September 29, 2020

Saturday Ramblings 2.5.11

Happy Saturday! Oh we are all very happy here at the southwest branch of the iMonastery. Stuck inside after fourteen inches of snow makes us all happy. I’ve got a lot of writing and editing to do, so I won’t lack for something to keep me busy. And I hear there’s some sporting event on Sunday evening. Anyone know anything about that? Well, in the meantime I’ll be outside in the driveway, shoveling a pile of Saturday Ramblings.

This Sunday is special for Craig Gross, pastor of the XXX Church in Las Vegas, and not because of the big football game to be played in Dallas. (We will abide by NFL regulations and not refer it by its special name. We will call this game the Superb Owl. Thank you for that, Adam Palmer.) This Sunday is Porn Sunday. Gross wants to draw attention to what he calls the “elephant in the pew.” You can find out how it relates to the Superb Owl by checking the XXX web site.

Perhaps you are like I: You could care less who wins the game, you just want to watch the commercials. One commercial you won’t see is the one from the Fixed Point Foundation. Their Lookup 316 ad was rejected by Fox for having too much theology in it. I guess we can now rest assured knowing that the Bud Light commercials will be theology-free.

I’m sure you have all been keeping up with the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland this week. So you know who is moderating the sessions this year, right? And you know why he says there is a lot of soul searching going on among these economists, right? If you already know all that, you won’t need to read this.

Have you seen The Rite yet? The National Catholic Reporter has this review on the movie about exorcism. There are so many movies that feature Satan, you would think he would be a member of Screen Actor’s Guild. (And there are a number of actors who would tell you that he is.) The priest whose life formed the basis for the book and the movie tells how he went from dealing with the dead to dealing with devils.

This is the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible. Yes, that old translation you no longer use. Not only is it the “authorized version” of the Bible, it also is the one book that shaped the English language maybe more than any other. It’s interesting how the translators approached this text. It seems that they weren’t quite as “academic” as may be thought.

Can you imagine what C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud would have to say to one another?  Mark St. Germain did. He wrote a play where the two great men meet just at the outset of WWII. “Freud’s Last Session” is currently only playing at a theatre in West Palm Beach, Florida. But if it snows anymore here, that won’t be a drawback for  this iMonk…

Who recently said, “My Christian faith has been sustaining for me over the last couple of years,” yet has been widely disbelieved? Pittsburgh Steeler Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger? Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers? President Barak Obama? Read here to find out.

This is a special request brought to my attention by our loyal webmaster, Joe Stallard. Cindy Ward Wine is a friend of Joe and his wife. Cindy has been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. We want to help support Cindy at this time. Not financially, but, well, emotionally. Friendshiply. She would love to get 1000 new friends on her Facebook account. She would love to know that others out there care for her. If you would take a moment and “friend” Cindy, that would mean so much to her. Thank you. Yes, you are welcome to pray for her as well.

Happy Superb Owl birthday to W.C. Fields; Victor Mature; Katherine Ross; Tom Selleck; Jonny Lang; Gene Hackman; Dick Cheney; Vanessa Redgrave; Christian Bale; Jackie Robinson; Ernie Banks; Nolan Ryan; Phil Collins; Clark Gable (as I wrote this award-winning column, I was watching a Clark Gable movie, It Happened One Night); Billy “Danger, Will Robinson!” Mumy; George Halas; and Bob Griese.

At halftime of the Superb Owl you’ll get to enjoy the music of some group called the Black Eyed Peas. I suppose they are a musical group. I think I’ll make a chip run during their performance. One group you won’t be hearing at the Superb Owl any time soon is Over the Rhine. But you can enjoy a song from their new album, Long Surrender, here and now. I recommend that tomorrow night you turn down the sound on the tube and play this again over and over. You will thank me. You’re welcome.

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  1. Link for Obama quote appears to be broken.

  2. Regarding Davos: Puuleeze! Faith? Morality? I think I’m about to blow a gasket!

    I’m in the camp with Dr. Mark Faber, who in an interview with Bloomberg said:

    Marc Faber :”…I dont think the ‘thinkers’ are in Davos. I think it’s a group of liars, and people that go along with the system, and perpetuate fraud and abuse, and dubious practices in the financial system….”

    Goes for Jim Wallis and his ilk, too.

  3. Say what you want about Jim Wallis, but it is right and good and just to start the discussion on ethics and integrity in the multinational community. Power is increasingly being concentrated in multinationals, even more so today as governments get weaker. This power can be used in good or bad ways, and the economic crisis is a pretty horrible example.

    As a Christian in a multinational, it is my job to be salt and light both in a 1:1 and organizational contexts. Gone are the days of the ecclesiastical pecking order that put the believers in secular jobs at the bottom, whose chief responsibility is to fill up the collection basket. We have our realms that we operate in for Christ and we need to think of that role expansively and creatively and use words only when necessary.

    I am personally fascinated by the seams in life where the battle lines are drawn in the supernatural, and I am happily fighting in a pretty big battlefield. So I guess all I am saying is to not write off the realms that are particularly troublesome, because it is exactly those places where we need to do our bit for God.

  4. Steve Newell says

    As for the KJV, many of us, including myself have memorized Psalms 23 and the Lord’s Prayer in the King’s English.

    On Sunday, while we use the ESV for scripture readings, the Lord’s Prayer is always in the KJV.

    • Isaac (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

      Our congregational bibles and readings are all from the NIV (I know, I know), but we use the KJV’s rendering of the Lord’s Prayer also.

  5. David Cornwell says

    Well, the KJV was our bible when I was a kid. And all the words of Jesus were in red. And as I heard in my first church in the hills of Kentucky, “if it was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me.” All this new stuff is just liberal watered down words that will fool us into sinning. So there it is.

    • Steve Newell says

      Of course we all know that Jesus spoke and wrote in the King’s English. Wait, wasn’t the KJV a translation of the Latin Vulgate? And isn’t the Latin Vulgate a translation as well?

      We are so ignorant of Church history.

      • You might be thinking of the Douay-Rheims version, a Roman Catholic translation of the Latin Vulgate. It was done about the same time of the KJV.

        The King James Version was a Protestant effort, and went back to the Greek and Hebrew. It did borrow from earlier English translations, and possibly it borrowed from the Vulgate too. I think it’s really a decent translation on the whole, and still probably the one with the best style, for those who have the patience.

        • Isaac (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

          I’ve historically been a bit ambivalent-to-hostile toward the KJV because of some early experience with some KJV-Only silliness. However, this year I have almost exclusively used it due to the 400th anniversary. I’ve come to really enjoy its beauty, though still have troubles finding any story whose location I can’t remember. It showed me how much I rely on the subheadings as part of my biblical literacy. One thing I’d like to see is more KJVs with the Apocrypha as an appendix (like it was in its original publication).

          A funny thing happened yesterday: I was going to read a bit of Sirach, and thus got out my NRSV w/Apocrypha. I figured I’d do my devotional readings out of it also. But over the last month I’ve come to enjoy the KJV language and poetry so much that I had to stop and dig out my KJV!

  6. If you are really interested in how the KJV came about then read the excellent book, “God’s Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible” by Adam Nicholson. It appears that old king Jimmy was up to his eyes in politics and this new translation was just one of his gambits to neuter one side and consolidate power on the other.

    For such a book I found it to be very readable and historically instructive. Check it out!

  7. Thanks for the link to the group ‘Over the Rhine’ – nice stuff…

    • And – there’s a cool diagram from Zondervan that shows the various translations people use, on a sliding scale – one side is more ‘literal versions’ (think the Greek) and the other is more ‘interpreted versions’ (think Peterson). Very interesting to see where the various translations land on the scale….

      • Well – they have apparently replaced the simple educational diagram from several years back with a way more complicated one that puts the ‘NIV’ at the top of their selling list.
        Essentially, the further away you get from the original language/documents, the more you depend upon the interpretations/opinions of others.

  8. My husband has taken to calling “it” the Super Tureen. Sigh.

  9. David Cornwell says

    It’s interesting that William Shakespeare died about the time of the publication of the KJV. There was greatness in that era.

    • Isaac (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

      Top three influences on English: KJV, Shakespeare, and the 1662 Book of Common Prayer (the last is often forgotten these days). All were from the same period of time, more or less.

  10. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…..let’s see I do have my KJV Bible from my Mormon days. It’s on the shelf…and as mentioned no it hasn’t been touched since 1997-98. Makes me wonder why I’m still keeping it since space in a tight condo is a premum.

    As for “Porn Sunday”. Oh goodie!! I can’t wait!! 😯 More Christian talk about sex. More opportunities to demonize, make people feel guilty and continue to distort a subject, sexuality which Christians don’t know how to treat anyway. As I’ve said I wish there were times the “church: would know how to address other issues, becuase “darn it” the church knows how to use it’s “push botton” issues. And as I leanred from my accountability partner when I was a “fundegelical” we all know how well accountability “works”! (rolls eyes) I did the accountability bit, had a close friend/ministry leader who read my internet reports, talked to regulary – 8 years to be in fact; who ended up living a double life. Last I heard he was serving in his church, where as I got hounded. So I can’t wait to hear about accountability and how it works!! 😀 Moving on….

    And finally my heart goes out ot the Cindy Ward Wine on having stage 4 cancer. My Mom is a pancreatic cancer survivor, and cancer has touched my family deeply. I’ll think about her and continue to hope that she beats the odds. But I’ll close with a lovely little devotional I received at work on Thursday at my company. It was sent by a group of guys in a reformed evangelical Bible study (Translate…I’m still trying to figure out how to unsusbcribe so as to avoid being bombed with the “Why do you want to unsubscribe?” emails) So anyhow in this devotion I read Thursday at work, the topic was about a 12 year old boy who was receiving chemotherapy becuase he had cancer (forget which kind…). Anyhow the Pastor of his church came by and supposedly led this 12 year old’s roomate to Christ. And this church was all giddy and excited, and in the email it was written that God has a purpuse for everything..EVEN cancer!! 😯 Isn’t that charming…? So let me get this staright (and try not to vomit at the thought…) so God gave this 12 year old cancer, JUST so this pastor could have the opportunity to evangelize his roommate and make his name known more so. Wow!!!! Doesn’t that leave you in awe of God (Eagle steps away and vomits..)

    I don’t know…but as an Agnostic I see stuff and continue to experience “Christianity” and the more I realize not only how fraudulent it is, but how harmful it can be.

    Nuff said…I’m going to go back to reading Chrsitopher Hitchens…


    • Well Eagle, accountability has “worked” for me in this area. It was actually the sanctifying grace of God, purchased for me in the death of my Savior, but God did dispense His grace to me in that manner – that is through honest relationships with other men where our brokenness was confessed and we were exhorted and spurred on by one another to personal holiness. I used to be addicted to porn and masturbation. God gave me freedom from both – and living a less-compromised life (although very far from perfect) brings me so much more joy and light-heartedness than those things which brought me a kind of pleasure ever could.

    • Eagle,

      As a way to get off the mailing list, could you set up a gmail address, give that to them and NEVER check it?

      I agree with you about the interpretation of the story. I’m just glad that I believe in Purgatory, so that such types get a chance to repent of all of that stuff before they get into heaven. (I am, of course, making the presumption that they will at least make it to Purgatory.)

      You are probably closer to the Kingdom than many, many pastors and church leaders.

  11. It’s interesting that the bible of the puritans was not KJV but the Geneva bible. I have read that the KJV softens the translation of passages which could have been used against the monarchy. Marginal notes in the Geneva bible were critical of monarchical rule. It’s puzzling why the Geneva bible fell out of favor, while the KJV took on such a divine mystique – especially in puritan-dominated America, after breaking away from both British rule and the English church.

  12. Cindy Ward Wine says

    My dear friend Dora called and told me of this posting….my thanks to Jeff Dunn for his posting. I appreciate all the prayers, love and thoughts coming my way. I feel that I have had a great life and frankly….I feel selfish for asking anyone to pray for me. If you are going to pray….please pray for the children that have cancer….the men and women fighting our war and that this darn snow will soon stop and it will be spring once again! Love and Hugs to all! Cindy Ward Wine

    • Never feel selfish for that. Praying for someone helps the pray-er get closer to the Lord, and that’s a good thing for all of us.

    • Cindy, it is our pleasure to help you in this way. We are very glad you are getting some responses. And rest assured that many of our family here will be praying for you.

    • Cindy…

      In 2005 my Mom was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Her physician had a hunch for my Mom’s medical confition and did a biopsy and discovered that she was in the early stages. The quick action and treatment which included rehab resulted in my Mom beating it. Today every March my Mom celebrates being cancer free. I’m amazed that she is in a minority of thsoe who have beaten a deadly and often terminal disease. But with modern medicine a lot of things are possible. Don’t lose hope or give up…there can be effective treatment.

    • Cindy,
      May the warmth of His grace course through your body and His peace rest upon you. Amen

  13. I wonder, do you really read all the comments made here? So many opinions! Anyway – I just wanted to say I love your posts and I really loved this song. Thanks for your dedication to this site. One of the very few voices of reason out there.

  14. Dora Lee Stallard says

    I want to thank all of you for your prayers and the love and support that you are showing Cindy during her difficult time. Jeff, I want to thank you for reaching out to the Internet Monk community! This is such a blessed ministry and Joe and I are honored to continue to support it in any way we can. Blessings to you all!!