No Apologizing

"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." 1 Peter 3:15

Category Archives: The Bible

Resistance Is Futile


Our New God

So here we are again. We have found the next thing that will ultimately run God out of our universe…finally. I came across an article on Yahoo talking about Dan Brown and his latest book. If the name Dan Brown sounds familiar it should because he is the author of The Da Vinci Code. If you are like me, you lost track of Robert Langdon, soon after he cracked the code, but apparently, this is the 5th book in the series. Who knew? Well, my wife tells me that only a few people knew….maybe millions. Whatever.

So, Brown says this book is inspired by the question “Will God survive science?” I’ll respond to that epically awesome problem later on. The title of the article is what caught my attention, collective consciousness to replace God.

I have to admit that my head exploded with different ideas. The easiest is the whole collective consciousness. Anytime I hear the word collective I think of one thing…the Borg. Remember those people/robots from Star Trek who were assimilated into the collective way of thinking? But, if I recall correctly, even the collective had a leader and if the collective will replace God, then who is the new leader? Well according to Brown…WE ARE!

The other piece of my small aneurysm is wondering who will define the collective norm? With the Borg, it was the queen, at least in the movie. But would the collective norms be determined by a small group of individuals or the collective culture? Alas, Brown thinks that artificial intelligence that will define the collective consciousness. But who determines the artificial intelligence? And thus the circle is complete.

There is nothing worse in this world than failed ethics. Humanistic ethics is the most extreme version of this. At its worst, humanistic ethics promotes the idea that each of us defines our good. From an ethics position, this is untenable, and philosophically this argument was destroyed by Aristotle. The humanistic notion of ethics is so wrong that there is no “at its best.” Humanistic ethics lead to Enron. Humanistic ethics lead to the housing crisis. Dare I say…humanistic ethics leads to Harvey Weinstein. Here is an interesting question about collective consciousness. Does anyone question whether the horrid sexual harassment culture in Hollywood, was approved by the collective consciousness of its culture? I don’t. And keep in mind, approval comes in many forms, implicitly or explicitly. Something that pervasive, accepted by the collective powers that be, creating a culture that knowingly allows harassment as part of routine behavior. Sounds like a collective Borg-like mentality to me.

This is a culture that publically denies any form of virtuous ethic, and at the same time demands it from those that violate all sorts of virtue. In other words, they turn their back on the moral law giver (God), publically state that humanity is the ultimate arbiter of ethics, and then fall back on the moral laws given by God when they feel like they have been wronged.

It is astonishing that humanity, after thousands of years, is still trying to replace God with something at their fingertips, or by something they have or create. There is nothing new here, and the Bible is littered with the stories of thousands of “Dan Brown’s” who believed that humanity could replace God. You name it, and mankind has tried it when it comes to replacing God. But, everything comes back to one severe deficiency, humanity cannot get it right, as they are unqualified to be God. You remember that one time when these two folks thought they could be like God and ended up wrecking everything? Yeah, how did that work out for them?

As to the question of whether God can survive science. Well, considering that God has managed to survive the root science that has allowed humanity to develop the current science, somehow I think he will manage just fine. Besides, do you know how many major scientific discoveries there have been since the 4th century BC? About 190. That is equal to about one significant scientific discovery every 11 years. And through it all God has been magnified not diminished.

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Are Christians Sociopaths?


Are Christians, particularly Christians in America, sociopathic?

What started as an off the cuff remark I made during a recent sermon at my Church (Legacy Church, in Kansas City, MO) has begun to legitimately haunt me (you can hear the sermon here)…

Christian… Sociopath… These are two words that on the surface seem completely incompatible.  Acts 11:26 tells us that the term “Christian” was first used of disciples in the Antioch church.  This was initially used as an insult in that people were saying they were “little Christs”.  In other words, they were just like Jesus, who because of His great love for people, voluntarily died to pay for the sins of the world. On the other hand – the dictionary defines sociopath as “a person with a psychopathic personality whose behavior is antisocial, often criminal, and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience.” Another says that “Sociopaths are interested only in their personal needs and desires, without concern for the effects of their behavior on others.”

How can someone who is living a life that is reminiscent of a man whose critics admit was at least a good person and moral teacher exhibit behavior or attitudes that are patently selfish and apathetic to others? However, in spite of the apparent contradiction, I think if we are truly honest with ourselves, the answer is closer to “yes” than any of us who call ourselves a Christian would like to admit… And it tears me up inside… Let me allow this clip from Atheist Magician and Comedian Penn Jillette to begin to explain what I mean:

“How much do you have to hate someone to believe everlasting life is possible and not tell them that?” There is the rub… Way too many “Christians” fall in a daily routine and are comfortable to coast through life without a broken heart for their friends and family who, if what we believe is really true, are destined for an eternity without God… Well… to be honest that is the essence of selfishly living life “without concern for the effects of their behavior [or lack thereof] on others”, isn’t it???

We certainly shouldn’t be comfortable with it… But sadly I think that may just be the problem… our comfort.  Because we are relatively comfortable, especially in comparison to most of the rest of the world, we just get into auto pilot and unintentionally slip into apathy.  It’s not a conscious thing, but it occurs anyway… and it’s tragic.

Penn said “There comes a point where I tackle you… and this is more important than that.” Because people’s eternities are so important, our “social conscience” should remind us that we have a “moral responsibility” to love those around us enough to take the risk of offending them or losing a friendship to in a sense “tackle” them by sharing the truth about Jesus

Let’s pray to God for forgiveness for our sociopathic tendencies and begin to live a life that actually reflects our name-sake, Jesus… and refuse to scoot through life uncaring and unaffected by the many people we know who do not yet have a relationship with Him.

The Bible…Review 3


So…before I get to what everyone is talking about this week let me give my quick two second review of this last weeks episode.  Once again, I feel like they missed a big opportunity by skipping two critical points in the Bible.  For anyone who has read this blog you would see that I am a big advocate of the idea that the Old Testament points to Jesus.  The Bible missed on a huge opportunity to demonstrate this by skipping over the book of Isaiah and his prophecy of the suffering servant.  Additionally, did anyone else notice that they tried to pass off the prophecy of Jesus onto Daniel?  For some reason that stuck out with me.  It would appear that the producers of the Bible wanted to get into the whole prophecy thing but then gave the viewers the cheap and watered down version.  They passed on Daniel’s 70 7’s prophecy which is an incredible prophecy that was fulfilled to the day!  Again…here they can demonstrate the absolute power of God, and pass on it.

Oh and by the way…for a more realistic look at the 3 wisemen READ THIS POST.  I am going to go out on a limb here and say that the producers…probably didn’t do their homework.

And now to the contreversy of the week…

Well...it is a little odd to say the least.

Well…it is a little odd to say the least.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I don’t know if this is intentional.  It’s hard to believe that the producers of the show were sitting in a room saying…”He doesn’t look enough like Obama.”  Look there is no way that Obama is the anti-christ.  If you have read my posts you know where I stand on both the men pictured above.  But I will have to say…that the likeness is…well…funny.

The Bible Review 2….The Incredible Hulk and Psycho Saul


bible-episode-2-saul-AWell I finally got done watching the second part of the Bible.  Again, there were a lot of shortcuts.  The trend that I am noticing in this series so far is that they are focusing on popular stories and developing them based on pre-conceived notions or misconceptions surrounding those.  We saw this in full display  for the episode  on Sunday.

So with Samson, we get to see a chopped down version (pardon the pun).  There was so much that they left out that it is hard for me to keep track of what they kept and what they didn’t.  I think it is probably better to focus on the inaccuracies of what they presented.

  • The men that Samson killed with the jawbone of the Donkey, wasn’t the mere 20 the movie saw…it was closer to 1,000.  That is quite a big difference.
  • Samson met Delilah in Gaza…not just after the battle with 1,000.
  • Samson, didn’t just hand over the secret to his strength.  As a matter of fact, Delilah badgers the poor man for a long while and Samson keeps deceiving her, until she lays a guilt trip on him and he finally caves.
  • Once his hair was cut (as in bald) his eyes were gouged, and he was sent to a prison.
  • The final shindig that Samson was at….Samson was there so that the Philistines could rub his nose in it.  They were celebrating Samson being handed over to them.  This was a huge party
  • So Samson breaks the pillars, and kills more people in that moment than he had killed in his entire lifetime.  That’s a lot of people.

The story of David in the Bible is epic.  However, they managed to get several key things wrong in regards to David, which frankly there was no need to get wrong.

  • David was anointed King…He was chosen by Samuel from 7 brothers.  This is a great picture.  If you can imagine Cinderella for men.  This is the closest thing one could use to describe this scene.  Only God had the glass slipper and only God knew who it would fit.  So all of David’s brothers get paraded in front of Samuel.  Samuel looks at Jesse and says this isn’t it,  where is your other son?.  David appears and is anointed by Samuel in front of his family.  At the time of the anointing…the Holy Spirit rushed upon David.  Once again…they really missed an opportunity here, and Honestly I would rather have them spent more time on David, than spending any time on Samson at all.
  • The battle between David and Goliath took place in a major valley (Elah).  The show portrayed it as being just a small stretch with an army on each side and of a couple of people on each side.  This was really horribly depicted. They also missed some key elements that would have been incredibly illustrating of this picture.  Like David putting on Saul’s armor and then taking it off.  What is most compelling that was missed…was the dialogue before the fight.  Here is how it really was, tell me if this isn’t more compelling…
  • Goliath: You think I am some sort of Dog coming at me with sticks?
  • Pause
  • Goliath: Well come on then…I’ll feed you to the birds and the dogs.
  • David:  You got a spear, a sword and a javelin.  Big deal.  I’ve got God.  And today, Goliath….not only is He going to deliver you to me, but after I kill you…I am going to cut off your head and then let the birds and dogs feed off of you.

So… Goliath goes charging, but his sword is sheathed, David goes charging and sets himself.  David draws a rock, and hits Goliath so hard that the rock sinks into his head (as opposed to bouncing off like a tennis ball).  David ran and stood over Goliath.  He drew Goliaths sword out of its sheath, and cut his head off.  The show was okay for this story from that point on.

But they also got another major component wrong or skipped other major components.  At the end of the show David was dancing around in his “kilt”.  The show infers that it is the ark, and indeed it was.  This is the famous scripture that Ren McCormick uses in Footloose where David sings and dance before the Lord with all his might.

The show then did a little fore shadowing as I think we see Bathsheba at the end ( shut it off with about 10 minutes left).  They somehow managed to skip his covenant with God…which is a pretty big deal, and all of his victories as king.

Again…I understand that David’s story is EPIC, but at the very least let’s get it right on what you decide to show.

The Bible….review #1


I am about half way through the first show.

I did find where the producers were interviewed on Bill O’Reilly.  They describe themselves as being devout Christians.  They talkedabout how they wanted to create a show that would depict the Bible as is… so how are they doing?

Well…The first major thing of note Lot and Sodom.

Okay so the show depicts this event as follows:  the two angels go to Sodom, and are apparently assaulted and wind up at Lots house.  Lot then allows the angels into the house where he holds off the crowd outside.  Lot tells the crowd that they (angels) are his guests and that he will not let them take them.  Well that didn’t please them so the angels (one of which was a Samurai master) went out and cut a pathway out of the city.

Ninja angel

 

What really happened?

Lot is sitting in the gateway to Sodom.  The two angels walk up, and apparently Lot recognizes them and refers to them as lords.  Lot invites them to his humble abode, but the angels refuse wanting to spend the night in the square.  Lot insists and finally the angels give way to Lot.  Now, while the conversation was going on someone or a group of people noticed the angels.  Lot leads the angels back to his house and cooks a meal.  Meanwhile a gang forms outside of Lots doors and they are demanding the two angels….to have sex with them.  Lot, protecting his guests offers his daughters to them.  That was unacceptable to this gang, and they threatened to hurt Lot and pressed forward to the door.  The angels pulled Lot back, struck the gang with blindness, and lead them out of the city.

I think the show really missed an opportunity with this.  Can you think of this scene where Lot chooses to protect the servants of God by giving his own daughters over to this gang of miscreants?  What a powerful message of sacrifice   This was the reason he was saved out of the city.   Also….what a way to cheapen everything that the show accomplished in a 2 minute segment.  A Samurai ..really?  Of everything that was in the show this will be the one thing remembered.  No one will be talking about the imagery of Noah’s arc or the faith of Abraham, or the depiction of Egypt (which was incredible)…but every is talking about ninja angels….

The Bible on History Channel


So a new series is beginning on the History Channel tonight.  This series will be acting out the Bible and is creatively called….”The Bible”.  Reminds me of…”Allow myself to introduce….myself”.

the-bible-hero-v5-H


 

 

Anyway…I will be tuning in with a skeptical eye of course because cable channels like the History Channel tend to approach topics related Christianity from a secular perspective and tend to get many facts wrong or write it from the perspective that it is a fairly tale.

I will do my best to post my opinion of this show as it goes along.  I will have to say that I have pretty low expectations.  We shall see.

Here is a link to the show in case you haven’t heard of it.

Be sure to grab your Bible….get comfortable and hopefully enjoy!

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