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The Big Picture

'Have you ever heard of Plato, Aristotle, Socrates? Morons.' -- Vizzini from "The Princess Bride"

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Flash! Chaplain knows God's Mind

Apparently, Pat Robertson is not the only conservative Christan who knows for a fact what God is thinking:

An evangelical chaplain who leads Bible studies for California lawmakers says God is disgusted with a rival fellowship group that includes people of all faiths.

My first thought is God is "disgusted" with people worshipping Him? My second thought is how can anyone know the mind of God and therefore know how to worship Him "properly"? MY third thought is the rather more esoteric question of using the bible as any sort of guide to worship, considering it is completely disjointed in its teachings; Jesus' compassion and forgiveness for sinners, and Paul's firey condemnation of the same classes of sinners, etc.

Drollinger said "progressive religious tolerance" is an offense against God and causes harm to its practitioners.
He said the other Bible study group was perpetrating a "deadly lie" by presenting Jesus as "a good moral teacher who loves everyone without distinction."
So then I take it that Jesus was not a good moral teacher? How stupid is this?? One can talk about the good moral teachings of Jesus completely seperate from his supposed divinity. I can only presume that stupidity is a prerequisite for being a conservative evangelical chaplain. I mean even the most casual glancing of the gospels shows that Jesus loved an adulterer, a prostitute (if Mary Magdaline was actually a prostitute) but He hates non-evangelical Christians? Where do you draw the line on who Jesus loves and hates. He himself said to love your enemies [Matthew 5:43-44 NKJV] and hate your family [Luke 14:26 NKJV]. Am I to take it then that if Jesus does not love this "other" bible study group, they are His family, and if he loves Drollinger, then he is Jesus' enemy? Again, the logic here has to be astounding (and not in the good way). Of course, only in fundamentalist Christianity could loving your enemy and hating your family make any sense at all to begin with. But then turn around and ignore that to simply condemn another Christian group is just as absurd.

But to be honest, I still cannot get past the notion that this chaplain, Drollinger, thinks he knows the mind of God. Because no matter how you rationalize it, as a Christian, to claim you know what God really thinks is to put yourself into the same knowledge category as God and that is elevating yourself to diety levels. And I do believe there is a commandment against that, if I'm not mistaken.

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At March 03, 2008 11:41 AM, Blogger Rhology said...

You misspelled "deity", but I already pointed out the misspelling in your profile and you don't seem to care.

It's one thing to claim to know God's mind exhaustively, quite another to claim to know it sufficiently on a given topic, if it's revealed in the Bible, which is God's revelation to humanity.

This guy is absolutely right that the other group is wrong. It is not rationally tenable to hold Jesus as ONLY a moral teacher. He claimed to be God. You're no doubt familiar with the Lord-Liar-Lunatic conundrum. This other liberal group has walked right into it. It's not hard to fix but no one seems to want to.

At March 04, 2008 10:16 PM, Blogger jeffperado said...

Rhology, first I want to say thanks again for pointing out that I misspelled something and ignored the main point altogether. I know that spelling is so much more important that content, especially in this day and age of spell checkers. Typos are now only show to be simple laziness, where the central argument is completely ignored.

Kudos to you!

But I guess the whole sarcasm of DIEty and DEIty is lost on you. Again kudos. The whole Jesus DIEd thing and is also a God (who cannot die) seems to totally escape you. My apologies for that little play on words.

Second, The whole "love your enemy" and "hate your family" point also escaped your attentive eye. That is a shame, as it is my whole point: being Christian and being non-Christian It would seem that non-Christians are the "enemy" and Christians are the "family" But I guess that irony was also lost on you.

Third, you brought up the whole "Lord, Liar, Lunatic" argument. I guess you never considered the fourth possible position: (and I admit it is not alliterative) non-existant. This possibility posits that there was nothing more than a legend, and later generations (those who actually wrote about Jesus) just bought into the fantastical myths. Therefore, there was no lord in the real sense, no liar in the real sense, and no lunatic in the real sense. Just people who came later who believed the fable. I mean look at the facts:

1. There are no Roman records of any trial of Jesus. They simply do not exist and the Romans were fanatical about keeping records.
2. Paul was the first Christian writer, and he never spoke of a human Jesus at all. He only referred to revelations concerning the "sacrifice". His only concrete reference to the death of Jesus takes place in the third heaven, and not here on earth. Paul constantly talks of "Jesus Christ" but never ever even once says "Jesus of Nazareth". Odd certainly if he preached shortly after a man from Nazareth was "proven" to be God.
3. The Gospels were written after the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Temple, with Mark being written first. And more importantly the later the gospel written, the greater and more numerous the miracles described are. That is the legend and myth of JEsus grew over the years.

All of this hardly shows the story of Jesus to be real, and certainly it grew in its width and breadth over the decades from when it began.

I trust this "fixes" your delimma.

At March 07, 2008 8:59 AM, Blogger Rhology said...

Oh, I see. Well, when you don't make a simple correction on your profile, when you intentionally misspell sthg else, the joke gets lost.
And you again misrepresent the notion of the Trinity. Why do you continue to burn a strawman?

The fair reader will note that Matt 5 and Luke 14 are totally diff contexts. This is the equivalent of another strawman. You seem to collect them.
We are to love our enemies. And our family. The hate that we are to have for our family or anythg else is the comparison to the love for Jesus. If we must choose between family and Christ, we must choose Christ, thereby acting like we hate our family. I invite anyone to read the context. I hold out little hope that Jeff will do it for you.

If you want to stake your whole argument on Jesus' non-existence, be my guest. Even the Jesus Seminar doesn't believe that! It's untenable, but again, you're welcome to it.
Just curious - on what basis do you discount the 4 Gospels' testimony that Jesus was actually a real guy?

1. So what? A lot of common criminals (as He was regarded to be) were executed w/o our having the records. They could've been lost. Or just not created.
2. One of Paul's earliest letters is 1 Cor.
1 Cor 15:3 - 8
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.
After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep;
then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles;
and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.

Sounds like he thought Christ was a man to me - He died, after all.
And so what if he didn't say Jesus of Nazareth? Is it not enough to identify Him? What's your argument for why that matters?

3. There is a lot of evidence against that.
And 1 Cor and 1 Thess were undoubtedly written before 70 AD.
And that's not long enough for legend to grow. Besides, legends usually have some basis in real events. And you confuse "legend" with "myth" - again showing your unfamiliarity with the subject. Maybe you shouldn't pull stuff out of your butt that you don't understand.

Finally, you didn't even try to respond to what I said about the actual topic of your post. That's a pattern with you - you run for the hills and shift the goalposts as soon as possible virtually all the time. It doesn't engender confidence.


At March 07, 2008 2:03 PM, Blogger jeffperado said...


Unlike you if I make a mistake I do not cover it it up. I leave for anyone and everyone to see, I am human and I do misstype. If that is the real concern for you then can you explain your misspelling of "sthg" I don't evenknow what that is supposed to be. Could it be some coptic word, I don't know.

So let us examine your original coment and let us see if I failed to refute it via tangency.

You fist wrote: "You misspelled "deity", but I already pointed out the misspelling in your profile and you don't seem to care."

I leave my mistake out there. I don't hide them. I make mistakes. It is my rationality I worry about; not my grammatical missteps.

You next write: "It's one thing to claim to know God's mind exhaustively, quite another to claim to know it sufficiently on a given topic, if it's revealed in the Bible, which is God's revelation to humanity." I completely and fully addressed that so you could not claim I am dodging that.

Next you wrote: "This guy is absolutely right that the other group is wrong. It is not rationally tenable to hold Jesus as ONLY a moral teacher. He claimed to be God. You're no doubt familiar with the Lord-Liar-Lunatic conundrum. This other liberal group has walked right into it. It's not hard to fix but no one seems to want to." I also addresed that issue as well. So you have no legs to stand on. Sorry Rhology.

Real and honest peace,

At March 09, 2008 12:43 AM, Blogger jeffperado said...


Interesting that you posted 1 Cor 15:3 - 8 as evidence supporting Paul's version of Christ.

Please tell me how Cephas, Peter, was not one of the twelve. Please tell me how there were 500 other witnesses when the gospels not only mention none but say Jesus only appeared to them at that particular time. Please tell me how Saul/Paul who converted to Christianity after this event was actually present during this event?

And please tell me how a story that has no grounding in fact, ala aboce, offers proof of Paul claiming a human Jesus.

I offer you this recollection of Paul's as counter-evidence. Read 2 Cor 12:1-6. The quote: "1 It is doubtless[a] not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord: 2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a one was caught up to the third heaven. 3 And I know such a man—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— 4 how he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. 5 Of such a one I will boast; yet of myself I will not boast, except in my infirmities. 6 For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me to be or hears from me."

Now could it just be that this 'revelation' Paul speaks of the one with unrepeatable words be that of Jesus resurrection? Paul uses the revelation of Jesus Christ many times in his epistles to describe Jesus' sacrifice. If Paul believes that Jesus sacrifice comes via revelation and that it happened in this third heaven, and his lone account of the resurrection that you supplied makes no sense in the human realm (as we saw with Peter supposedly not being one of the twelve apostles/disciples), then my explanation is certainly much stronger than yours.

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