New Testament 252

Brueghel painting of Jesus preaching

  Matthew 19:3-12Mark 10:2-12Compare Matthew 5:31-32; Luke 16:18 These are tough passages.  It's absolutely clear, though, that God's design is for marriages to endure. Moses permitted divorce, but as a concession to human weakness, not as something with divine approval. Compare this statement (a hadith, as they're known) from the Prophet Muhammad: "With Allah, the most detestable of all permitted things is … [Read more...]

Brigham Young on young-earth creationism

Young star, with protoplanetary surrounding disk

  "The origin of life, whether human or inferior, must be lodged in some character whom I have not seen! Follow it back, no matter whether it be for six thousand years, six millions, six million millions, or billions of years, the figures and numbers are immaterial, I must have come from some source; my natural philosophy teaches me this. But, leaving the natural philosophy of the child free from false tradition, let us inquire. What does the philosophy of the Christian … [Read more...]

On faith

Around 1884, a photo of Victor Hugo

  "Faith is a necessity to a man. Woe to him who believes in nothing."  (Victor Hugo)   … [Read more...]

Seventy Years Ago, Today

The Mighty Mo

  We Americans tend to be a shockingly ahistorical lot, but this anniversary really does deserve at least a minute of remembrance:   … [Read more...]

New Testament 251

Tissot, Jesus going up to J'lem

  Matthew 19:1-2Mark 10:1Luke 9:51 I like the language of Luke here:  "When the days drew near for him to be received up, he set his fact to go to Jerusalem."  Or, as the King James Version has it, "he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem." καὶ αὐτὸς τὸ πρόσωπον ἐστήρισεν τοῦ πορεύεσθαι εἰς Ἰερουσαλήμ. We mustn't assume, simply because he was the divine Son of God, that this was easy for him.  He knew, as much as anyone w … [Read more...]

Does this author suffer from Ignoramus Hypersensitivity Syndrome?

English lunatic asylum in 19th cent. I think I may have been troubled by it myself, from time to time.  In my experience, it can be aggravated by spending too many hours online.   … [Read more...]

New Testament 250

Aivazovksky painting of Jesus walking on Galilee

  John 10:19-21 Some appear to imagine that, while religious questions today are ambiguous and while contemporary religious claims are disputable and usually disputed, matters would have been much clearer had they only lived back in the days of Jesus. Passages such as this one prove that, on the whole, the imagined clarity didn't exist then, either. In this life, absent divine grace, we mostly see through a glass, … [Read more...]

Not exactly in the style of ISIS

Mt. Gerizim, today

  I wish the Middle East offered more stories like this: Not the injury to the Palestinian boy, of course. No, I'm referring to acts of kindness or service that cross ethnic, religious, and political lines.   … [Read more...]