October 2014

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Maine nurse defies the civil magistrate...

The nurse is belligerent in her defiance of public health orders of the civil magistrate that she not expose the healthy to her possible contagion. Quarantines are a basic tool employed by public health officers in defense of the citizens under their authority. In past centuries, the civil magistrates quarantined heretics also. Since those days, the loss of civil magistrates' will to quarantine heretics did not keep them from understanding their duty to quarantine those who posed a severe public health threat. That all changed in my lifetime, with AIDS...

Leithart's future-end of Protestantism VI: rippings and scatterings with a key to the Scriptures...

Paragraphs One Through Four, "The Future-End of Protestantism":

Protestants often act as if the Reformation were the end of history, the moment when the Church reached its final condition. For these sorts of Protestants, the future of Protestantism can only be more of the same. This cannot be. God is the living Creator, still at work in his world, and that means that the Protestantism of the future will be something new, and, given the pattern of God's creativity, something better. (emphasis in original)

In the beginning, God created the world in six days, and each day improved on the previous one. He spoke light, separated light and darkness, and said it was good. Come the next day, and first-day good was not good enough, so he separated the waters below from the waters above and inserted a firmament between. After he tore the waters and called earth to fruitfulness, he said that was good too. Another evening and morning, and again good was not good enough, so he spent the fourth day hanging lights in the firmament, the fifth calling swarming things to swarm in the sea and birds to hover on the face of the sky, the sixth filling the earth with animals and creating man male and female in his image. Each day was good, but each was followed by darkness and dawn that made good better. When he finished, Yahweh God pronounced it very good and rested in what he had made.

Something of the same rhythm continues after the Fall, with God's judgment a critical addition, with God tearing down in order to build up. After the scattering at Babel, he tears Abram from among the nations and sends him wandering through a land not his own, offering sacrifices at oaks and oases. The Lord mid-wives his son Israel through the travail of Egypt and carries him to Sinai, where he teaches him to worship in his tent and live in the land of promise. Solomon reorganizes tribes into districts and builds a temple, a well-watered Eden on Mount Moriah, with the king's palace hard by Yahweh's. Divided, the people of God take a new name, Israel-and-Judah, until Yahweh tears them from the land of promise and melds them together in exile into one new man, now all Jews, now all "Judahites," incorporated into the royal tribe. Through the cross and Resurrection, we are all separated from our native tribes and nations and grafted into the people of God, taking the name Christian.

God creates Israel as tribes, then as a kingdom, then scatters them among the nations, then sends them to the nations, each good, each followed by the darkness of the tomb, each bringing good brighter than the good that preceded it. At each juncture, God calls his people to shed old ways and old names, to die to old routines and ways of life, including ways of life God himself has established.

"Each good?" I don't want to be a naysayer, but what does Dr. Leithart mean by "each good?" Sure the phrase is cheerful, but to what does "each good" refer?

"Each good" is simply to say that everything God does is good.

But isn't this a kinda "duh" statement?" Who would argue? Is Dr. Leithart simply saying...

Christmas comes early...

I'm excited to post a small sampling of the new Christmas album (vol. 2) from Good Shepherd Band. The whole album will be available Friday, November 7th. If you happen to be near Bloomington, there will be a live concert at the The Pourhouse Cafe (314 E Kirkwood) that same day, Friday November 7 at 7pm

Here's a special pre-release (tracks 4 and 6) just for our Baylyblog readers:

Three styles, one prophecy: the fall of Rome...

Three women are making names for themselves as prophetesses for the idols of sodomy and lesbianism. Their names are Rachel Held Evans, Nadia Bolz-Weber, and Eve Tushnet.

First, Bolz-Weber and Held Evans. Both claim to be Protestant Christians and both aim their smashmouths at the church. If they were to speak to the world they'd have no market, but sadly, the church is listening. Both women's market niche is other women who get a kick from brash and defiant, but want to experience their thrills vicariously. Beyond that, the two are different.

Held Evans markets herself to women who attend Bible-believing churches but have not yet mustered the courage to tell their elders and pastors of their rebellion. So, from the secrecy of their computers, they take glee in watching Held Evans attack the Bible and the God Who wrote it—which is really all she ever does. Held Evans spent a year publicly mocking God's ceremonial laws and now she's busy shrieking that if God ever commanded her to sacrifice her son as He commanded Abraham, she'd refuse. Of course her real focus isn't Abraham and Isaac, but God the Father and God the Son. It's been trendy for children of Evangelicals to ridicule the substitutionary atonement the past ten or twenty years. They call the Father sending His Son to the cross "divine child abuse." Held Evans attacking Abraham's faith is simply an attack upon God the Father's love that sent His Son to the cross. It's an attack upon the Substitutionary Atonement. It's an attack upon the Gospel.

Bolz-Weber's smashmouth is also brash and defiant, but she sells herself to liberals. She is mainline Lutheran but she could as well be mainline Episcopalian, Anglican, Methodist, or Presbyterian. Like all liberals, Bolz-Weber doesn't bother attacking Scripture or Scripture's God; she just lies about Him, but with no fear of contradiction because the people who listen to her don't read the Bible. Bolz-Weber is a religious freak show. Mark Twain said he once had the misfortune of taking a train ride seated next to a woman who had not one unuttered thought on her brain. Picture Twain's seatmate wearing a wife-beater without a bra, a man's haircut, tattoos large enough to make a biker proud, and braided armpits, You begin to get the idea.

The third prophetess for lesbianism and sodomy is Eve Tushnet. She is a Roman Catholic and a week from now Richard John Neuhaus's First Things will host a lecture and book-signing upon the occasion of the release of her book, Gay and Catholic: Accepting My Sexuality, Finding Community, Living My Faith. Along with Peter Leithart...

Parents and travel sports clubs...

On the other hand: here's another piece by the same emergency room doc (who wrote the prior piece) and it is excellent. Titled "Your Kid and My Kid Are Not Playing in the Pros," here's an...

Emergency room doc says Ebola and flu patients should go home...

Here's an interesting piece by an Indy doc who says hospitals are not the place to treat sick people with Ebola or the flu. He makes one or two good points, but note how hospitals have changed from Christian institutions of medical care—St. Francis, Divine Savior, St. Jude, Presbyterian-St. Luke—to businesses streamlined to make lots of money for corporations and their stockholders.

Love used to be the inspiration and motivation for most of these institutions; love inspired by the love of Jesus Christ. Now it's money and any name put on the hospital that speaks of love is merely an attempt at window dressing. In fact, hospitals' names have become meaningless.

Our local hospital (where Baby Doe was murdered by starvation by her parents and their doctor and Judge Baker thirty-two years ago) was called "Bloomington Hospital" until a couple years ago when a large "non-profit" corporation, Clarian, licensed IU's name and logo. So now "IU Health" is plastered everywhere—on our Bloomington hospital's facade as well as the facades of hundreds of medical facilities around our state (look west as you drive south on I-65 between Merrillville and Crown Point).

The process is something like Waste Management, Inc. licensing Apple's name and logo and plastering it all over their garbage trucks, sanitary landfills, garbage cans, and dumpsters because their garbage truck drivers use iPhones...

A magic leap forward...

This week, Magic Leap is the beneficiary of a $542,000,000 infusion of capital led by Google. So what is Magic Leap—a technological recapitulation of Chairman Mao's Cultural Revolution?

More. Much more.

On its website, the startup sells its Magic Leap as "an idea based in the belief that people should not have to choose between ...the virtual world or the real world." VB Reports Magic Leaps website "is full of surreal images of submarines and...

Persecution in the early church...

By way of reporting, my multiple attempts to get readers to get a copy of Persecution in the Early Church resulted in about one hundred click-throughs to view the book and seven purchases.

Tags: 

In honor of our ancestor, Francis Scott Key..

Leithart's future-end of Protestantism V: What happened to the flood?

Paragraph One, "The Future-End of Protestantism":

Protestants often act as if the Reformation were the end of history, the moment when the Church reached its final condition. For these sorts of Protestants, the future of Protestantism can only be more of the same. This cannot be. God is the living Creator, still at work in his world, and that means that the Protestantism of the future will be something new, and, given the pattern of God's creativity, something better.

Keeping in mind what I pointed out in an earlier piece, that Dr. Leithart originally titled this project "The End of Protestantism," it's clear Dr. Leithart has his work cut out for him in proposing Protestantism's "end" as a positive move. Paragraph one sets up Leithart's metanarrative. He prods readers to stop "acting" foolishly. We are to put aside our sectarian tribalism and hop on board his Train called Hopeful headed into a "better" future because an always-better future is "God's pattern of creativity."

In his second paragraph, Leithart moves on to build a sort of Biblical foundation for his metanarrative:

Paragraph Two, "The Future-End of Protestantism":

In the beginning, God created the world in six days, and each day improved on the previous one. He spoke light, separated light and darkness, and said it was good. Come the next day, and first-day good was not good enough, so he separated the waters below from the waters above and inserted a firmament between. After he tore the waters and called earth to fruitfulness, he said that was good too. Another evening and morning, and again good was not good enough, so he spent the fourth day hanging lights in the firmament, the fifth calling swarming things to swarm in the sea and birds to hover on the face of the sky, the sixth filling the earth with animals and creating man male and female in his image. Each day was good, but each was followed by darkness and dawn that made good better. When he finished, Yahweh God pronounced it very good and rested in what he had made.

Nice, that turn of phrase "tore the waters." Leithart enters the days of creation and the state of perfection to show God violent in his intense commitment to improvement: God tears things. Certainly, then, we may expect He'll tear things after the Fall, also. It's just His way: He tears things to improve things...

America, the beautiful...

Here are Calvin's comments on God's statement of Genesis 15:16:  "the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full." Very helpful.

* * *

The reason here given is deemed absurd, as seeming to imply that the sons of Abram could not otherwise be saved, than by the destruction of others.

I answer, that we must with modesty and humility yield to the secret counsel of God. Since he had given that land (of Canaan) to the Amorites, to be inhabited by them in perpetuity, he intimates, that he will not, without just cause, transfer the possession of it to others; as if he would say, "I grant the dominion of this land to thy seed without injury to any one. The land, at present, is occupied by its lawful possessors, to whom I delivered it. Until, therefore, they shall have deserved, by their sins, to be rightfully expelled, the dominion of it sill not come to thy posterity."

Thus God teaches him that the land must be evacuated, in order that it may lie open to new inhabitants. And this passage is remarkable, as showing, that the abodes of men are so distributed in the world, that the Lord will preserve quiet people, each in their several stations, till they cast themselves out by their own wickedness. For by polluting the place of their habitation, they...

Yes, you did misunderstand Mayor Parker's subpoenas...

[NOTE FROM TIM BAYLY: A few minutes after I published my piece, "No, we did not misunderstand Mayor Parker's subpoenas...," longtime Baylyblog contributor, Craig French, asked me to review this piece he wrote. Reading it, I realized we'd both been working on opposing pieces without knowing it. So I simply changed the title of Craig's piece to make the point/counterpoint obvious, and now I'm publishing it. Please keep in mind neither of us knew the other was writing, nor what he would say. And yes, I'm happy for Craig's piece. Iron sharpens iron.]

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