Showing posts from April, 2013

the angry, bloody God of the Bible? part 1

I started writing this today and it turned into one of my dissertation length posts. I'm trying to be a nicer blogger, so I'm breaking it into chunks.

I was listening to today's lectionary reading while riding my bicycle into work and got hung up on this passage.
Psalm 68
19 Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.
20 Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death.
21 Surely God will crush the heads of his enemies, the hairy crowns of those who go on in their sins.
22 The Lord says, “I will bring them from Bashan; I will bring them from the depths of the sea,
23 that your feet may wade in the blood of your foes, while the tongues of your dogs have their share.”
This Psalm has plenty of nice things and encouraging things in this Psalm, but the last two verses put in God's mouth do not agree with what Jesus taught about loving our enemies. I have two directions to go with this dilemma.

David was wrong to attribute…

why is "penny wise, pound foolish" such a hackneyed expression?

"Penny wise, pound foolish," was first written in a book in the 1600's by the British author Robert Burton. It's an idiom that means one chooses tiny gains over expensive losses, usually seen over time. For example, I could choose not to put money in my retirement account, so that I can go out to dine more often now, but I will miss out on, not only on dining out at all when I'm too old to work, but also, more likely, affording more important living expenses. A similar idiom, "cutting off your nose to spite your face," is related. It is an even older expression, meaning to overreact to a problem and create long term damage to a short term situation. If my allergies are really bad, although I may wish to cut off my nose, I know that doing so, to ease my immediate discomfort, would make my life even more miserable.

It seems to me, that many of my fellow citizens, are not aware of the wisdom in these idioms.

I know I am long-winded so I'm trying to kee…

book response: God's Gay Agenda by Turnbull (2012)

Even if you are Christian who is not even open to considering the full inclusion of homosexuals into the life of your church, you can still learn something from Pastor Sandra Turnbull's book, God's Gay Agenda. Why can you learn something from this book? The author is informed. She loves the Bible. She loves Jesus. She sees the fields as "white unto the harvest."

Turnbull pastors Glory Tabernacle Christian Center in Long Beach, CA, and holds a Biblical Studies degree from Evangel University and a Master of Arts from the Claremont School of Theology. See more about her at her bio page. She grew up on the missionary field. She tells some of her own story in the beginning of the book. When she joined Youth With a Mission as a young adult, she developed a relationship with another woman on her team. YWAM sent them home. She submitted herself to Christian ungay-me ministry, which didn't work. Eventually, years later, she reconnected with that woman and they are now mar…

adventures in poor gun rights advocacy

One of my facebook friends posted this to his wall, a forward from a gun rights group.
Right to bear arms only meant muskets like saying your right to free speech was only meant to include olde English spoken in the 1700's. I'm not sure if this is a strawman or if the author really found a gun restriction advocate who only wants to keep muskets legal. This is the data from which to draw conclusions.

Here is the first amendment to the U. S. Constitution in its Bill of Rights.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. I think any gun libertarian would agree that there are some limits to the freedom of their neighbor's speech, especially if he's being slandered by said neighbor. It's called the Harm Principle, as elucidated by the British p…

8th anniversary of the Umblog

Here is what I wrote in my first post on March 24th, 2005,

I've grown up in the church and still remain committed to staying with this ship of fools until we reach the sunset and the welcome reception of Jesus Christ. I hope to point out the pirates on our journey but also give a hand to my fellow fools who might be accused of piracy.
I'm hoping to do this better than I have over the past eight years and 2200 posts.

Jesus Christ Crucifix (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The evangelical Jefferson Bible

Facebook is a great place to find inspiration for blog posts. Have you seen this false one about General Pershing and Philippino Muslim terrorists? It's totally gruesome.

A [completely not-]True story about General "Black Jack" Pershing.
Born September 13th, 1860 near Laclede, Mississippi
Died July 15th, 1948 in Washington, D.C.
1891 Professor of Military Science and Tactics University of Nebraska
1898 Serves in the Spanish-American War 1901 Awarded rank of Captain
1906 Promoted to rank of Brigadier General 1909 Military Governor of Moro Province, Philippines
1916 Made Major General 1919 Promoted to General of the Armies 1921 Appointed Chief of Staff
1924 Retires from active duty Education: 4 Years-West Point
One important thing to remember is that Muslims detest pork because they believe pigs are filthy animals. Some of them simply refuse to eat it, while others won't even touch pigs at all, nor any of their by-products. To them, eating or touching a pig, its meat, …