Daily Archives: 11 Apr 2019

Alexa is a Listening Device that Amazon Uses to Hear your Conversations

A person would have to be an idiot to put one in their home.

In a report by Bloomberg, Amazon admitted that thousands of recordings are analyzed by staff and transcribed before being fed back into the software. 

Amazon says as many 1,000 recordings a day are reviewed by workers all over the world, in countries including Romania, India and Costa Rica.

Etc.

A Prayer for America

Get up, LORD! Get your fist ready, God! Don’t forget the ones who suffer!  Why do the wicked reject God? Why do they think to themselves that you won’t find out?  But you do see! You do see troublemaking and grief, and you do something about it! The helpless leave it all to you. You are the orphan’s helper.  Break the arms of those who are wicked and evil. Seek out their wickedness until there’s no more to find. — (Ps. 10:12-15)

Amen.

Julian Assange is Putin’s Lapdog

Assange is an indecency. A puppet of Putin.  A Russian’s lapdog.

@michaeldweiss  — When the Guardian editors told him they would redact the names of Afghans mentioned in the cables whose lives would be otherwise endangered, Assange said: “Well, they’re informants. So, if they get killed, they’ve got it coming to them. They deserve it.”

This is Why, If You Administer an Academic Page on Facebook, You Need to Be Vigilant

Otherwise the nutbags come out of the woodworks…

I won’t shame the academic page this is sitting on by naming it.  But it’s been there over 22 hours….

Church Marketing…

Is an abomination.

Lecture Announcement: Graham Twelftree on Jesus as Miracle Worker

“Jesus, Magician or Miracle Worker?”

Professor Graham H. Twelftree (Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity, London School of Theology, United Kingdom)

Response by Dr. Karen J. Wenell (Lecturer in New Testament and Theology, University of Birmingham)

Venue: Arts Building Lecture Room 3 (127), University of Birmingham

The Centre for Pentecostal and Charistmatic Studies and the Department of Theology and Religion at the University of Birmingham is delighted to welcome you to the Annual Walter J. Hollenweger Lecture, in honour and memory of Walter J. Hollenweger, an expert in global Pentecostalism who served as Professor of Mission at the University of Birmingham and Selly Oak Colleges from 1971 to 1989.

The lecture is free and open to all.

And more.

Pope Benedict Has Lost His Mind

Or he’s just historically ignorant.  Or both.

500 years ago Luther lamented the perversity of the monks.  And what he meant was the widespread molestation of youngsters whose parents sent them to those hellhole monasteries.

Benedict is wrong about a lot of stuff.  And he’s especially wrong here.  He needs to re-read the history of the Church.

I Thought This Was a Joke…

But it’s not…

I have to say right from the start that I have never, in my 58 years, seen a gingerbread man with any genitals.  Every gingerbread man I have ever seen was gender free.  So this is just another pandering silliness to an extremist fringe.

The Disinformation Campaign of the History Channel

The disinformation about biblical studies disseminated on the History Channel is dangerous simply because once a false representation of the text is out there, it can never be corrected in the popular mind.

Scholars can say what they like, as much as they like, about the inaccuracies of wild speculation; but the public will never change its mind.

It’s easier to tell the truth the first time than it is to correct a lie later.

Six Easy Ways to Get the Precious Millennials and the Seekers in Your Doors this Easter

Good advice from the Bee– though their title is a bit different…

1.) Blast visitors in the face with T-shirt cannons. T-shirt giveaways are a staple of any true church’s Easter service, of course. But why not up the ante? Buy a T-shirt cannon and have your pastoral staff roam throughout the crowd and just blast visitors right in the face with them when they least expect it. Classic!

2.) Show hilarious movie clips. What better way to show the weight of what was accomplished by our Savior on the bloody cross and in the empty tomb than a clip from Happy Gilmore?

3.) Invite Lady Gaga to preach. If you have a regular pastor-dude preach, there’s a really good chance your audience checks out before you get past your introduction. Instead, invite a guest preacher. Might we suggest Lady Gaga? She’s relevant, hip, trendy, and accepting—and she was born that way!

4.) Hire a helicopter to drop bags of cash from the sky. Lots of churches do a lame easter egg hunt. Booooooooriiiiiiiing. Instead, you should spend thousands of dollars to hire a helicopter, stuff it with bags full of cash, and have it fly over the church lawn and drop bags of cash on churchgoers. Make it rain, baby!

5.) Give away expensive cars, private jets, and luxury yachts. No one wants to come to your boring Easter service unless you promise that you’re going to have a mega-awesome giveaway. But tickets for sporting events and big-screen TVs just don’t cut it anymore. In the ultra-competitive church market, you’ve got to stand out. Give away the title to a few Bentleys, a Gulfstream or two, and even a 100-foot luxury mega yacht, to ensure your church is just that much more awesome than the other churches in your area.

6.) Dispense pithy advice and insights in lieu of preaching Christ crucified. People don’t come to your Easter service to hear about atonement, wrath, the sin that separates us from God, and the way of salvation that He made for us. Rather, they want to find out how to achieve a healthy balance and live a more victorious life. Go ahead and just cut out all that gospel, and replace it with really pragmatic insights about how to manage a busy schedule.

There you have it—you’re on your way. This is going to be the best Easter service ever!

But remember, they won’t be back the week after Easter.  But that’s ok, isn’t it.  Making disciples is sooooooooo hard….

To the Eric Ericksons of America who Denounce Episcopalianism

Before you denounce an entire denomination of Episcopalians maybe you should know some things:

  • There are a whole lot of conservative Episcopalians.
  • There are a whole lot of moderate Episcopalians.
  • There are a whole lot of liberal Episcopalians.
  • There are a few heretical Episcopalians.

And there are a whole lot of Baptist heretics. Eric Erickson is one of them.

Accordingly, before you spew your ignorant bile, learn the facts or just keep your big fat traps shut.

Fun Facts From Church History: Singing For Mary

“A certain wicked priest, when he was chanting the evening prayers on Christmas Eve, said, ‘We have to do all this singing although Mary had only one child. What would it be like if she had had more? We’d have to scream ourselves to death!’ ”  — Martin Luther

Calvin on the Vapidity of Philosophy

When he’s right, he’s just right.

All theology, when separated from Christ, is not only vain and confused, but is also mad, deceitful, and spurious; for, though the philosophers sometimes utter excellent sayings, yet they have nothing but what is short-lived, and even mixed up with wicked and erroneous sentiments. — John Calvin

A Timely Word From Your Friend John

calvin10“The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, for they are spiritually discerned,” (1 Cor. 2:14). Whom does he mean by the “natural man”? The man who trusts to the light of nature. Such a man has no understanding in the spiritual mysteries of God. Why so? Is it because through sloth he neglects them? Nay, though he exert himself, it is of no avail; they are “spiritually discerned.” And what does this mean? That altogether hidden from human discernment, they are made known only by the revelation of the Spirit; so that they are accounted foolishness wherever the Spirit does not give light. — John Calvin

Truth Matters: Zwingli on the Mass

The Papists depart from truth when they proclaim that they offer Christ for sin in the Mass. For as He offered Himself once on the cross and again to the Father in heaven, so He won and obtained remission of sins and the joy of everlasting happiness, and he who boasts that he offers Him to the Father can in no way more completely reject or deny Christ. — Huldrych Zwingli

Black Hole Photos and Credit Where Credit is Due

The World Set Free: Teaching the Strange, Familiar Christ 得自由的世界: 認識既熟悉又陌生的基督

Read this:

HKSKH Ming Hua Theological College eNews

Principal Gareth Jones gives a taste of his Jesus the Christ course which will run this autumn

It is a terrible, wonderful thing to teach a course on ‘Jesus the Christ’.


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Quote of the Day

“Sociological studies suggest that the real danger for millennials is not ‘spiritual indoctrination.’   On the contrary, we are perhaps the least catechized, the most theologically and ethically illiterate generation ever.” — Anna Williams

That’s impossible to disagree with.  The very theological and ethical ignorance here lamented (rightly) is the reason why so many of that particular demographic are drawn into the web of the Emergent Movement’s (and other cults) deceptions.  They don’t know any better and ignorance isn’t bliss, it’s death.