Daily Archives: 28 Oct 2019

Those ‘Good Guys’ and Their Guns…

This time a cop shot his own son… thinking him an intruder. Maybe if the kid had a gun too he could have defended himself against his dad…

A Note About the Kanye Thing

‘By their fruits shall you know them’.  Let’s wait and see what kind of life he leads before we presume for or against his purported conversion.

American celebrity already has a load of fake Christians bringing disrepute on the Gospel.  Let’s not add another one to the pile unduly.

Nothing Remains of Christianity in American ‘Evangelicalism’

Ben Myers tweets- Evangelical culture tends to have a competitive picture of God and human life. More of God means less of self, or less questioning in search of truth, or less commitment to the enjoyment of beauty. God is pictured as encroaching on a life rather than grounding and fulfilling it.

I respond- i.e., there is virtually nothing remaining of Christianity in so called evangelicalism. The theology is bankrupt and the bible is totally misunderstood and misapplied by the self professed ‘bearers of the Gospel’.

And I can prove it.  Show me one ‘Evangelical’ point in theology or biblical interpretation where Christianity isn’t distorted.

#ICYMI- Let’s Not Forget BAR’s Role in Publishing Scrolls From The Same Sources

Five of its Dead Sea Scroll fragments are fake, the Museum of the Bible in Washington was forced to admit last week. The embarrassed institution may be in good company: Out of at least 70 fragments ostensibly from the Scrolls held in various collections around the world, scholars warn that all are probably forged.

As the experts ponder who is responsible for the scandal in the Museum of the Bible, which may be the largest case of antiquities fraud in years, some researchers are placing a big chunk of the blame on a surprising culprit: themselves.

“Without the scholars, we would not have this big scandal,” agrees Arstein Justnes, a professor of biblical studies at the University of Agder, Norway, who also runs the blog The Lying Pen of Scribes, which tracks the suspicious scroll fragments.

But how could this have happened? How difficult is it to establish that a fragment of pottery or scroll is genuine? The answer is, not as difficult as you might think.

In his opinion, Justnes says, if the fragments in the Bible Museum had turned out to be genuine, they still shouldn’t have been displayed unless the museum divulged their provenance and proved they were legit.

But by uncritically publishing the scroll fragments, the scientific community “sent a strong signal to the antiquities market that it really didn’t care too much about provenance,” he says. “This really stimulated the antiquities market, and it was an encouragement to every looter under the desert sun. For over 15 years, several prominent Dead Sea Scrolls scholars have effectively laundered unprovenanced material.”

And more, which do read.  And though the article completely ignores the major role that BAR has played in the entire Scrolls story, BAR too bears some responsibility.

Calvin on the Depraved and Perverse Practice of Praying to Saints

I say nothing of the more monstrous specimens of impiety in which, though detestable to God, angels, and men, they themselves feel no pain or shame. Prostrated at a statue or picture of Barbara or Catherine, and the like, they mutter a Pater Noster; and so far are their pastors from curing or curbing this frantic course, that, allured by the scent of gain, they approve and applaud it.

But while seeking to relieve themselves of the odium of this vile and criminal procedure, with what pretext can they defend the practice of calling upon Eloy (Eligius) or Medard to look upon their servants, and send them help from heaven, or the Holy Virgin to order her Son to do what they ask?

The Council of Carthage forbade direct prayer to be made at the altar to saints. It is probable that these holy men, unable entirely to suppress the force of depraved custom, had recourse to this check, that public prayers might not be vitiated with such forms of expression as Sancte Petre, ora pro nobis—St Peter, pray for us. But how much farther has this devilish extravagance proceeded when men hesitate not to transfer to the dead the peculiar attributes of Christ and God?

You tell ’em, John.

#ICYMI – Martin Luther’s Anti-Semitism: Against His Better Judgment

Eric W. Gritsch’s contribution to the field of historical theology:  Martin Luther’s Anti-Semitism: Against His Better Judgment.

In this book Eric W. Gritsch, a Lutheran and a distinguished Luther scholar, faces the glaring ugliness of Martin Luther’s anti- Semitism head-on, describing Luther’s journey from initial attempts to proselytize Jews to an appallingly racist position, which he apparently held until his death.

Comprehensively laying out the textual evidence for Luther’s virulent anti-Semitism, Gritsch traces the development of Luther’s thinking in relation to his experiences, external influences, and theological convictions. Revealing greater impending danger with each step, Martin Luther’s Anti-Semitism marches steadily onward until the full extent of Luther’s racism becomes apparent. Gritsch’s unflinching analysis also describes the impact of Luther’s egregious words on subsequent generations and places Luther within Europe’s long history of anti-Semitism.

Throughout, however, Gritsch resists the temptation either to demonize or to exonerate Luther. Rather, readers will recognize Luther’s mistakes as links in a chain that pulled him further and further away from an attitude of respect for Jews as the biblical people of God. Gritsch depicts Luther as a famous example of the intensive struggle with the enduring question of Christian-Jewish relations. It is a great historical tragedy that Luther, of all people, fell victim to anti-Semitism — albeit against his better judgment.

My review of this important volume is here.

Biblical Scholarship in Louvain

by Antonio Gerace and associate editor Günter Frank, Bruce Gordon, Barbara Mahlmann-Bauer, Tarald Rasmussen, Tóth Zsombor, Günther Wassilowsky, Violet Soen and Siegrid Westphal

Hardback, 296 pages
Publication Date: July 2019

Regular Price: $113.00 / Special Offer Price: $91.00

Publisher: V&R Academic
Series: Refo500 Academic Studies (R5AS), 60

Around and About this Evening, for Tea and Dinner

The Seminar Attendees are All Very Happy To be Discussing the New Testament!

The Morning Session…

Went very well.  Lunch was great.  And new cards… well that’s just too cool.