31 May 2006
Power and emptiness
Western civilization began to worship power when it began to doubt significance. The reason Lewis, Chesterton, Williams, Tolkien, and Thomas Howard fascinate us so much is that they still live in the medieval world, a world chocked-full of the built-in, God-designed significance. That’s why they all think analogically, sacramentally, imagistically. For them everything means something beyond itself. Everything is not only a thing, but a sign full of significance. Modernity, confining itself to the scientific method as the model for knowing reality, deliberately induces in itself what Lewis calls a dog-like state of mind, full of facts and empty of significance. Point to your dog’s food, and he will sniff your finger. Show a baby a book, and he will try to eat it rather than read it. Show modern man a lion, and he will try to tame it and make money out of it in a circus, and smile superiorly at the quaint old medieval who saw it as the King of Beasts and the natural symbol in the animal kingdom of the great King of Kings. -Peter Kreeft
25 May 2006
King of the Hill
Some funny satire. “Day by Day…”
Isn’t leaving your church over pews kind of old school, though?
22 May 2006
Lawn and Garden time
The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. -Gen 2:15
Miscellaneous things in the garage that I return to time and again:
And as for this, well, only in America. I hear their mosquito repellent works great.
18 May 2006
Shoplifting, pro and con
We see more and more articles on debating women’s ordination, even from evangelical churches. The idea is that it’s not a key issue, so all the he and shes out there can lovingly disagree.
Since Christ ascended into heaven, the church has debated the sacraments, soteriology, and a multitude of other things, but it never debated women in the pulpit until the 19th century. Think about that. The standard retort is that we are enlightened now. That view doesn’t hold up to scrutiny; does the average evangelical leader really want to compare his walk with Athanasius, Tyndale, or Spurgeon? Moreover, it denigrates the Spirit’s witness in nearly every leader the Church ever had. The ordination of women was not debated for a simple reason: the Scripture is utterly clear on the topic. You don’t need to generalize Galatians 3:28 or speculate about the life of Eunice, you just need to read what Paul clearly stated. You can just look at the entire context of Scripture, where priestesses and apostlettes are conspicuously absent. Our walk is about renewing our minds (Rom 12:2) to conform with the ancient but ageless Word of God, not pandering to the spirit of this age.
It’s no different than debating shoplifting. Shoplifting, pro or con? If we debate it in enough articles and books, perhaps people will discover a more “balanced” view of the Eighth Commandment that the entire church missed out on for 2,000 years. What nuances does “Thou Shalt Not Steal” hide?
It’s aggravating to see the church having to waste time dealing with convoluted arguments that muddy the obvious. But I guess that’s what it means to guard the good deposit (2 Tim 1:14).
14 May 2006
More from Dan Brown
While it is my belief that some of the theories discussed by these characters may have merit, each individual reader must explore these characters’ viewpoints and come to his or her own interpretations. -Dan Brown on his FAQ.
What is it about so many of our contemporaries that they think we gain intellectually by entertaining patently false history? “It made me think,” we are told.
If you must do engage in this, how about doing it with something less damaging? Here’s something to ponder:
“Jack of Jack’s Pipe is a 14-foot tall mutant who came from the planet Meepzorp in 1323 BC.”
Ok, please discuss, explore, and come to your own interpretation. Do it. Go on. Do it.
11 May 2006
Dan Brown’s Sweet Mystery of Life
At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life. -Anthony Kennedy from a 1992 ruling
Some of you may recall that piece of dime store theorizing, wittily ridiculed by Antonia Scalia as the “Sweet Mystery of Life passage.” Well, here’s an excerpt from Dan Brown’s site:
ARE YOU A CHRISTIAN?
Yes. Interestingly, if you ask three people what it means to be Christian, you will get three different answers. Some feel being baptized is sufficient. Others feel you must accept the Bible as absolute historical fact. Still others require a belief that all those who do not accept Christ as their personal savior are doomed to hell. Faith is a continuum, and we each fall on that line where we may. By attempting to rigidly classify ethereal concepts like faith, we end up debating semantics to the point where we entirely miss the obvious–that is, that we are all trying to decipher life’s big mysteries, and we’re each following our own paths of enlightenment. I consider myself a student of many religions. The more I learn, the more questions I have. For me, the spiritual quest will be a life-long work in progress.
That’s classic 21st century America pseudo-intellectualism for you, the confusion of broad-mindedness with, well, confusion. Never mind all that blunt business about the narrow gate (Matt 7:13), just hack out your own path to discovering “life’s big mysteries.” There’s just one rule: Don’t tread on me, brother. I am my way, my truth, and my life.
Compare all this with two verses considered so important that they were repeated. There isn’t anything very “ethereal” about them:
Jesus in Luke 12:
I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him!
Paul in Galations 1:
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel– not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
06 May 2006
What’s up with Ernie Johnson’s face?
02 May 2006
A modern-day Madame LaFarge
The sinner hates God, disobeys God, is ungrateful to God for all His favors, would kill God if he could. He is dead in trespasses and sins. (Eph.2:1) -John Gerstner
Professor Sally A. Jacobsen, former head of the Northern Kentucky University women’s studies program, was upset. And so what once was this… soon became this.
“Any violence perpetrated against that silly display was minor compared to how I felt when I saw it. Some of my students felt the same way, just outraged,” Jacobsen said. “I did, outside of class during the break, invite students to express their freedom-of-speech rights to destroy the display if they wished to.”
01 May 2006
Filtering / accountability software update
I finally have removed Integrity Online Shield and X3Watch from my main machine. The impetus was some ongoing, occasional situations in Firefox where pages would not load properly; I’m not sure if either package caused it, but it has not happened since they were removed. Covenant Eyes, which has been on my laptop for many months, is now installed on my desktop machine. I still like this accountability software and its quality, readable logs. It is the best solution out there for adults for the reasons mentioned in previous posts. Try it out.
The Covenant Eyes filtering software is done but they are installing more server bandwidth to support it. It is supposed to be out in another month or so.