Archives for 2014

What Does “Your Kingdom Come” Mean in “the Lord’s Prayer”?

According to the gospels of Matthew and Luke, Jesus taught his disciples how to pray. This model prayer has been popularly called "the Lord's Prayer," with "Lord" referring to Jesus. Both Matthew and Luke provide a similar version of it, with Luke's being shorter (Matthew 6.9-13; Luke 11.2-4). Both prayers begin by addressing God as "Father." That was Jesus' favorite way of referring to God. Calling God "Father" obviously is a recognition of an relationship with God similar to what a son or a … [Read more...]

The Bible Is Not “the Word of God”

Nearly all Christians think the Bible is “the word of God.” But they are mistaken if they go by the Bible. According to the Bible, “the word of God” is that which is spoken, not that which is written. There is one exception, and we'll get to that later. Thus, “the word of God” is what people hear spoken, especially preached, but not what they read. An important reason for this is that during Bible times, most people were illiterate and therefore, except for having dreams or visions, could only re … [Read more...]

Egypt’s Bishop Alexander and his Pastor Arius

Sean Finnegan is a friend of mine in the Biblical Unitarian Movement. (I prefer to call myself a One God Christian because I think there is less confusion with it than the label Biblical Unitarian.) Sean and I believe alike about God being numerically one, the Father, and therefore Jesus not being God. Thus, we believe post-apostolic, institutional church fathers--all of them Gentiles and many of them influenced by Greek philosophy--erred in deciding that Jesus is God and eventually that God is … [Read more...]

UK Votes for “Palestine Alongside the State of Israel”

Yesterday, the UK's Parliament voted unanimously to recognize Palestine as a state. Of course, it is not much more than a symbolic gesture in support of the Palestinians' desire for a state. The British House of Commons voted 274 to 12 to support a motion for the British government to "recognize the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel.""Palestine alongside the state of Israel" is not what Palestinians and the international community have been focused on for over 45 years. U.S. … [Read more...]

The Bible Does Not Say God Created the Angels

Christians dogmatically assert that God created the angels. But the Bible never explicitly says this, nor does it say angels had an origin. The Jewish Encyclopedia well observes, “Upon the important problem of the origin of angels Biblical writers do not touch; but it is inferred [in the Jewish Bible] that angels existed before the Creation (Gen. i. 26; Job, xxxviii. 7).”Notice that the above statement cites two biblical references. Genesis 1.26 says in the NRSV, "Then God said, 'Let us make … [Read more...]

My Talk with Star Trek’s Gene Roddenberry about Aliens, God, and Sci-Fi

(This post is an excerpt from a book I'm writing.)I met Gene Roddenberry in 1979. We were flying through the air with the greatest of ease. But it wasn’t on a spaceship. We were on a big, 747 Boeing jet airliner. We were traveling from New York City to Morocco, North Africa, to play in a golf tournament hosted by the king of Morocco.I was told that Mr. Roddenberry was on the plane to participate in the king’s golf tournament. So, I located him and introduced myself. We shook hands and I s … [Read more...]

What to Do about U.S. Homegrown Islamic Radicalism

ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, which also goes by the acronym ISIL or just the name Islamic State, is threatening to commit terrorist acts on U.S. soil as they behead captured Western aid workers and journalists, some of whom are U.S. citizens. UK's Prime Minister David Cameron said yesterday that that will only strengthen the resolve of the UK, U.S., and other coalition forces in opposing these radical Islamists in Syria and Iraq. ISIS has already taken control of much of northern … [Read more...]

I Asked Billy Graham, “What’s It Like for You to Attend Church?”

I was one of the many friends of Evangelist Billy Graham. Ever since he was a teenager, he liked to play golf. When I played the regular PGA Tour, sometimes Billy participated in the pro-amateur event preceding the Atlanta Classic and the Kemper Open at Charlotte. Those tournaments were close to his home in Montreat, North Carolina.One year I first met Billy Graham on the practice putting green at Atlanta Country Club, where the Atlanta Classic was held. Billy played golf cross-handed. So, … [Read more...]