If Avalos really thinks that biblical scholarship should be discontinued, he should take the lead and discontinue his own activities in biblical scholarship. Otherwise, there’s a word for him. Hypocrite.
Were Avalos even remotely ethical as a person he would leave the field he despises. But, alas, like the angry atheist pastors who remain in the service of the Church because they fear they cannot be employed elsewhere or simply like the money too much, so too Avalos who is either unwilling or unable to do some other sort of work.
Again, we have a word for that sort of person: hypocrite. Poor Avalos. To live in a field you literally despise and yet to make your living from it. He must be terribly conflicted and terribly disoriented.
Via Francesca on the twitter
If you think that the KJV is somehow to be preferred to the original languages, you’re just so very wrong and so very profoundly ignorant that it boggles the mind.
Egypt’s Antiquities Ministry announced this morning that a team of underwater archaeologists had discovered that remains of a large Egyptian army from the 14th century BC, at the bottom of the Gulf of Suez, 1.5 kilometers offshore from the modern city of Ras Gharib. The team was searching for the remains of ancient ships and artifacts related to Stone Age and Bronze Age trade in the Red Sea area, when they stumbled upon a gigantic mass of human bones darkened by age.
The scientists lead by Professor Abdel Muhammad Gader and associated with Cairo University’s Faculty of Archaeology, have already recovered a total of more than 400 different skeletons, as well as hundreds of weapons and pieces of armor, also the remains of two war chariots, scattered over an area of approximately 200 square meters. They estimate that more than 5000 other bodies could be dispersed over a wider area, suggesting that an army of large size who have perished on the site.
Mmmm hmmmm…… And the original source of the unproven claim is the ‘WorldNewsDailyReport’ website… which is something like the National Enquirer.
Why, Lord, why? It’s another ‘End of the World‘ predictor. This time it’s Oct 7 2105. What it is about October that these nutters love so much? I only know of this because they’re following me on the twitter (till they see this anyway).
Without further ado- end of the worlders- here’s your dilly-
A friend, or should I say former friend, sent along a copy of Hector Avalos’ latest anti-Christian screed and asked me what I thought of it. So, I plunged right in and after a few pages knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that if I wished to proceed further I would have to abandon sense and sensibility and assume a posture of ahistorical agenda driven silliness.
Avalos is, nonetheless, here at his very best. His very best. Because what readers find (at least in the first 10 pages or so- that was all I could stomach) is the same sort of ‘I hate Christianity so much that I’m willing to say and write anything I can to make it look ridiculous and all of its practitioners stupid fundamentalists who – unlike myself and my sycophant toadies – are enlightened and learned’ that he spewed in his extraordinarily hypocritical ‘The End of Biblical Studies’. If he had been honest at the conclusion of that particular foray into hate-speech disguised as academic discourse he would have resigned his post and taken up basket weaving or returned to faith healing or something besides academic pursuits in the field of biblical studies. But instead, he deemed it proper that he would continue to earn his living from a field he both despises and wishes to see destroyed. How’s that for intellectual honesty.
Which brings us to the point of his present book. ‘The Bad Jesus’ is – at least as far as I could stomach it – nothing more than bad method wrapped in badly enacted atheistic propaganda. Fair enough. Avalos is an atheist. Who cares. He’s got an agenda. Who cares. He’s not very competent as an exegete. Who cares. Avalos can write whatever he wants and say whatever he wants and his sycophantic fans will lap it up and spew it out like a dog regurgitates its own lunch. Who cares.
My purpose here isn’t to dissuade him from writing (as if he would simply because I wished it) or you from reading him (because, honestly, if you have such little regard for the facts and are willing to part with a good bit of money to do it, that’s your business). My purpose is simply to point out
- That Avalos doesn’t prove Jesus was bad- he only proves himself a bad expositor.
- That Avalos operates not as a scholar, but as an agenda driven activist whose aim is the end of biblical scholarship and the denunciation of Christianity.
- That Avalos’ book is not, in my view, worth reading (unless you’re already an angry atheist- in which case you will find him a happy ally).
- That there are much better, much wiser, much more circumspect, much more academically informed, much more insightful volumes on the subject of New Testament ethics than Avalos can provide given his blinkered and angry hate filled clouded vision. Even Richard Hays’ book on the subject is superior.
When I finished off Avalos’ book, that is, again, what I could stomach of it, I threw it in the garbage. I’ve only done that with one other book before (the rest I’ve sold or given away). That, in sum, in my view, is where it belongs. At least in that locale it can serve a useful purpose.
‘Bad Jesus’? There’s no way to tell from Avalos’ book. One learns nothing from it except where one left the antacid.
But I don’t know any Christian anyone much less preacher who thinks that Jesus is the Antichrist….
I wish Joel would stop signing me up for nutty loon lists.
Read this report from NPR and substitute biblical scholars for shark biologists and you’ll understand how infuriating it is to watch people who profess to love biblical studies appear on Discovery, which cares NOTHING for the truth and only for ratings. After describing a guy who researches sharks and his excitement about being a part of the series, Shark Week, NPR continues-
You can guess what happened next. To his horror, Davis found himself featured on a “documentary” that had little to do with his research. Voodoo Shark strongly suggested that Davis believed in the Rooken.
“There’s no way I could’ve known they were going to portray it like that,” he says.
Voodoo Shark shows Davis and his team doing real research, pulling sharks out of the water and tagging them on the deck. Davis says he did not see any unusual sharks. What was unusual was a producer’s reaction when they hooked a big one.
“One of the guys was like, “Oh, maybe you should just let it bite you, that would be so exciting.’ And I was just thinking to myself, ‘Are you kidding me? You really think I wanna let the shark bite me just for ratings? Are you serious?’ ”
Ellen Prager, a marine scientist who has taught at the University of Miami and writes books for children about sharks, says she and her colleagues have a list of things that drive them crazy about Shark Week, such as the emphasis on sharks attacking people and feeding frenzies.
And yet biblical scholars will continue to jump the shark and appear on whatever garbage Discovery airs. When they do, they deserve, richly, to be associated for the rest of their careers with the dissemination of absolute stupidity.
Scientists know that Discovery twists the truth. Why don’t biblical scholars? And if they do (and they have to), then what is it about them that makes them willing to turn their backs on the facts and become part of something insidious and dishonest?