#1. The Jesus Wife Fragment…Again— http://alinsuciu.com/2014/04/24/christian-askeland-finds-the-smoking-gun/
This fragment is hitting the news again and that link argues against the validity of the fragment. Here is another link to more details of the story
Here are the keys to this issue:
1. Even if it is not a forgery this fragment does not shed any light on Jesus or his life.
2. The words spoken by the person named Jesus in that fragment are not spoken by the true Jesus.
3. The fragment was not written by someone who knew or followed Jesus.
4. Too much information is missing and there is no way to corroborate its contents.
An ancient document or fragment discovered does not mean its contents automatically speak the truth. Frauds, liars, enemies of Christ existed in the ancient world just like they do today.
#2. Translating Badly On Purpose— http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/2014/04/selective-rejection-of-evidence.html
I said to myself concerning humans, “God has surely tested them in order for them to see that they are but animals.”
A number of translations insert a word such as “like” to avoid the meaning of the Hebrew text being conveyed to readers.
If you have ever taken any language courses one of the first things you learn in doing translation work is that you cannot do a literal translation and have the words make sense in the target language.
Many secular corporations have found this out the hard way and have lost money because of their poor translation habits. Now here McGrath is ignoring the rule of translation where the translator is allowed to insert words to make the translation coherent.
He is translating badly on purpose in order to attack those who reject any form of evolution. It is another act of desperation on his part. We know that God would not call humans animals in 1 verse alone while every other verse regarding God’s description of humans makes them higher than the animals and not descendent from them.
In fact, if McGrath is going to use scripture to prove his evolutionary views then he needs to be honest and admit that no verse states that humans descended from a common ancestor that spawned all other creatures.
We have the passages in Genesis where God makes it clear that humans were created differently than the animals. If McGrath wants to use scripture he needs to use the whole picture and not those fragments which he can twist to make it seem he has support for his alternative ideas.
And so conservative Evangelical Bible translations often reinforce the entrenched opposition to science by obscuring in translation those things in the Bible that might help readers.
The only people obscuring what the Bible actually says are those like McGrath who abuse verses like Ecc. 3:18.
Penn State University isn’t involved. The Paterno family isn’t involved. But State College might soon have another Joe Paterno statue all the same.
I disagree with how Mr. Paterno was treated at the end of his life and after BUT no matter how good a man he was there should not be a statue raised in his honor. I don’t just disagree with this one but any statue that is made to honor humans.
Years ago I heard that the American people were in need of heroes as their real heroes were dying or had died out. This desperation to have someone to influence their lives for good has led to the rash of misguided labeling of different people as heroes.
If America needs a hero maybe Christians should lift up Jesus for he did make the ultimate sacrifice for all, not just a few. He suffered so that all may live and that is one of the requirements for being named a hero. He also led a good life, healed many people and on it goes.
I do not want to take away from any contribution to society Mr. Paterno’s life made but it was not enough to be revered like a deity. Hero worship is not a Christian teaching and believers should discourage their children from participating in it.
Charles Barkley once said that he was not a role model for children and it is a sentiment I agree with. Professional athletes and other famous people should not be used by parents to guide the lives of their children.
Believers should be pointing their children to Christ and encourage them to use Jesus as their role model.
#4. Discovery Does Not Necessarily Mean Participation— http://www.foxnews.com/science/2014/04/24/ancient-chisel-may-have-been-used-to-build-western-wall-found/
A 2,000-year-old stonemason’s chisel that may have been used in the construction of Jerusalem’s Western Wall has been unearthed at the bottom of the structure along with a number of Second Temple-era objects, claims an Israeili archaeologist.
Some of the artifacts, which include a Roman sword, cooking vessels, a gold bell, coins and a ceramic seal, would suggest the Western Wall, a holy site for both Muslims and Jews, had not been built by King Herod at all.
Eli Shukron, an archaeologist working for the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), found the chisel last summer during a dig near a tunnel at the lower base of the Western Wall.
One of the things that bothers me about archaeologists is that they keep looking for construction tools at completed ancient construction sites. It won’t happen or if they do it was a tool that was lost, misplaced, left behind or never had anything to do with the construction of whatever was on the land where it was found.
If archaeologists knew anything about construction they would realize that once the building or structure was completed the people building would remove their tools and store them wherever they did back then and wait till the next job to come along.
This is not something that is a modern invention but would be practiced in the ancient world as well. Tools cost money and construction workers look after their tools. They do not want to keep spending money on the same tool .
Egyptologists continue to look for construction tools at the sites of the Pyramids, but they are always disappointed. Why? Because whatever machinery the Egyptians used to move the blocks and set them in place would be dismantled and moved to the next site or stored away until they were needed to help on the next construction job.
If they were not to be used anymore, they could have been sold for ‘scrap’, stored away or left to rot BUT they would not be left at the site of the pyramids for they would be in the way of the people using the sites.
It is possible that that chisel was used on the western wall but we will never know because there is no way to verify its use. We can’t even say it was lost by its owner for the same reason.
As an adoptive parent, I’ve heard all the questions.
We get it– you don’t mean to offend, but the questions are still rather off-putting and sometimes downright dehumanizing…Please pass along to anyone who might come in contact with an adoptive family so we can finally get the world to realize that if you wouldn’t say it about a boob job, you probably shouldn’t say it about adoption.
In reading this article and watching the video until I couldn’t stomach it any more I felt that the people saying those things were over-reacting and forgetting that all the people who ask those annoying questions they do not want to answer do not gather in one place at the same time to hear the answers to those questions.
There are just some things you have to endure if you make private things public. I do not like the word ‘boob’ being used for a woman’s chest because the word means ‘mistake’ and God did not make a mistake creating those two body parts.
With that said if a person tells me that they had a chest enhancement or that their wife had one, I would be asking those annoying questions because those people suddenly, and without encouragement from me, made it my business by telling me about it.
If you do not want to hear those adoption questions, then do not tell anyone you adopted children. The over-reaction I see in that post and video is the lack of understanding on the part of those who adopted. Some people are just not trained in the correct social graces the adoptive parents want others to have.
Demanding that others change to fit your desires is not a biblical teaching. It is a personal pet peeve which most strangers or non-close friends would know about and would not be able to side-step in order to not upset the adoptive parents.
One thing I have noticed over the years, and those two adoptive parents are not an exception, is that some parents hide behind their children when demanding that others do as they want. I know a guy here who thinks that just because he has a daughter he now gets to tell others what they can or cannot do.
It is not Christian behavior to act in that manner but people do not care. They want others to do as they want so they take every opportunity and use any excuse to force their ways on others. These same people will complain vehemently if their behavior is used back on them.
The best advice I could give to adoptive parents is–grin and bear it or just ask Jesus to grant you patience to handle the insensitive inquirers. Don’t be boorish like those two parents are.
I am growing weary about all things Evangelical, just like at times I grow weary when I open that closet door in her room. So, here are 5 reasons why American Evangelicalism reminds me of my kid’s bedroom:
First, only The Trinity is perfect so my title refers to earthly things only. Please do not read anything else into that title. Second, who is this guy that Evangelicals must worry about hm becoming weary of their practices and need to change for him?
Last I looked he was not God or a member of the Trinity thus Evangelicals do not need to please him. In fact, no true believer needs to please him, he is not their God and they do not worship him.
He also does not give the true believer their marching orders–only God does that and if he doesn’t like what Evangelicals do, then his complaint would be with God not the true believer.
He is also not the parent of Evangelical so why is he getting weary of their behavior? He is not the one who teaches believers right from wrong and if I remember correctly, he is not even a member of the Evangelical church and if he is, he is free to leave if he doesn’t like how things are going.
Evangelicals are not perfect but they need word from God, not someone who follows after alternatives, to change. Also, just because someone who does not believe God declares Evangelicals are a mess or in one doesn’t necessarily mean that a mess exists. He is on the outside looking in and is not privy to all the goings on in the Evangelical world.
Most likely, the author of that post is upset because he is not allowed into the Evangelical circle because he would bring false teaching with him. He is merely angry due to his sour grapes and instead of removing the sinful beams from his own eyes, tries to remove the specs from the Evangelicals’ eyes.