Feel like hanging out with mates, but I think none of them are in town....
Guess, I will come out with something tomorrow morning. Holy Spirit works better in the morning sometimes.
.....AN EXTRA SABBATH IN A YEAR.....
What makes 2 people wanna fornicate in the first place? Is it just addiction where you can have sex with anyone? Is it a physical connection on a different level? Is it just a moment of folly? Or is just 2 people at the right place at the right time?...
It got people like evolutionists puzzle as to the origin of sex. Humans working on 'natural selection' and 'random variation' to form fitter survival physiology. But if parthenogenesis is more efficient to survival, why the process of evolution ends up with humans having to have sex for reproduction?
There are creatures that do not need sex to reproduce, eg. bdelloid rotifer. In fact such asexual creature survives and adapts to the environment better (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7039478.stm).
So, that poses us a question: If sexual activity is not necessary for survival on one hand and not the best way for adaptation on the other, why then humans ended up as sexual creatures? Not only that, why sexual activities for humans are so hedonistically prevalent, as contra with other creatures like tiger and panda?
The best answer that I have is that 'sex' is meant more than reproduction and pleasure for humans...ok ok...let me explain...don't fall asleep yet...
'Sex' necessitates relationship and communal. That means in order for sex to take place, there must be more than 1 party being involved. There must be a relationship. And if sex is not a necessity for survival (as exemplified by bdelloid rotifier), that means such pleasurable relationship is meant more than for the sake of reproduction. And if sex is not helpful for survival, that means such pleasant relationship has more to it than mere pleasure. And such pleasurable and pleasant relationship make us different from other creatures.
Theologians have been saying for centuries that 'sex' is for consummation. Read 'consummation', NOT 'consumption'. The latter is what prostitution is about. The former is a process of fulfilling an ideal. In this case, the ideal of sex. Since neither reproduction and pleasure are the ultimate ideal of sex, then there must be something else to it. And theologians have located the ideal of sex within the sacred mutual relationship between humans that other animals do not share. This sacred mutual relationship is known as 'marriage' to the common.
Hence, the reality of 'sex' points us to the reality of this sacred relationship. That is the ideal. Pleasure and reproduction are secondary. And theologians have proposed further that such consummation actually reflects the fundamental uniqueness of being human. It's the reflection of the communal character of the divine.
OK... you can sleep now :-)
“Six hundred thousand males with families – that would say above three million people – would, as it was remarked a long time ago, have filled up the whole peninsula, and even if the Israelites marched in broad columns would have meant that the advance guard was well into Syria before the rear guard had left Egypt.”(p.151)On the other hand, as pointed out by a sociologist of the antiquity Norman K. Gottwald, the recorded population of the ancient Israelites in the book of Exodus is ridiculously too large:
“The total of more than 600,000 arms-bearing males is ridiculously excessive, since that would yield a total population of at least 2, 500, 000, a figure far larger than the highest estimates for the most populous periods of ancient Israel under the late monarchy.” (1979:51).In view of such doubtful figures of the Exodus, some scholars try to salvage the Bible’s historical reliability by suggesting that the population of the ‘Exodus’ was much fewer than a single journey involved a few million people. Others, like John Bright, suggest that there was no one enormous resettlement but, rather, many tiny ‘exoduses’ occurring through out a span of time. But all these attempts to change the figure of the Exodus in order to salvage the Biblical data does not promote the Bible’s historical reliability. In fact such attempt implies that the OT is inaccurate. Such attempt to salvage the historical reliability of this data undercuts itself.
Although a 13th century BC date is consented by majority of archaeologists and biblical scholars, there are still others (archaeologists in general and Christian apologists in particular) who argue for a 15th century BC date. One such scholar is the famous Christian apologist (right picture) Norman Geisler (see his encyclopaedia’s articles ‘Pharaoh of the Exodus’ and ‘Archaeology, Old Testament’). But such conclusion is untenable. I will extend discussion on this issue under the topic ‘Archaeology and the Conquest data’ below.“Work began on the Jerusalem Temple in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign, and that was 480 years after the Exodus (1 Kings 6.1). Since we know that Solomon died in 930 BCE (14.25-28; “Shishak” = Sheshonq I, now ca. 945-924 BCE), and he reigned 40 years (11.42), he would have ascended the throne in 970 BCE. Thus we add 480 to 966 to get 1446 BCE – the exact date of the Exodus. But such a high date does not accord at all with the archaeological record in Palestine…All authorities today agree that…[the Exodus occurred]…at the end of the Bronze Age, ca. 1250-1150 BCE.”
(Dever, 2003:8; see similar accounts in Provan et al, 2003:131; Finkelstein & Silberman, 2001:56-57; Bright, 2000:133)
A man was sick and tired of going to work every day while his wife stayed home.If after reading this, you still think that this story is implying 'answered prayer is scary', then you might most probably be having the same problem as the man had in the story. His problem is bad hermeneutics. He failed to understand his wife! Hence, the intended title above is 'Bad Hermeneutics is Scary'.
He wanted her to see what he went through so he prayed:
'Dear Lord: I go to work every day and put in 8 hours while my wife merely stays at home. I want her to know what I go through, so please allow her body to switch with mine for a day. Amen.'
God, in his infinite wisdom, granted the man's wish.
The next morning, sure enough, the man awoke as a woman. He arose, cooked breakfast for his mate, awakened the kids, set out their school clothes, fed them breakfast, packed their lunches, drove them to school, came home and picked up the dry cleaning, took it to the cleaners and stopped at the bank to make a deposit, went grocery shopping, then drove home to put away the groceries, paid the bills and balanced the check book. He cleaned the cat's litter box and bathed the dog.
Then it was already 1P.M. And he hurried to make the beds, do the laundry, vacuum, dust, and sweep and mop the kitchen floor. Ran to the school to pick up the kids and got into an argument with them on the way home. Set out milk and cookies and got the kids organized to do their homework, then set up the ironing board and watched TV while he did the ironing.
At 4:30 he began peeling potatoes and washing vegetables for salad, breaded the pork chops and snapped fresh beans for supper. After supper, he cleaned the kitchen, ran the dishwasher, folded laundry, bathed the kids, and put them to bed.
At 9 P.M. he was exhausted and, though his daily chores weren't finished, he went to bed where he was expected to make love, which he managed to get through without complaint.
The next morning, he awoke and immediately knelt by the bed and said:
-'Lord, I don't know what I was thinking. I was so wrong to envy my
wife's being able to stay home all day. Please, oh! oh! please, let us
The Lord, in his infinite wisdom, replied:
'My son, I feel you have learned your lesson and I will be happy to change things back to the way they were. You'll just have to wait nine months though. You got pregnant last night.'
The trouble is that... “inerrancy” has become a shibboleth—a gate-keeping word used to exclude people rather than to draw authentic Christians together for worship and witness...[inerrantists] attribute inerrancy only to the original manuscripts, which do not exist... [In so doing] [t]hey kill the ordinary meaning of the word with the death of a thousand qualifications...I'll go further to say that the belief in the Bible as God's word is not common. I prefer Karl Barth's view that the Bible is a media that bears witness to God's word rather than to say the Bible is God's word.
...If the Bible’s authority depends on its inerrancy but only the original manuscripts were inerrant , then only the original manuscripts were authoritative. The logic is impeccable and irresistible. And if “inerrancy” is compatible with flawed approximations, faulty chronologies, and use of incorrect sources by the biblical authors, it is a meaningless concept...
...I just don’t think... [inerrancy is]... the best word for what we believe. What we all believe that really matters is that the Bible is inspired, authoritative and infallible in all matters of faith and practice. Our difference lies in the fact that I don’t think a word is all that important; what’s important is our common belief in the Bible as God’s word. (emphasis are mine)
the Principal of the Highland Theological College, Adjunct Professor of Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary and a Visiting Professor of Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary in the USA. He also serves as Vice President of the World Reformed Fellowship. (his appointments at all these hyper-Reformed institutions means that he is outrightly Reformed top-down, left-right, in-out!!!)
And seldom there are Reformed theologians who will explore this subject so constructively. If you are still not convinced, go grab it for no other reason that it annoys inerrantists like de Witt!
- reconsiders the place of Scripture in theological systems, and argues that it should be relocated, in order to emphasize that it is an aspect of God's self-revelation and the work of the Holy Spirit.
- revisits the vocabulary used to articulate the doctrine, with some proposals for new terminology.
- examines the important differences between two evangelical positions, 'inerrancy' and 'infallibility', with some further proposals for strengthening an evangelical doctrine.
- addresses two key issues – the relationship between Scripture and our creeds and confessions, and how Scripture is preached in the context of the life of the church.
Do you find it easy to believe?
I don't find it easy to lead a life worthy of my belief. I think that's where the shoe pinches most acutely. I think I can only say I find it natural to believe, or at least I can't imagine living without that belief. It's been part of me for all my adult life and quite a bit of my pre-adult life as well. And to say its part of me, in that sense, doesn't mean it's easy, meaning 'oh well, I never give it a second thought' or 'it's all perfectly obvious', it just means that I can't quite see how else to imagine and inhabit the world. But the difficult thing is living as if I meant it and I would guess that's not just my problem, though it may be more my problem than many other people's problem. Because what I believe is something which puts my life into such a radically truthful perspective, that it does frighten me, as I said on Wednesday – because I wasn't talking just about them but about us/me - when talking about allergy to the truth and the fear that comes with it. So, not easy in the sense of 'it's obvious, no problems', not difficult in the sense that I'm daily struggling to make sense of a really difficult conundrum, but a place where I can't imagine not living, and which is constantly, unsparingly difficult to make real, in my actions and choices.
"I started out as a theologian thinking that it would be fairly straight forward to write large books about Christian doctrine...but I began to realise some of the dangers of writing large books about Christian doctrine is in the risk of supposing that when you have done it you might think that you've done it...maybe one day I will find it in me to write a big book such as I fantasised about when I was a student – but I rather doubt it." - Rowan Williams on writing.
My niece's husband is a trainee Baptist pastor. Jimbo's hip, friendly, and fun to be with.
He's smart and theologically savvy. I like him. He loves Jesus and believes the Bible, and on most moral and doctrinal issues I can affirm what he affirms. We agree on a lot.
But even when we agree, we don't see eye to eye...
...the fundamental differences between Catholicism and Protestantism are not doctrinal or ethical. The different propositional codes of the two heritages are but manifestations, tips of the iceberg, of more fundamentally differing sets of symbols.
The Catholic ethic is "communitarian"; and the Protestant "individualistic" because of the preconscious "organizing" pictures of the two traditions that shape meaning and response to life for members of the respective heritages are different. Catholics and Protestants "see the world differently...
I cannot speak to all the issues that this web page addresses, but I can speak with some measure of authority concerning biblical studies at WTS. I was a student from 1974-1977, where I was captivated by the teaching of many professors, but most notably Ray Dillard who was my mentor and was soon to be my colleague and close friend. I taught Old Testament at the school from 1981 to 1998 with Ray, Bruce Waltke, and Al Groves. I was involved with these friends in the hiring of Peter Enns (as well as Doug Green). I have continued as Visiting Professor of Old Testament since 1998 till the present. I have recently written an article on E. J. Young for the Dictionary of Biblical Interpreters that has taken me back to the earlier history of the school’s instruction in biblical studies.
I have a great love for the school to say the least. I like to say that there is no institution I love as much as Westminster Seminary. However one of the reasons why I left in 1998 was my perception that the seminary was beginning to change from the deeply Reformed but outward facing institution that it was from the time that I first knew it in the 1970’s to a more inward defensive institution. I remember talking to one colleague, for instance, who told me that if I felt the Bible taught something that the Confession did not that I had to side with the Confession. That’s not the Reformed approach to the study of the Bible that I know and love. However it is a perspective that I think has only grown with time
In any case, I have no desire to cast aspersions on anyone. I think everyone is acting out of a good conscience in this. This, however, I can say with a great measure of confidence. The present Old Testament department represents continuity with the past. I work closely with Peter Enns. We are co-editing two Bible dictionaries together and are on a number of editorial boards. I have served as his editor for his wonderful Exodus commentary and have read his important Incarnation and Inspiration three times. In my own speaking and teaching, I have talked to countless people whose faith has been increased and whose confidence in the Bible has been enhanced by reading this book. His thinking is clearly within the Princeton-Westminster tradition. If WTS loses him or anyone else, I worry who might replace them. Will they continue the WTS tradition while still not “shirking the difficult questions”? I know what I think about the matter and I am confident that my dear departed friend Ray Dillard would agree.
I would encourage my former students and others to express their support for the OT department at WTS. Notice I am asking for shows of support. We can do this without casting aspersions on anyone at the seminary. (emphasis mine)
Scripture & Theology is a new e-magazine dedicated to the relationship between biblical interpretation and the articulation of church doctrine. It exists by and for teachers of the church, which is to say, theologian-exegetes and exegetical theologians whether in academics, ministry, or the laity.