August 29, 2014

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Got Ice Water?

The idea that we shouldn’t be able to indulge in something silly like the ice-water challenge because millions of African children are dying of thirst, says nothing about the wastefulness of Americans, and everything about the utter inability of Africa to take care of itself.

The utilitarian unity of burning at the stake and abortion

The Church thought it was sparing heretics eternal torment by burning them at the stake.  Abortionists tell us they are sparing people from miserable earthly lives.  Both ways, “It’s for their own good.”

Truro Rebirth Credited to Relationship Between the Rev. Baucum and Bishop Johnston


After more than ten years on the front lines of the Anglican wars, I have made a major change. This past Easter vigil, my family and I were confirmed in the Roman Catholic Church.

Is the Creed “the” Sufficient Standard of Orthodoxy?

The Creeds themselves, then, require obedience to Jesus Christ as the One Lord over all things. To profess the Creed but reject the word of God as revealed in the scriptures regarding marriage and sexuality is incoherent.

Stand Firm is 10 Years Old Today

In true Tom Sawyer fence-whitewashing style, I have minions who keep the site humming, while I sit in the shade chewing a blade of grass and complimenting them on their fine efforts.

Three Excuses for Bishop Salmon’s Inexcusable Invitation

Can you imagine what Paul might say to this kind of hair splitting? The Galatians respond to Paul’s letter: “Dear Paul, you wrote that the Judaizers are accursed and eternally condemned and that we ought not to listen to them because they teach a gospel that damns…but how about we let them preach to our pastors in training?

60 Theses on Real Integrity in the Anglican Church

The refusal to affirm a truth (particularly when it is a truth about God) is often just another way of denying it, but without taking responsibility for your denial. This is therefore a double dishonesty which only compounds the deceit.

“How am I gonna be an optimist about this?”

A modern city provides the visual for words evoking the historic catastrophe.  It can happen again, and that isn’t just a function of natural cycles.  There are moral and even supernatural forces in play.  There’s always a sense that Pompeii had it coming.  It’s like Sodom and Gomorrah for folks who don’t want to admit to that Old Testament God stuff.

A Declaration of Principles for Reconciliation

There are only two words to be spoken to false teachers: “repent” and “recant” along with the assurance that forgiveness and warm welcome await those who heed the call. We will not take part in the indaba process which results only in providing false teachings and false teachers with equal footing and equal voice alongside the teachings of Christ through his apostles

BREAKING: Welby names Tory Baucum as “Canterbury Preacher”

At Stand Firm we suspect there may be some who will question Tory’s “commitment to the present day reformation” given his willingness to affirm Johnston’s ministry. It will be viewed by them as a compromised commitment.

Walking and Talking

Let it be a small reminder of how hostile the world is to the Gospel, and a small reminder of what you’ve signed up for when you agreed to take up your cross. The world - in this case represented by gay activists and the media who kowtow to them - hates you. They hate your family, they hate your values, and they especially hate this Jesus.

Night Thoughts Away from Home during Christmas Season

I share readily in the town’s festive mood, smiling at perfect strangers and wishing them all “Merry Christmas.” What is it about Christmas that brings out the best in friends and strangers alike?

Grafton Appointment Exposes Massive Differences in the Anglican Church in Australia

Questioning Charismaticism

If Charismaticism is true, God speaks through tongues, words of knowledge, and prophecy, to guide the church but does not give the church an objective measure for determining whether in fact he is speaking.

Rumor Control

There are times when I feel like Andrews, the prison warden in Alien 3. Every now and then, he would call the prisoners together and say, “This is Rumor Control. Here are the facts.” Something like that is needed here and now, given the hysteria in Washington.

Facebook: Purveyor of Hate

I am normally a big advocate of free speech. I can’t stand college speech codes, and the political correctness culture that demands a pound of flesh when someone violates its taboos drives me crazy. I’m all for calling out nonsense and even hate, but I have no use for silencing idiots and bigots. Let the marketplace of ideas consign stupidity and prejudice to the garbage cans and sewers where they belong. Then there’s Facebook.

The Week

Is it Wrong to Hate Your Neighbor’s Sin?

1 Micah J. Murray is “finished” with the slogan: “hate the sin and love the sinner”. Why? Well, as you might have guessed, it has something to do with homosexuality:It’s…

Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

6 This entry in the growing list of anti-Semite-friendly statements by mainline Protestants comes to us in the form of a letter to the editor of the New York Times. In it, Yale University Episcopal chaplain…

But that’s just your interpretation

9 “That’s just your interpretation. There are many others, so why should I believe yours?” You have probably heard that objection before. How do you deal with it? I shot this brief video back in February…

The right kind of anxiety

An unusual week is unfolding here.  I have two requests for Reconciliation (aka Confession).  It’s not something common in this congregation. Our culture’s default position is that guilt = neurosis.  And I would consider a…

Science as Emotive Art

4 There are many arguments to be made on the subject of global warming. One of those that should not be made under any circumstances is the argumentum in terrorem, the argument from fear. This form…

Same Sex Marriage Comes to Falls Church

13 It’s not the church, it’s a building, but it still pains me as a Christian living and ministering in northern Virginia to note the desecration of the former home of what is now Falls Church…

Jesus and the Paradox of the Law (II)

7 In the first post of this series, we looked at a paradox created by the fact that Jesus was both man and God. As a man, he was subject to Jewish…

Words for the Day

1 The Lord confides in those who fear him;   he makes his covenant known to them My eyes are ever on the Lord,   for only he will release my feet from…

Jesus and the Paradox of the Law (I)

4 At Jesus’ trial before he faced Pontius Pilate, as reported in ch. 14 of the Gospel of Mark, Caiaphas and the other Jewish elders charged Jesus with violating the law against blasphemy (see Leviticus…

God Saved Me

5 Brantly spoke of feeling ill on July 23 and of languishing in the subsequent days under the power of the painful and life-threatening illness. He became the first human to receive an experimental drug called…

Christianity in Public Debate? 2 - vox populi, vox Dei?

for part 1 (The Rejection of Democracy) see here. Our second response to the desire to silence religious voices in public and legislative debate…

The Great Pizza War of 2014

10 Apparently the poobahs at the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) are rolling in so much dough, and have so much free time on their hands, that they’ve decided to take…

Praying through the abominable headline news

3 In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and…

Global South Steering Committee Accepts Oversight Request from South Carolina

11 After exclusion from The Episcopal Church (TEC) and in the midst of TEC leadership litigation to dismantle their Christian witness, the original Diocese of South Carolina began to consider alignment options for continuing participation in…

Christianity in Public Debate? 1 - the rejection of democracy

4 I can’t be the only Christian who’s been told “Religion has no place in politics”. It’s a widely-held view, and one expressed to me most recently by a journalist from a national newspaper whilst interviewing…

Recent Comments

Br. Michael - But that’s just your interpretation

If post modern literary theory is correct then that means that there can be no communication.  In my favorite example: A policeman is giving you a ticket for failure to observe and stop at a…

Matt Kennedy - But that’s just your interpretation

Hi SeminarianPA, I hear you and understand the contemporary state of post-modernist hermeneutics (which is on its way out actually). 1. re: “perfectly” understanding the author’s intent. I agree that the assumption I make (and…

SeminarianPA - But that’s just your interpretation

Matt, I definitely agree that the Bible is “objective revelation” and that it can be (at least mostly) understood. And, I agree that your points will make much sense to many common listeners and readers.…

DaveG - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

What will the Shipmans of the world choose next to blame on Jews?  Global warming?  The Ebola virus?  If only those pesky Israelis would just offer their heads to Hamas to be severed, we would…

Fr. Dale - Is it Wrong to Hate Your Neighbor's Sin?

Matt, Well reasoned and stated. I think there is a kind of universalism that is a consequence of seeing God as only a gracious God. God is also Holy and Sovereign. I noticed that our…

Timothy Fountain - Same Sex Marriage Comes to Falls Church

“They stare and gloat over me; they divide my garments among them; they cast lots for my clothing.” Psalm 22:17

Ed the Roman - But that’s just your interpretation

Let’s try a science other than AGW: let’s try thermodynamics. You can talk about phlogiston, but you’ll be Rong.

Daniel - But that’s just your interpretation

Now wait just a minute there about science!  We know that anyone who disagrees with anthropogenic global warming, I mean climate change, is no better than a holocaust denier (apologies to PCUSA and other mainline…

Matt Kennedy - But that’s just your interpretation

How do you measure wrong and right in science? By observation of the object being studied. Does this hypothesis/theory fit with what I see. The same is true in exegesis.

Betty See - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

It may be ignorance or it may be hate but I was struck by how closely Shipman’s call “for final-status resolution” to the Palestinian question resembled the NAZI command for a “final solution” to the…

SC blu cat lady - But that’s just your interpretation

Except in mathematics and in science where there *are* wrong interpretations of the data, wrong calculations, and wrong conclusions. Nature will let you know if your interpretation is not correct (i.e. is not how the…

Undergroundpewster - But that’s just your interpretation

The idea that all interpretations are valid is not confined to post modern literary criticism. It is part of the common person’s worldview. I wonder if it is a byproduct of western education or has…

Betty See - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

While these careless people disregard history and focus blame on Israel, the real enemy, ISIS, has declared a war intent on establishing Muslim Caliphate rule in not only Europe but in all civilized countries, including…

Katherine - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

#2, I try to be generous.  There are people who think history began with their births, if not their high school years.

B. Hunter - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

What makes you think it’s ignorance and not hate itself?  Same for ECUSA and Yale.

Katherine - Another Glorious Day in Mainline Useful Idiocy

Shipman should be ashamed if his historical ignorance.  Prejudice and pogroms against Jews have a long, long history.  Zionism arose in part because Jewish leaders thought the problem was that Jews were always a minority…