The Mutual Admiration Society

Even as a newcomer to the world of blogs and blogging I am becoming increasingly aware of the tendency for this venue to become something of a mutual admiration society for the marginalized, semi-marginalized and disenfranchised.  

Like Internet marketing, it has to some degree “leveled the playing field” and has provided anyone who yearns a  platform from which to be heard, admired and to otherwise bask in the limelight of their own self-aggrandizement and to engage in reciprocation of the same.  I regret the degree to which this awareness is autobiographical and applaud all who have avoided this pitfall.  The blogs I subscribe to are exemplary in their avoidance of this and I stand grateful, humbled and even sometimes think it’s reason enough not to even have a blog myself.

Yet the snare of the mutual admiration society can be avoided and in fact become a great tool for reflection and an ontological change of perspective.

In so doing, we take our station as observers in the mighty narrative and can then maybe, finally turn away from self and begin to cast our adulation like relentless waves of memorial tribute to the One who rightfully inhabits that center – Jesus Christ and Him alone. In so doing we share perspective with the most enlightened of all inhabitants of the universe.

And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!”  And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” and the elders fell down and worshiped.  Revelation 5:13-14

Yes we have a part to play in the eternal narrative, and so in one sense we’re not mere spectators.   But our part is to love, to pour ourselves out as He showed us the way and to cease hankering for admiration from any other.

“even as i have loved you…” John 13:34


My God, My God! Why?

“divine child abuse” – Christopher Hitchens

My God, my God, why???

In uttering this statement on the cross, the very Center of the universe howled in a moment of divine irony – God asking “why?” to God.

In so doing He was reflecting the unresting, unyielding quest of philosophers and questioners from the beginning – why?

-Why suffering?
-Why warfare?
-Why death?
-Why existence?
-Why humanity?

In finding a philosophically satisfying answer, human thought has utterly failed.  The timeless, boundless “why?” still permeates the corridors of our consciousness, and rides upon every fibre of our being.

But we can narrow some things down on this day, at this time, to this one “why?” question, and realize at least part of the answer to Jesus’ own heaven-piercing “why?”   

“For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.”  – Hebrews 2:18

In others words it was for us.  

Contrary to Christopher Hitchen’s assertion of “divine child abuse” In Him and in His self-sacrifice is the defining point and origin of love, hope and forgiveness.

The Logos-phere We Live In

Like it or not (and our culture obviously doesn’t) we live in a Logosphere of revelation – the thought of God projected in and through Jesus Christ.   He is the reference point of the grand narrative of things, and writing His name on a card and then stomping on it as if to throw a huge temper fit, is not only childish, but irony on the grandest scale.

After all, my dying culture, what are we so afraid of?   

Deandre what’s-his-name?   He’s got your name too.  Your effort at a collective temper fit won’t change a thing.  Long, long after you are gone, untold numbers in heaven and earth will be bowing to the name of Jesus.  

Sorry bud.   

And again, I wonder about all the students who did comply to this idiot’s public whimpering.   

At the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow…” Phillippians 2:10

Hitchens Dodging His Homework – Once Again

Watching a Christopher Hitchens (deceased December 15, 2011) debate is like watching a master manipulator, or like a guy whose bets are on the side of collective ignorance.

As Scott Berkun observes:

…proficiency in argument can easily be used to overpower others, even when you are dead wrong. If you learn a few tricks of logic and debate, you can refute the obvious, and defend the ridiculous. If the people you’re arguing with aren’t as comfortable in the tactics of argument, or aren’t as arrogant  [or informed] as you are, they may even give in and agree with you.

And we might add that if your audience is not versed in the extant data relative to the argument, like the progressive nature of the Biblical narrative, you might appear to win the debate.   

At least the debate of popular opinion.    

But the irony strikes me as this: While the theist must (and is expected to) do their homework in many disciplines like philosophy, physics (quantum, meta and classic), history, biology, etc, the atheistic can usually get off the hook with only a casting glance at the narrative of Scripture.  If he but quotes a few verses or makes reference to just a few aspects of religious history or philosophy, he is regarded as astute and the presentation of his data pertinent and persuasive.

That’s because he’s got a huge advantage – the relative ignorance of Scripture with the masses, both Christian and non-Christian.  It’s the day we live in.

One example is Hitchen’s oft-repeated “man’s been around 100,000-250,00 years-then-finally-God-acted” argument, with the obvious conclusion being that God just didn’t give a damn about all the people who died and went to hell prior to the incarnation of Jesus.  How could you believe in such a God? Hitchens affirms.

It is very much akin to the familiar “what about those who have not heard?” argument so often employed to discredit the Bible, the nature of the Atonement and of Christ Himself.

While the believer must be pretty darn acquainted with everything from astronomy to quantum physics, why hasn’t (or rather wasnt) Hitchens forced repeatedly to deal with verses like Romans 3:25; Hebrews 9:15; Hebrews 9:25, etc.?

These verses do say something, (the retroactive as well as present and future nature of the Atonement) and they need to be introduced into the debate even though they are admittedly in-house arguments, but then so are things like m-theory, multiverse, etc, and whatever the current argument is to sidestep the ramifications that nothing still comes out of nothing if left of itself.

C’mon believing community.  It is just, right and beautiful to be aware of depth of the content of the Logosphere, the universe in which Jesus reigns – our universe and the words of Christocentric revelation.  Then this material must be introduced into the debate. 

From this I personally will never back down.  

Our Logos-Dimensional Universe

Living in a three dimensional universe, (or four-dimensional if you consider spacetime), something transfixing occurred at what the Bible calls, “the fullness of time.”  Galatians 4:4.

Jesus stepped in and defined all things according to Himself.  

The “fullness of time” concept is then used by the Apostle Paul (Ephesians 1:10) to describe that point in time when all things in reality are to be concluded, again according to and in reference to Jesus, the eternal “I Am” of all things definable and indefinable.

Thus He Himself assumes the term “Alpha and Omega“, (Revelation 1:8 cf. 22:13).  Prior to this point in redemptive history, that designation was reserved for God (Jehovah) alone, (Isaiah 41:4).  

In Jesus we have progress as well as the center point and hub of the human experience.  In Him is the beginning and end of all things and the nucleus of definition, an eternal reference point.  

That’s why He called Himself “Cornerstone” (Luke 20:17) and was referred to as such by Peter (Acts 4:11) and  by Paul (Ephesians 2:20).    

In the ancient world, cornerstones were employed in constructing a building according to the designs of the architect.  From the cornerstone, everything else in the structure took its place and position.  

So Jesus stepped from eternity into human existence, and provided the three dimensional world a reference point for building and for understanding the cosmos – Himself.    He was in fact, both architect and builder.

Post-modern culture has its cornerstone – whatever the media defines as relevant and trendy.  Science has its cornerstone – human reason.   The Christian has his cornerstone – Jesus Christ.

But in “the fullness of time“, the curtains of cosmic consciousness will be pulled back unveiling this eternal reality: there can only be one center, one hub, one defining point.

At that sacred place is Jesus Christ.   He alone defines that and everything else.

“…the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

They’re Coming to Take it Away, Ha-Ha!

the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property”

In one word, you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. Precisely so; that is just what we intend.”

The shocking quotations above from Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto reveal what progressives and the left have sought to keep quietly under wraps since the beginning.  In the cause of “fairness”, their intention is to do away with distinct and cherished property rights for every individual.   

But this goal of theirs will involve “stealing.”   In order to achieve the Marxist or leftist utopia, they must employ force in the removal of property from one in order to give it to another.

In this, they come directly against an ideal formulated not last week, last year or the last generation, not even with our Founding Fathers, but in the very foundation of the human experience itself, in fact in the ancient writings of Moses:  “thou shall not steal” – Exodus 20:15.    

The principle stands etched in stone as an abiding moral axiom which assumes at least these three ideas:

Existence of private property
Legitimacy of its pursuit (origin of the “Protestant work ethic”)
Consequequences if violated 

The struggle for this principle, the conflict between Marx and liberty has cost some 100 million valuable human lives in just the last century alone – ever since nations bagan to play with ideas generated in a single document written by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels.  

Can we please see these lives as something more than a statistic, and use the sorrow to fuel our fight?


But how often do we consider “thou shall not steal”  as a foundation in our current fight for freedom?   We commonly just have have three levels of conscious formative consideration in the fight for freedom:

Our current circumstances – we don’t want to lose what we have.  While we are motivated to share, consider the poor, etc, we do NOT want government forcing our hand.
Founding Fathers – this is our country.  The country we built, our Constitution, Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence.  It’s how our country is supposed to behave.
God’s clear directive: “Thou shall not steal“, respect toward other’s private ownership of things.

As the place of God erodes in our culture, the sanctity of private property rights does as well, and down we go.  Consequently our work ethic will continue to be replaced by the delusion of entitlement – a nation of unmotivated, hyper-dependent slaves dancing around cherished Marxian concepts.

If history affords us an opportunity to fix it, the true origin and author of private property and free markets must be honored in a new, resurgent way.

This time (as in the early Christian church), we must join a spirit of charity with private property rights, lest we once again smother by our greed, a well-founded, well loved and workable political framework – free market capitalism.  Marxism is simply not an option.

The state will never take the place of God, in our thinking at least.

Thou shalt not steal” – and that means you, whoever you are.

Our Unselfconscious Addiction to Dispensationalism

Dispensationalism, with it’s complex premillinarian designs, it’s hankering for revivalism, sensationalism, and ridiculous charts is a hugely dangerous distraction for the Christian community. Primarily because it is so accepted as truth, it is typically not even considered among believers. 

It is just adopted. Simply raise one legitimate question about the theological (not political) viability of present day Israel and you’ll know whereof I speak. 

Even the smartest simply take it as “gospel”. In fact it takes more mental effort to disengage from it than it does to discover and adhere to it.

Like a fly you keep swatting that never seems to die, it shows up everywhere. Few actually realize that it is in fact a recent, modern day novelty developed in the mid 1800s. Yet it has affected almost everything Christians have to say. And if you differ from their millenarian conclusions you are immediately held suspect in the court of their minds, if not judged, sentenced and dismissed altogether.

Even if one does not subscribe consciously to the distinct tenets of Dispensationalism, it’s end-time scenarios still plague the minds and shape the thinking of the major slice of the professing believer pie.

The scourge of this distraction has caused the focus of otherwise serious, sober-minded believers to veer off course from Jesus to modern-day Israel, (please do not misunderstand – I support the great nation of Israel politically. I just believe that the eschatological schemes that have been presented by Dispensationalism are at best dubious. It’s a hermeneutical thing) left-over Hal Lindsey-ism and the sensational news stories of the day.

Yet one more fatal symptom of the bigger issue of the heart – distractionism and leaving the centrality of Christ for a cheap substitute.