All that followers of Christ are to be and do rightly flows from God's intentions for human life together, and the fullest revelation of that comes via the life of Christ. The call to imitate Christ is an expression of this reality. Our blog explores the implications of imitating Christ for all aspects of human existence.
Why is it that some folks are so fascinated with apocalyptic literature? Historically, one could probably make a pretty good case for the claim that little in Scripture is read more poorly than this particular genre. In the first place, there is almost no awareness of the basis for the rise of apocalyptic in American christianity, and the consequence seems to be that folks believe it should be read literally. Well, not quite literally. How many of you have heard sermons where various specious claims are raised in attempt to identify the anti-christ? I am embarrassed to admit how many different persons I have heard so identified. Further, the powerful, often militaristic, tone of apocalyptic so easily distracts folks from the manner in which Jesus lived his life and the degree to which he went in order to show that God overcomes evil through suffering. So, following Jesus seems to become very much secondary to guessing when the end of the world is going to come or how deep the blood will really be during the last battle, etc, etc. Martin Luther once commented of Revelation that he did not find it very revealing. In fact, as I recall, he was very much in favor of pitching it along with the deutero-canonical books (someone correct me if I am remembering this incorrectly). But, that just brings me back to the first question: what is it that so fascinates some about this genre? Is it the "covert" nature of the language that draws folks into trying to figure out the puzzle? Is it the militaristic tone that allows them to ignore the non-violence of Jesus? At the end of the day, I wonder if it isn't just old fashioned "power games." In other words, if you view yourself as a victim who needs to be vindicated by God, vindicated in a way that "blows away" all those "ungodly enemies," then this book packs a lot of promise. But, to follow this rabbit trail down to a very bad theology is, in the end, to give up the good news--the good news that Jesus has already overcome evil, not by replicating it, but rather by ending it by letting it do its worst to him. When we see the resurrection as God's "yes" to the Cross, the door opens to genuinely see just how "upside down" the kingdom is when compared to our usual way of doing things. The seduction of violence is powerful, isn't it? The promise that with the wiping out of all our enemies, we will have peace is very tempting. When one has the choice between being the abused or the abuser, how few choose to imitate Jesus!!
We are seeing a lot of commentary of late about how the last election resulted from conservatives having left their conservative principles. Andrew Sullivan makes a similar point in his book on reclaiming the soul of conservatism. In this article, Greenwald explores these claims as he questions whether or not we are seeing a "desertion of conservative principles," r if we are really just seeing how conservative principles work out in the real world. I leave it for you to decide, but thought the piece worth review. We'll see what Andrew has to say in response.
If you can access this CGI from YouTube, you should check it out. I have always taken nuclear weapons to constitute fundamentally immoral weapons that cannot be morally used under any conditions. This film begins to get at some of the reasons, and remember, this bomb was far less destructive than current ones.
The list of dirty tricks this president is willing engage in so as to retain or expand his control seems endless. Check this one out. The president is making sure that rules that come out of regulatory agencies are controlled by a political appointee. Is it any surprise who loves this legislation? The idea, from the bible on, that suggests we must put the care of the least first is consistently turned on its head by this hero of too many contemporary evangelicals.
I had mentioned, some time ago, that I found John McCain to be an independent thinker, and while I did not agree with him on all his positions, I thought I might be able to support him (of course, additional research might have made that untenable). However, in the last 6 months, he seems to have become an entirely different person--hardly recognizable to those who respected his tough, maverick stance. Well, people seem to have noticed.
Okay, so it is an oxymoron to put both "wisdom" and "bill kristol" in the same phrase, but I had my tongue in my cheek when I did it. Bill also has amazing powers of perception. Check out this quote, listed by Andrew. Makes you wonder, yet again, why anyone still puts this guy (Bill, that is) on tv.