Friday, September 21, 2012

I really like make better

At the end of the book of Revelation we come to this passage

 Revelation 22:14-17 - “Blessed are they who do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city, for without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loves and makes a lie. I Jesus have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him who hears say, ‘Come.’ And let him who is thirsty come, and whoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

The word there really is make, it's to do, that's about as close as you can come to it. Unfortunately if you just read it through you would be tempted to think that all liars go to hell, or that for the sin of lying it's the lake of fire for you - which is decidedly not the case, considering that the Egpytian midwives were explicitly blessed by God for lying Exodus 1:19-20.

Most of the versions give it the rendition of practicing falsehood, because the word indicates that it's something that is ongoing, sin is still filling up their lives through lying, and that's true to form. But I like the word make, because as a singular form it shows that persons life, and lie is their work. It's not that they have continued to lie so much as it is they are a liar. They have made themselves, their very selves, into a lie, a falsehood. They are the worst kind of hypocrite, in other words, and there are not going to be people in heaven who says "yes" to God and really mean "no."
It's a small thing, I know, but it's interesting, nonetheless.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The problem of Catholic Saints

I was listening to Catholic radio yesterday, when the caller asked if praying to the saints was idolatry. The priest went through the typical litany of "we don't worship the saints we pray to them for intercession on our behalf." This has got to be one of the worst answers, because it doesn't address the real complaint of the protestant.
Praying, not worshiping the saints is well and good until you think about what is actually happening. Let's say there is a saint named Saint Bevensneck, who is the patron saint of soccer games. If you want your team to win, or everyone to be safe, you ask Saint Bevensneck to intercede on your behalf. Now, the problem is obvious, assuming that he can actually hear your prayers, which there is no basis for, what happens during the world cup series? 3 Billion people praying continually means what, 23, 56, 99 Billion prayers in a day? How can one man possibly hear, let alone answer that many prayers? Where did the Catholics get the idea that people become God when they die, and have enough time and wisdom to hear and answer three billion people praying, and give the appropriate response to God? It's literally an administrative impossibility.
But here's the worst part: all of those people are not praying to God. St. Bevensneck has effectively convinced those people to pray to him, rather than to God. Rather than address their prayers to God they have put their hopes, dreams, and requests into the hands of a mere man. He has actually soaked up the glory due God and re-routed it towards his own incapable self. There is a word for what happens when someone gets the attention and glory that God deserves: idolatry.
The question Catholics must answer is then this: how is taking what is due God and giving it to a mere man not idolatry?

Credo vs Paedo Baptism: Pushback Part I

If you've been following this series you may have noticed my two Pastors commenting on my work.  Phil it might help those of us who fi...