Monthly Archive: March 2012

No day of rest…

Sometimes it is really busy. That business may not be you: today I am acting as a ferry for son two because it is final rehearsals. The play starts tomorrow night, ie Sunday.

And the clinical week was busy. Some weeks you do not get much academic work done: this was one of those weeks.

So… take a deep breath and look at the lectionary.


Mark 10:46-52

46They came to Jericho. As he and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. 47When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 49Jesus stood still and said, “Call him here.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart; get up, he is calling you.” 50So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. 51Then Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man said to him, “My teacher, let me see again.” 52Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.

II Corinthians 4:16-18

16So we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. 17For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, 18because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal.

There are some periods in your life when you are a taxi and cook. You are dealing with the logistics of teenagers. You do not have time for yourself. You are busy. Like I am doing today, you take literally ten to fifteen minutes to sit down and read… and today it is very mechanical, because I have a mental clock ticking in my head.

But… that period ends. Your children grow. Our children are not there for us: we are loaned them from God to raise them and then let them go. They have their own calling, and it is not ours. And then we will have time. That is the season of contemplation and prayer: but it is also the season when our outer nature is wasting away.

And in the season of children, you are busy. However, I can see that season finishing, and then I will be grieving for the business of this time. Paul tells us to look to the eternal.

The world tells us to look for youth and perfection where things are temporary. We cannot be perfect but in Christ, and he will make us so. Look instead to him.

Put away shameful games.

I am afraid there is nothing witty or apropos that I can link to about today’s reading. I was trying to find a comment in TC’s thread that has now split
when someone said women were not smart, but they were cunning, because cunning is all they have. I guess by that they meant manipulative.
It feels at times that we are talking to a brick wall… which is something I commented on over at Dalrocks

Johnathon said something useful

I have known very few people who were actually, genuinely, “stupid” according to the dictionary definition of the term (“characterized by or proceeding from mental dullness”). What I have seen are many people who make decisions that ultimately prove harmful to themselves because they are focused on either (a) the short-term, or (b) their own selfish desires. I have seen brilliant techniques used to achieve very selfish ends that, ultimately, destroyed the person. But in the short term they got exactly what they wanted, and they got it using very clever means.

Now there is a very good biblical term for such people. They are called fools, and there is a book in the Bible that tells us how to handle them. Called Proverbs.
And one of the core teachings in proverbs is that arguing with fools is a vexation and tedious. Part of the job of the leadership of any congregation is to weed fools out. You cannot afford them leading: they have no wisdom and no discretion.
They have to be left in the consequences of their foolishness. You cannot reason with them, and they will despise correction. Which is why the rod was made for them: the only things they understand are external controls. Like Jail.

Now, today, Paul is talking about remaining in his ministry. And putting away shameful games.

2 Corinthians 4:1-12

1Therefore, since it is by God’s mercy that we are engaged in this ministry, we do not lose heart. 2We have renounced the shameful things that one hides; we refuse to practise cunning or to falsify God’s word; but by the open statement of the truth we commend ourselves to the conscience of everyone in the sight of God. 3And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your slaves for Jesus’ sake. 6For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness”, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

7But we have this treasure in clay jars, so that it may be made clear that this extraordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us. 8We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies. 11For while we live, we are always being given up to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus may be made visible in our mortal flesh. 12So death is at work in us, but life in you.

When Paul talks about renouncing shameful things he is talking about the sins that beset us.

But he is also talking about refusing to practice cunning. The shameful games of a fool: blaming others, manipulating their words, emotional meltdowns (the offendarii), playing the victim, not being able to distinguish what is wise from that which feels good.

A fair amount of the time in any worthwhile endeavour you are just doing it. THere is no immediate reward. You are grinding away. The training goes on, you fail as often as you succeed, but you stick at it. You put a lot of effort in for little visible gain. Then it seems to all fall together.

But that is because you have put the effort in. You have set the foundations square and true. You have spent time communing with the numbers, visualized them, done the analysis and then rechecked it, revised your review… then the draft comes. We should not give up on what is good.

We need, instead, to stop looking for shortcuts, put away the shameful games of manipulation and false cries of righteousness, and accept that this life invlves a certain quantity of effort.

A somewhat musical domestic post.

Music is the main theme of this week in Casa Pukeko.  Son two is cheerfully going to school in jeans rather than his uniform because the school is rehearsing Sweeney Todd. And he was “Army volunteered” into the choir — which comes from him doing music all year, playing viola and piano, and having good relative pitch — which got his picture in the paper today as a visiting tenor met with members of Dunedin School Choirs.

The school takes the choirs seriously. Son two was a new pupil last year and his voice was breaking. He has potential, and the choirmistress (who also runs the better high church choir — the Presbyterian one) scours the schools. This is what the senoir choir could do last year.

And these are kids from the non arty school which is better known for its sport team.

Mistrust wealth: mistrust power.

One of the contradictory things in the Bible is that those with resources are more likely to go to perdition. The poor are more generous — to charities, in New Zealand, at least.

Now: the issue of great wealth has to be considered. By the standards of the ancient world, almost everyone in the West is wealthy. And… like the rich elite throughout history. the west tends to look to their own pleasures, not thinking of the future generations, or even starting a future generations.

Mark 10:17-31

17As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 18Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. 19You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honor your father and mother.’” 20He said to him, “Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth.” 21Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, “You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” 22When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.

23Then Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” 24And the disciples were perplexed at these words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” 26They were greatly astounded and said to one another, “Then who can be saved?” 27Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God all things are possible.”

28Peter began to say to him, “Look, we have left everything and followed you.” 29Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, 30who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age – houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields with persecutions – and in the age to come eternal life. 31But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.”

Now, the aim of the Christian walk is to glorify God, and by walking with God become closer to him. The path of hedonism — pushed by the elite since the sexual revolution (which started when I was in the primers at primary school) has leads to the death of society, as Spengler notes,

Whether it is due to disgust at the misery of their circumstances, or the side-effect of drugs intended to dull the misery of their circumstances, women are abandoning sexuality.

When human beings cease to desire each other physically, it is because they have ceased to desire each other at all. The things that motivate human beings to unite in intimate and permanent union, procreating and acculturating another generation, give way to the pure exercise of ego. The typical American household no longer harbors a family but a person living alone. As Eric Klinenberg reports in his much-commented new book Going Solo, 28% of all American households now contain a single person, compared to just 9% in 1950.

Klinenberg, to be sure, thinks this is wonderful; his typical “Singleton” lives in Manhattan, hangs out at the local sushi bar and coffee shop, swims in a rich cultural current, and devotes himself to the grand diversion of the age, namely “self-realization”, which is easier to pursue in the absence of another self that might make competing demands.

In another 20 years or so, though, the self-sufficient singles of American cities will emulate the kodokushi (“lonely death”) victims of Japan, another much-commented 21st-century phenomenon.

It is only by giving up what we grow. Power, wealth, resources — used for others. Not grasping tightly to our pensions — governments still steal them in times of crisis. We need to dethrone bonking. And money. Look at the balance that Alte made in her comment.

We take breaks in order to read books, write higher-quality articles, make administrative changes, and… er… minister to our husbands. I’m only so prolific this week because my hubby’s gone. We’ve already got 73 articles in progress right now, so it’s not like we’re not writing while we’re on break.

It just helps us get our mojo back. Sometimes we run out of steam and need a breather from the immediacy of blogging. I was also trying to restart my prayer life, which had sort of collapsed for a while there, and that’s the part of Lent that has been going rather well.

We can enjoy these things, for we no longer worship them. If we worship them, they will destroy us.

Lives not tweets.

Well. the UK courts think they can control Twitter. Well, at least defamatory speech. From the Auckland Pravda

Tweeters have been warned to be much more cautious about what they send into cyberspace after Chris Cairns’ precedent-setting victory.

And despite a media law expert saying he was always going to win, Cairns has expressed his relief that the verdict came out in his favour.

Cairns’ case against Indian businessman Lalit Modi – who accused the cricketer of match-fixing on Twitter in 2010 – was the first defamation trial that stemmed from the global social networking phenomenon.

In the meantime, two grumpy sons are looking at their timetables. They have a three day week: yesterday was a teacher only day. Son two has rehearsals for the school play all week, and doctors appointments. The usual week, compressed into three days.

Onto todays reading.

2 Corinthians 3:1-6

1Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Surely we do not need, as some do, letters of recommendation to you or from you, do we? 2You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all; 3and you show that you are a letter of Christ, prepared by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.

4Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. 5Not that we are competent of ourselves to claim anything as coming from us; our competence is from God, 6who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant,

In the end, the social media is a form of speech. And in all forms of speech we have to show some forms of care. It is fairly easy to blog badly (I have done enough of this over time) or comment unwisely. It is even easier to tweet sarcastically — brevity is a tool for sarcasm.

Paul argues that his reference, his letter of introduction, his social media reputation — is the lives of the people he has influenced, not the words he has written. And this is correct.

About seven or so  years ago the minister who ran the church I grew up in died. He had been a missionary in the Sudan for twenty years and then served in the Presbyterian church until he retired in the late 1970s and he then lived to see the new century. At his funeral, the church overflowed. People talked about a lifetime of witnessing and service in many roles and functions, paid and unpaid.  He demonstrated that his life was written in people.

He wrote no books that I know of. Instead, he served, and he now has his reward. The words we write have power and consequences, as Chris Cairns has just demonstrated. However, the lives we influence are a witness to our ministry and calling.

Signs for the world… and food for believers.

One of the ongoing tensions among Protestants, particularly nonliturgical protestants, is to balance the need to witness to those outside of taith and to build up those who are of faith. Some churches turn into mini theological colleges where the building up of the fellowship takes priority and  the evangelical task is left aside. Others become seeker friendly — but never teach on spiritual discipline, or development, or at any depth.

Paul was dealing here with a bunch of people who act remarkably like modern Pentecostals. They were moving from order to disroder. They were not allowing people to understand what was going on. And… like Pentecostals… they were at risk of being seen as mad.

1 Corinthians 14:20-33a

20Brothers and sisters, do not be children in your thinking; rather, be infants in evil, but in thinking be adults. 21In the law it is written, “By people of strange tongues and by the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people; yet even then they will not listen to me,” says the Lord. 22Tongues, then, are a sign not for believers but for unbelievers, while prophecy is not for unbelievers but for believers. 23If, therefore, the whole church comes together and all speak in tongues, and outsiders or unbelievers enter, will they not say that you are out of your mind? 24But if all prophesy, an unbeliever or outsider who enters is reproved by all and called to account by all. 25After the secrets of the unbeliever’s heart are disclosed, that person will bow down before God and worship him, declaring, “God is really among you.”

26What should be done then, my friends? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up. 27If anyone speaks in a tongue, let there be only two or at most three, and each in turn; and let one interpret. 28But if there is no one to interpret, let them be silent in church and speak to themselves and to God. 29Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others weigh what is said. 30If a revelation is made to someone else sitting nearby, let the first person be silent. 31For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all be encouraged. 32And the spirits of prophets are subject to the prophets, 33for God is a God not of disorder but of peace.

Now, I have no problem with liturgy. Liturgy forces us to read through the bible because the texts are set: in fact I blog using a liturgical system. I also have no problem with free worship.  I have attended high church Anglicans and Presbyterian churches. I have also attended a Brethern church, where the tradition is to have no schedule.

One of the things to watch for is a sense of disorder. We can be decived that we have a word, or a thought… when we are expressing instead our own desires and wants. The spirit sent from God is not one of disorder on against the Law. Instead it is of peace, and good order. Which leads to a test” if we have no order in our services we are probably in error.

In addition, we are told to test the spirits. The leadership of the church needs to guard who speaks carefully. Locally, for instance, we do not dumb down our services. We assume a certain level of education — and then parents have to spend time discussing with tehir children what this means.  Others will act differently — but there needs to be a sense of order.

Here the reformed practice of sticking quite closely to the text, and not speculating overmuch can help. I find that my liberal friends tend to project their :right on” thouoghts into areas where scripture is silent. At the same time, I have seen Pentecostals allow “prophecy” that is in in accordance with scripture.

We need to test everything. And we need to remind ourselves that God expects us to do this, in worship and in life.

Food, software, politics and Kipling.

Incendiary Insight. A little cynical. He misses the fact that most of the people he is talking about are the sons of Mary

Every single group in this country outside of white, right-leaning Christian men wants to win. What do I mean by that? They take their fight seriously, they’re willing to protest, riot, make others lives uncomfortable, loudly announce their goals, and demand laws that support their beliefs be passed without hesitation. The most that Christians will do is send in angry letters to….somebody. Republicans will promise to vote for whoever the Republican nominee is, and men will continue going to work and upholding a system that does not believe it needs them. One side fought for victory, another didn’t fight at all.

Feminists hysterically emote and rage like the good little cultural Marxists that they are, while the Men’s Rights Movement angrily blogs about their divorce experiences; young men shun marriage in favor of hook-ups, high-definition porn, video games, and getting stupid drunk on the weekends. The modus operandi for white, right-leaning Christian men nowadays is basically to react to changes of society, not to influence or cause certain changes. When was the last time a large number of men got to together and demanded that a law be passed? Yet, not a day goes by where we can turn on the news and not see some left-wing retard demanding some new law that enriches herself or her friends.

Ah. This quote expresses some of the issues that keep coming up. We are listening to the whiners and not to those who fix things. There is a certain nobility in being one of the workers. Those who know their Kipling

They do not preach that their God will rouse them a
little before the nuts work loose.
They do not teach that His Pity allows them to drop
their job when they dam’-well choose.

And in a rational society, the productive people are listened to, and the drones ignored.

While we are thinking of production tools, my mate Grant has a new version of Sofa Statistics up. This is one of the simplest cross platform analysis tools out there for doing basic analysis, and I recommend it as a replacement for excel/gnumeric and SPSS. If you need to program, use Rkward as a frontend for R.

On the economic front, the stockmarket has rallied, but this has to be looked at with caution. In the US, $270 billion of student loans are delinquent. Greek bonds are paying 22c to the dollar. The market still works –Nikon has increased the price of it’s newest camera in the UK to ration demand for it –but that is a toy for photogs. For those on the margins, the price of bread is more important.

On that subject, good bread is expensive. But flour is cheap, and this recipe is reliable.You need to read the article and then follow the recipe. Mark Bitman is a one of the few American food writers worth following, because he keeps it simple and fresh.

Recipe: No-Knead Bread

Adapted from Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery
Time: About 1½ hours plus 14 to 20 hours’ rising

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed.

1. In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.

2. Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.

3. Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

4. At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.

Yield: One 1½-pound loaf.

Dinner was fresh bread (not done this way: I kneaded a loaf in the conventional manner) and cheese. You can also form the bread into standard tins and bake it that way. I find about 170 Celsius works on my oven (I don’t think in Fahrenheit).

Otago Anniversary…

Today is Otago Anniversary Day. The Province of Otago existed from 1853 to 1876: I have a soft spot for the constitution of that time, with its limited franchise, federal structure, and provision for traditional tribal law. I also have a soft spot for the imperial structure of the time. However, parliament had the ability to amend it. Which it did. Repeatedly.To the Nations’ detriment: the original capital was in Auckland (which is volcanic) but it was moved to Wellington (which sits on a very active fault line).

Idiots. The only rational places for the capital and archives are not on fault lines but extinct volcanoes — Auckland and Dunedin.

Looking around the structure of or society today, the Victorian colonists would be horrified. So would the Maori: by 1853 the bulk of them were Christian,, and all would be reading on this day… the nature of our society is now as broken as we would be after an earthquake. We cannot paper this up.

So when I consider the text today, I am stymied.

Psalm 119:73

Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me understanding that I may learn your commandments.

Today we neither acknowledge that we were made and fashioned by God, nor that the child in the womb is a creation of God and of great value, or that the commandments of God are true and righteous.

This leaves us in a great quandary. To stand, to be faithful, we have to be countercultural. And this will lead to opposition. For we do not play by the rules of this world.

Mark 9:30-41

30They went on from there and passed through Galilee. He did not want anyone to know it; 31for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, “The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.” 32But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him.

33Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” 34But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest. 35He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.” 36Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, 37“Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”

38John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he was not following us.” 39But Jesus said, “Do not stop him; for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. 40Whoever is not against us is for us. 41For truly I tell you, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because you bear the name of Christ will by no means lose the reward.”

Hmmm. Firstly, down time is important. There were many cripples. There are many poor. But Jesus needed to teach his disciples. He retreated from the public for a season.

Secondly, there is no power but for service. In Christ, we do not honour those who are great, but those who are faithful with those things that are small.  We should not pursue success — as measured in turnover, dividends, share price, assets and political power — but faithfulness and service.   If we concentrate on prayer, worship and faithfulness, then we may he able to keep the commandments. And thus seeking his kingdom and his righteousness, other things will be added to us.

Finally, we should not be exclusive. This is an error of those who think too much. If someone who is clearly in error does good in Christ’s name, we should help them. Perhaps the spirit is working with them more powerfully than us. Perhaps we are being sent there to help them.

What does this mean for here? Well, this is not a site for those necessarily who live in my city, province or nation. Nor for the reformed (there are far more erudite theologians for that). It means that I allow posts with errors.

__________

PS.  Yes, I was born and raised in Auckland, and now live in Dunedin. I’m biased. So?

 

The consequences of the feminist revolution… Part 0.

This morning in Kirk I sat next to one of my colleagues and her daughter. The daughter was talking about a local keg party that had got out of control last night and how she had to rescue one of her friends from the mess — the police were called — at 5 am. And we talked about how we are dealing with young people — often in their early teens — who are acting in dangerous ways, and seem to be without a conscience. That their families have no power to control them and they are making choices that are destroying their prospects later.

Being a teenager in New Zealand is a challenge. Our qualification system is such that you have to work fairly steadily over three years to obtain enough points to get into a competitive university or training programme. Son two, in his second year at high school (year 10, grade 9) is already doing “internals” that count toward that system, and son one (year 12, grade 11) is in the middle of this.

My friend was rostered to pray for others. She began praying for the recent victims of events in New Zealand. She then broke down and weeping, prayed for these young people who were not being protected by the adults around them who were not at all grown up.

I have just come back from a fairly long drive with son one.  We went up to a the Moeraki Boulders — and during this we discussed what is happening. During this, I reflected on a few observations I have made, or my parents have made.

  1. In the early 1970s New Zealand revised our social welfare system. We bought in a domestic purposes benefit, removed the requirement that a person be sober and of good characther to recieve a benefit, and increased the amount. My mother recalls one of the Pacific Island women in the church saying “This should not happen, for it will destroy our society”. I now see women whose entire aim in life is to have a child and be on the benefit, perpetuating the cycle of deprivation their mother lived. They see this as normal.
  2. We have told girls they can do anything. We have told them that they are wonderful. We have been concerned about their self esteem. We have rewarded them by scholarships and support if they enter fields. We have told them they are equal with men… and they have believed us. However, women are smaller, weaker, cannot metabolize substances as fast as men… and, because we have sheltered women from the consequences of their actions, they are hurt, angry and fragile when (not if) they are held accountable for their behaviour.
  3. Conversely, we have told young men that they are evil, violent, sexually oppressive, and disposable. A number of women call the husband (they have divorced) “the sperm donor”.  This has led to men either treating women as friends with benefits, or withdrawing from the dating scene, and instead watching cautiously trying to ascertain what the risk to themselves will be from committing to this person. I said commitment not marriage: in New Zealand if you live with a person for three years or have a child by them your partner now has 50% of what you own. There is no need for paperwork. Marriage and civil unions formalize what will be your legal status.
  4. As are result we have young women running wild, young men who have disaffiliated themselves from our society… and a minority who stick to the old ways.

Me, I mourn the loss of my marriage. I like traditional marriage. I like the idea of death til us part.  I don’t like bars, I don’ t like partying. I like reading, thinking, taking photos, playing music and sharing things. I am, in the terms of the manosphere, a classic beta geek. My sons are the same.

And my advice to all such betas is to leave the nightclub scene and go to the library. Find a girl doing a STEM subject, and woo her. Get involved in a tradtional church. And recreate an old fashioned home.

The society we are told about — the post modern feminist utopia — is destructive. It is time to remove ourselves, and let it go to perdition.

Jesus was not merely a good man.

Many of the more liberal persuasion see Jesus as a good teacher: the equivelant of a prophet, a philosopher and a guru.  Not the case. He claimed to be God.

And the Pharisees called him crazy.

John 8:46-59

46Which of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? 47Whoever is from God hears the words of God. The reason you do not hear them is that you are not from God.”

48The Jews answered him, “Are we not right in saying that you are a Samaritan and have a demon?” 49Jesus answered, “I do not have a demon; but I honor my Father, and you dishonor me. 50Yet I do not seek my own glory; there is one who seeks it and he is the judge. 51Very truly, I tell you, whoever keeps my word will never see death.” 52The Jews said to him, “Now we know that you have a demon. Abraham died, and so did the prophets; yet you say, ‘Whoever keeps my word will never taste death.’ 53Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? The prophets also died. Who do you claim to be?” 54Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father who glorifies me, he of whom you say, ‘He is our God,’ 55though you do not know him. But I know him; if I would say that I do not know him, I would be a liar like you. But I do know him and I keep his word. 56Your ancestor Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day; he saw it and was glad.” 57Then the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” 58Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, before Abraham was, I am.59So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple.

Now, the consequence of this conversation was that the Pharisees were going to stone him (throw rocks at him until he died) on  the spot.

You cannot get away with just saying Jesus was a good man. To do that, you have to edit his very words. In that case, you are not talking about Jesus, but your image of Jesus.  You either have to say he was mad, possessed, or whom he said he was.

Because he clearly claims here to be God. I am in Hebrew — is the name God gave himself. The name now observant Jew will write. Out of respect.

Jesus is not tame. He is not respectful of traditions. He is not tame. And he trampled all over the models of God and the Law that the Pharisees had.

So he… is not merely a good man. He is either more of this, or he is at best mad, and at worse evil. His claim is that if you know him, you will know he is God.

 

PS. Yes, I know this an argument from C S Lewis.


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