “complete absolution—plenissimam indulgentiam—and remission of all sins,” sins both of the living and the dead.

A private paper, emanating from Leo and dated two weeks later, April 15, mentions the 10,000 ducats proposed by the Vatican as the price of Albrecht’s confirmation as having been already placed in Leo’s hands.

To enable him to pay the full amount of 30,000 ducats his ecclesiastical dignities had cost, Albrecht borrowed from the Fuggers and, to secure funds, he resorted to a two-years’ tax of two-fifths which he levied on the priests, the convents and other religious institutions of his dioceses. In 1517, “out of regard for his Holiness, the pope, and the salvation and comfort of his people,” Joachim opened his domains to the indulgence-hawkers.

It was his preaching in connection with this bull that won for Tetzel an undying notoriety. Oldecop, writing in 1516, of what he saw, said that people, in their eagerness to secure deliverance from the guilt and penalty of sin and to get their parents and friends out of purgatory, were putting money into the chest all day long.

Make no mistake, though, many Catholics thought this business a disgrace.

Even the Roman Catholic, Paulus, in his book Tetzel, p. 31, goes as far as to speak of “the miserable business which for both Leo and Albrecht was first of all a financial transaction.”

Indulgences weren’t about the souls of the Church, they were about money for the Pope.  The papacy has had many low points in its history- low points that would make the likes of today’s televangelists green with envy.  But this traffic may be among its lowest.

A Seal Which Bears the Name Natan-Melech

Via Joeseph Lauer-

This morning, Sunday, March 31, 2019, the IAA circulated English and Hebrew press releases titled “Who Was ‘Natan-Melech the King’s Servant?’” and announcing that, among other finds, “A seal bearing a name that appears in the Bible was discovered in the City of David.”

The English release (titled “Rare seal bearing biblical name found in City of David excavation”) may also be read at the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs site at http://tinyurl.com/yxheyk5o. As noted in the release, 11 high resolution pictures and English and Hebrew videos (as well as the English and Hebrew releases) may be downloaded at the place in the release stating “Click here for Photos and a Movie Clip:” The English video is 3:09 minutes. The Hebrew video is 2:44-minutes. (The credits that should be noted if the items are used are also in the attached release.)

The pictures, video and releases may also be accessed at http://tinyurl.com/yyupnhkt

Doubtless BAR will shortly have an essay declaring this to be the seal of the prophet Nathan before the week is out.  Because speculation sells.

#ICYMI – A Discourse Analysis of Ruth. A Review of a Book I Dislike Immensely

9780310282983_455_600_90Zondervan Academic have sent along this for a looksee-

The Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the Old Testament serves pastors and teachers by providing them with a careful analysis and interpretation of the biblical text, rooted in a study of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament and intended to track the flow of the argument in each book and passage.

The layout of the commentary isn’t the standard fare.  Instead, each pericope is titled, it’s ‘scenes’ are subdivided, the main idea of the passage is offered, the literary context is described, the structure and literary form are shown, extensive flow charts of the sentences and phrases are displayed (think sentence diagram charts), and then, finally, the text is ‘explained’.  Useful informational boxes and sidebars along with charts and graphs festoon the work, some of them resembling computer scroll boxes (I know not why).

After the text is treated, our author generates what he describes as ‘A Dramatic Reading of the Book of Ruth’.  This snippet includes a suggested stage arrangement along with the script of a play with various narrators and actors.  The work concludes with a Scripture Index, a subject Index, and an author Index.

I dislike the volume immensely.  I dislike its girth.  It attempts too much and delivers too little.  It rambles on and on endlessly in such a way that one feels as though one has visited Grandma and she’s talked about 15 disparate topics in an hour and you still have no idea what the point of it all was.  The Book of Ruth is tiny.  It shouldn’t take anyone 200 pages to explain it to modern readers of the Bible.

It’s too busy.  It’s too crowded.  The graphs and their little tiny arrows virtually gouge into the reader’s eyes and by the time a single chapter of the volume has been worked through the reader will be begging those little tiny arrows to bolt from the page and plunge themselves into and through one’s own eyes so that the misery of experiencing the volume is terminated.

There are so many excellent commentaries on Ruth.  Go buy one of them.  This isn’t one.  It isn’t even worth borrowing from the library.  it is infuriating and annoying and spite producing.  I literally hated it like I’ve not hated a book in a very long time.

Avoid this book like the plague it is.

Quote of the Day

It is of no avail that the same walls encompass us if difference of will separate us—since God regards rather unity of mind than of dwelling. Behold, we are a number of individuals under one roof, with different ways of acting, different hearts, different wills: all which one intention and one love of God must weld together in unity. – Hugh of St. Victor

Sad News: Klaus Koch has Died

Via Jack Sasson-

Klaus Koch died peacefully on March 28, 2019 in his home in Hamburg, Germany.

A leading German scholar on the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Koch is especially known for his work on form-criticism, prophecy, and apocalypticism. For a summary (Laudatio) of his work, see the academia.edu page of Martin Rösel (both in German).