128 thoughts on “Tuesday Caption Contest Open Comments

  1. It’s art, you philistines.

    It expresses the struggle of the proletarian masses against the bourgeoisie to establish proper ownership and control of the means of production.

  2. Good morning Hamsters. Heavy dew and 34 this morning, just missed the frost of yesterday.
    Brisk and beautiful, furious winds gone away, a winter day to be enjoyed. More energy for Christmas preparations and decorations. Thank you, Lord.

    So the Dems/libs, dogs in the manger that they are, plot to disrupt Texas primary elections and possibly the November 2012 elections. All in the guise of political correctness claptrap. The method du jour is having their accomplices on the federal bench in San Antonio assume a power they do not constitutionally have to themselves redraw state and federal voting district lines. SCOTUS needs to take jurisdiction now. Are there enough justices there with the spine to do so? The issue is state v. federal, legislative v. judicial powers. If this isn’t a constitutional question, what is?

  3. So a TParty group in Richmond Va asks for a refund for fees charged for them to use a public park because the Occu-terds are not being charged a similar fee for much more public service usage. In response the mayor of that city instigates an audit of the TParty group.
    I am pretty sure this was linkied to by someone yesterday, however, it is worth another look. This lib-VSR mayor has just sown to the wind and is about to reap the whirlwind.

    On a bigger scale, this kind of thing is becoming the tinder box which will ignite the firestorm of righteous indignation that will make the wildfires this summer pale in comparison (figuratively of course). The D-VSRs are pushing and pushing, hoping to get a violent reaction from the oppressed conservative majority, in order to impose martial law. Hang on because it is going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better.

  4. The EU is in the process of financial meltdown. Greece is going to default on their debt, no longer a question of if but when. Italy: Ditto. France, French banks hold a lot of Greek and Italian bonds, which will soon be worth a whole lot less if not worthless. Right now those banks are allowed to value those bonds at 100% of face value and continue as if nothing is wrong- in reality they are bankrupt. The Euro will soon become synonymous with the peso/toilet paper, US investments in Europe will crater in real value and the dominos will fall ever faster.

  5. #13 Ms Adee:

    The method du jour is having their accomplices on the federal bench in San Antonio assume a power they do not constitutionally have to themselves redraw state and federal voting district lines. SCOTUS needs to take jurisdiction now. Are there enough justices there with the spine to do so? The issue is state v. federal, legislative v. judicial powers. If this isn’t a constitutional question, what is?

    It is absolutely a constitutional issue and that is the 10th amendment _STATES RIGHTS. The Texas legislature needs to tell the flaming lib-VSRs to butt out! The lines need to be drawn in a reasonable fashion without regard to racial make-up as I indicated in my post yesterday:

    39 Bonecrusher says:
    November 28, 2011 at 3:46 pm
    #38 It should be a very simple thing for any computer geek.
    1) Load the populations within every zip code in the state into a database
    2) Using major thoroughfares and waterways when possible, program the computer to draw the districts into the most geographical uniform districts possible with as close to equal number of people within each district.
    3) Do not let race, ethnicity, or income have any bearing on the results – straight by the numbers with no gerrymandering.

    Any further meddling by any federal POS needs to be met with hostility. That does not mean violence, per se, but it does mean that the meddling judge needs to spend some time in a muni jail cell for overstepping his bounds.

    This whole “civil” rights thing has gotten so far out of hand it has become a formidable weapon in the hands of the lefties. The time has come to take that weapon away.

  6. Greece will be playing the part of Franz Ferdinand. Germany will come to its senses and economically assassinate the Greek economy (actually it’s euthanasia – a mercy killing) by refusing to bail them out any further. The French franc and German mark will be resurrected (England was smart and kept their currency). The “Allies” will be played by Germany and the Benelux, England, France and some of the other Northern European countries. The “Central Powers” will be played primarily by PIIGS. Our HNP will side with them and squander our pittance of a remaining fortune in support of his rotting corpse of an ideology, Marxism. Oh, these are troubled days we face.

  7. This violation of the constitutional separation of powers is a great opening for Rick Perry to step in and make a huge issue of it in defense of the great state of Texas.

  8. #16 – Mr. BC. The EU looks to me to be washed up, and the timing of “default” or whatever term you want to call it is just the mechanics. In my prior bank examining days, I would often reflect that the bank took the loss the day the money was lent out – it was merely a question of timing as to when that loss would be “realized” and reflected on the books. Same analogy here. The daily (usually around 3PM local time) announcement that a “deal” had been reached (causing the markets to go up) was always dismissed by the following morning when some study of this “deal” was undertaken. The only remaining option they have is for the ECB to print more Euros just as our Fed prints more dollars – thus devaluing their currency but being in a position to pay back with “cheaper” Euros. Looks to me like the US exposure is primarily in the banking sector, and while it hold little direct sovereign debt, it does have loans to the Euro banks which do own the debt. Plus, the EU is a huge consumer base for American and Chinese goods, so there is some talk about these nations sort of “tote the note” idea to keep the trading lines open. Overall, I pay close attention to what is happening as I sincerely believe that we will be next without draconian steps, which none of our politicians are willing to set out for fear of losing their seat at the next election. Thus I conclude that worldwide collapse is on the way. Whether this is the result of a planned event to cause us to accept a world wide currency or is merely the result of greed and incompetence, the end result may be the same – more loss of sovereignty and individual liberty.

  9. Sarge’s #4 is impossible to beat, but here are my submissions, feeble though they are:

    1) Help! I’ve fallen and I can’t get (it) up!
    2) This college hazing is getting out of control.
    3) I don’t know if I’m feeling horny or just a little cheeky.
    4) The local municipal crew for fixing street problems gets their day started.

  10. G’Morning all

    Ain’t got time to sit, just going to pop my head in the door for a second. I’m having DSL problems. It connects OK, but stops midway or crashes on downloads. I’ve done all the normal stuff and then spent 4 hours on the phone with a level 1 tech that was lost but wouldn’t admit it and pass the torch. Finally he said he would give it to a senior tech, said goodbye, but no senior came on. I’m getting ready to call and talk to some supervisors……………

  11. A guy in Knoxville hits the nail on the head.

    Knoxville News Sentinel

    Letter: ‘Occupy’ example of Obama’s America
    Posted October 17, 2011 at 4:07 p.m.

    Jack A. Furnari, Knoxville

    The current Occupy Wall Street movement is the best illustration to date of what President Barack Obama’s America looks like. It is an America where the lawless, unaccomplished, ignorant and incompetent rule. It is an America where those who have sacrificed nothing pillage and destroy the lives of those who have sacrificed greatly. It is an America where history is rewritten to honor dictators, murderers and thieves. It is an America where violence, racism, hatred, class warfare and murder are all promoted as acceptable means of overturning the American civil society.

    It is an America where humans have been degraded to the level of animals: defecating in public, having sex in public, devoid of basic hygiene. It is an America where the basic tenets of a civil society, including faith, family, a free press and individual rights, have been rejected. It is an America where our founding documents have been shredded and, with them, every person’s guaranteed liberties.

    It is an America where, ultimately, great suffering will come to the American people, but the rulers like Obama, Michelle Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden, Jesse Jackson, Louis Farrakhan, liberal college professors, union bosses and other loyal liberal/Communist Party members will live in opulent splendor. It is the America that Obama and the Democratic Party have created with the willing assistance of the American media, Hollywood, unions, universities, the Communist Party of America, the Black Panthers and numerous anti-American foreign entities.

    Obama has brought more destruction upon this country in four years than any other event in the history of our nation, but it is just the beginning of what he and his comrades are capable of. The Occupy Wall Street movement is just another step in their plan for the annihilation of America.

    More Here:

    http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2011/oct/17/letter-occupy-example-obamas-america/

  12. And I’ll leave you with this

    I saw where the White House Christmas tree arrived from Wisconsin. To save electricity costs, they plan to illuminate the tree with dimmer bulbs.

    They are going to screw Congressmen into the light sockets.

  13. #18 Hamous: Nice synopsis but you left out one of the big areas: The middle East and more specifically, the pending genocidal impulse aimed at Israel. I think the European collapse and ours will just be the fat lady clearing her throat before the real bad stuff hits. The real good news in all of this destruction is that MESSIAH WILL RETURN SOON.

  14. #26 As you know, I don’t subscribe to the prophetic interpretation of the Book of Revelations (But of that day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.) so I don’t see the two events tied together to fulfill a prophecy. I do think the Persians will certainly try to take advantage of a collapsing Europe and a pusillanimous American president and try to fulfill their goal of an Israel-free middle east.

  15. #27 I am not “date setting” at all, I am indicating that we are in the season to watch the end of this era. We are commanded to know the season which is very different than trying to set a day or hour. If you don’t see Revelation as a book of prophecy, how do you see it?

  16. #18 Hamous:

    The “Central Powers” will be played primarily by PIIGS. Our HNP will side with them and squander our pittance of a remaining fortune in support of his rotting corpse of an ideology, Marxism.

    I can see this happening very easily. Under this scenario, those that oppose the flagrantly wrong direction the foul “O” plunges into, will be declared enemies of the state or terrorists or some other such term which will supposedly give him license to round us all up.

  17. #20 EG:

    Thus I conclude that worldwide collapse is on the way. Whether this is the result of a planned event to cause us to accept a world wide currency or is merely the result of greed and incompetence, the end result may be the same – more loss of sovereignty and individual liberty.

    I agree completely. This is part of the “shaking” that will encompass the entire world. This shaking will be physical, do you recall a previous 3 or 4 year period where there were so many earthquakes? It will also be of the creations of man, do you recall a period of time that did not lead to war when everything was this messed up on a global scale? If this whole thing degenerates into a world war, all bets are off – there is no way to tell what the outcome will be as far as our individual lives are concerned.

  18. #20 Would you be so kind as to ‘splain the “mark to market” thing, has it been recently changed and how have those changes affected us?

  19. Okay, I like a challenge. So here is my “Top Ten” list of captions for that picture”

    1) Okay, I know my OWS tent was around here somewhere.

    2) Why can’t this city afford a real street sweeper?

    3) As an OWS representative, I want to “clean up” Wall Street.

    4) The “Tooth Fairy” in drag.

    5) A lost OWS Halloween party goer.

    6) An OWS person made to clean up the park.

    7) Boy, that was one wild Dummycrat party we had last night.

    8) I’ll be ready for that OWS press conference in just a few minutes.

    9) I left that tube of toothpaste around here somewhere.

    10) Well, at least I don’t have any cavities.

    There, see if any of these will do the trick.

  20. Okay, I have a lot of running around to do, so I’ll throw my two cents in and hope I can come back later. (I LOVE having to file lawsuits against deadbeats, but I digress…)

    Prophets in the early books were more like fortune tellers, often paid to say what the buyer wanted to hear. As you go on through the Bible, you see prophets as mouthpieces for God, speaking for Him.

    Rev 10:11 Then I was told, ‘You are to prophesy again, this time against many different nations and countries and languages and kings.’

    Our definition of “prophecy” today is more of a seer, someone who foretells the future. Understanding the Bible definition of what a prophet is important in understanding what you’re reading. Understanding context in light of time, substance, literature types used, customs, and motive are important in getting the full import of the message.

    I took a class on Revelation some years ago as part of my youth ministry requirements (part of FTCM, and you Catholics out there who get a chance to go through the course ought to do it – I learned a lot). I hope I get this right – I don’t have time to pull out my reference materials.

    Prophetic literature was used mostly in times of persecution. It was a way for the persecuted (the Jews) to communicate without their oppressors fully understanding what they were seeing. A Roman soldier might not understand the meaning of the word “horns” or what lamp stands were, etc. If you look at the prophetic literature in the Bible, you’ll see it cropped up during times of cultural stress. It was also used as a way of encouraging the oppressed, who needed it during their times of duress.

    You also need to remember that the books were written on scrolls, and there were no chapter or verse markings. They were meant to be read as one story. The blessing of chapter and verse is that it makes it easy to find specific lines of Scripture. The curse of it is that it’s wayyy too easy to strip Scripture of its meaning by isolating specific lines from its context.

    Rev 11:19 Then the sanctuary of God in heaven opened, and the ark of the covenant could be seen inside it. Then came flashes of lightning, peals of thunder and an earthquake and violent hail.

    If one were to stop at the end of this chapter, the “ark of the covenant” might be thought to be a box of some kind, or a tablet, or whatever. Until you read the next few lines:

    Rev 12: 1 Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman, robed with the sun, standing on the moon, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

    2 She was pregnant, and in labour, crying aloud in the pangs of childbirth.

    In Catholicism, this is seen as a reference to Mary, the ark of the covenenant, the covenant – or new understanding and relationship – was Jesus.

    The “666” referred to one of the Roman emperors, once you assigned the number values to his name. You also need to remember that there are specific ideas associated with numbers; e.g., “12” refers to God’s people, “3” is something divine, etc. The poor Jehovah’s Witnesses who read literally had to contort their religion so that more than 144,000 would enter Heaven. Understanding that 12×12 means All of the believers, and times 1000 means a whole lot of those people, you understand the vastness of Heaven and God’s love.

    The upshot of all of this was the Revelation was a message to the oppressed Christians and Jews of hope in Jesus as their savior. I was reminded by my friend the Episcopalian priest: “There’s Big T truth and little t truth. Focus on the Big T.” In this case, Jesus will come again, there is salvation in belief in him, and we are to live lives of holiness and strive to know him better each day. There is a Heaven, and there is a Hell.

    As many different interpretations that there are of the Bible, as each faction and individual puts there own spin on it – sometimes for reasons of ego, because many people are driven want to be the one “with the truth”, sometimes for power (see Jeremiah Wright), sometimes out of real concern for the welfare of others – we should focus on the Big T. Trying to read signs of the end times may be interesting, but if I focus on today, I will be ready whenever my end time arrives.

  21. If you don’t see Revelation as a book of prophecy, how do you see it?

    Without going too deep into it, it is an allegorical representation of what early Christians were facing every day of their lives. It was written that way as the Christian community had been driven underground was being persecuted relentlessly by the Romans. In brief, they were speaking in code for fear of being put to death.

  22. The “666″ referred to one of the Roman emperors, once you assigned the number values to his name.

    The author told us as much in Rev 13:18

    Wisdom is needed here; one who understands can calculate the number of the beast, for it is a number that stands for a person. His number is six hundred and sixty-six.

    From the commentary:

    Each of the letters of the alphabet in Hebrew as well as in Greek has a numerical value. Many possible combinations of letters will add up to 666, and many candidates have been nominated for this infamous number. The most likely is the emperor Caesar Nero (see note on Rev 13:3), the Greek form of whose name in Hebrew letters gives the required sum. (The Latin form of this name equals 616, which is the reading of a few manuscripts.) Nero personifies the emperors who viciously persecuted the church. It has also been observed that “6” represents imperfection, falling short of the perfect number “7,” and is represented here in a triple or superlative form.

  23. Hamous and TT, and prolly Pyro: After reading what you have written just today, I have more meat on the bone of our profound differences in understanding of the Scriptures. Further, I also understand that for us to be in agreement on these issues, it will take an act of Divine Intervention to change one or both sides of the debate.

  24. Without going too deep into it, it is an allegorical representation of what early Christians were facing every day of their lives. It was written that way as the Christian community had been driven underground was being persecuted relentlessly by the Romans. In brief, they were speaking in code for fear of being put to death.

    ummm No

  25. #39 – I think I’ve said that before. I prefer to base my understanding on 2000+ years of Christian scholarship rather than a relatively recent interpretation of the Scriptures.

  26. There are a bunch of really funny people lurking out there and they all shop at Amazon.com.

    Once Amazon posted a Diamond brand HDMI cable for $2,694.75, hilarity ensued in the review section.

    Sample review:

    I was going to buy a $2.82 hdmi cable on amazon and then I came across this masterpiece, and I knew I had to do whatever it takes to get it. After getting a 3 month advance on my salary thanks to the fine folks at the check cashing place who only charged me a 35% interest rate, I was in business to finally own one of these beauties. Because of the price amazon decided to send the hdmi cable by armored car. Originally I was going to use the money to buy an engagement ring for my girlfriend, but I came upon this cable and decided this could keep me warm at night all by itself. So I dumped the girlfriend, and now when not in use, this cable tucks itself in next to me all snug and warm. It even reads bed time stories to me from time to time which help with my night terrors.

    and

    After six months it happened. The TV turned on. And there she was. My murdered wife. She began to talk to me but I couldn’t hear anything. I had returned my Denon AKDL1 Dedicated Link Cable as being faulty since I was hearing those voices. She began to act out charades to me and told me that it was indeed the No-armed man that murdered her and that the drunk driving ‘accident’ in which he took the lives of my parents in their Huge Ship was also not an accident. The No-armed man was hired by some unseen forces that were acting against me. I was racing against time in finding the No-armed man before it was too late.

    There are 14 reviews and they are a hoot.

  27. I also understand that for us to be in agreement on these issues, it will take an act of Divine Intervention to change one or both sides of the debate.

    The problem is a simple one to solve actually. All one need do is read the book in a literal fashion understanding that the visions that John described were from a man familiar only with first century things. That is, he had no knowledge of a nuclear blast yet he describes a nuclear detonation to a “T”. I could go on but will not.

    Read the first three verses from the Catholic approved Bible and/or any Protestant Bible for yourself and it clearly says this

    Rev 1:1-3 (the Catholic Approved Version)
    1 A revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him so that he could tell his servants what is now to take place very soon; he sent his angel to make it known to his servant John,
    2 and John has borne witness to the Word of God and to the witness of Jesus Christ, everything that he saw.
    3 Blessed is anyone who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed those who hear them, if they treasure the content, because the Time is near.

    and this is where I will depart and end my portion of this discussion.

  28. I’m nearing the end of a six month struggle reading a primer on the writings of Aquinas. And a mighty struggle it has been. But fascinating. If exercising your brain staves off dementia, I should be in good shape for a while.

  29. I am so glad that McCain did not get elected president. That in no way means that I am glad that O did. The choice was between getting shot with a .308 vs. .270 neither is acceptable.
    This issue demonstrates why McCain needs to retire and I MEAN NOW!

    Republican Sens. Rand Paul (Ky.) and John McCain (Ariz.) battled on the Senate floor Tuesday over a proposed amendment to the pending defense authorization bill that could allow American citizens who are suspected of terrorism to be denied a civilian trial.

    Paul argued the amendment, which is cosponsored by McCain, “puts every single American citizen at risk” and suggested that if the amendment passes, “the terrorists have won.”

    “Should we ere today and remove some of the most important checks on state power in the name of fighting terrorism, well then the terrorists have won,” argued Paul, “[D]etaining American citizens without a court trial is not American.”

    McCain simply refuses to wrap his arms around the demonstrable fact that the Ds have no scruples or morals. He thinks that they have basically the same moral underpinnings as he does, therefore the power he is proposing be entrusted to the feds would never be abused. A more realistic view is that is a lead pipe cinch that the power would be abused and it would be sooner than later. I had the same feeling of reservation when W first instituted the Homeland Security apparatus; I did not fear him or his administration abusing but I knew that a liberal D admin would definitely abuse it. Under McCain’s plan, all the foul one would have to do is unilaterally declare someone a “terrorist” and they get dissappeared, what, no habeaus corpus – we don’t neeeeed no steeeeeeeeeeeeeeeenking habeaus corpus.

  30. Bonecrusher – while we may never agree on the interpretation of Scripture, I will say that I admire your strength of conviction, and that the conviction centers around a desire to know the will of a merciful God.

  31. Shannon – Are you reading Summa of the Summa? That was my Lenten journey for a few years. I figure Alzheimers is held at bay for at least another 20 years.

  32. Some corrective additions to conventional wisdom and history.

    From the George W. Bush White House website in September, 2008:

    For many years the President and his Administration have not only warned of the systemic consequences of financial turmoil at a housing government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) but also put forward thoughtful plans to reduce the risk that either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac would encounter such difficulties. President Bush publicly called for GSE reform 17 times in 2008 alone before Congress acted. Unfortunately, these warnings went unheeded, as the President’s repeated attempts to reform the supervision of these entities were thwarted by the legislative maneuvering of those who emphatically denied there were problems.

    2001

    April: The Administration’s FY02 budget declares that the size of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is “a potential problem,” because “financial trouble of a large GSE could cause strong repercussions in financial markets, affecting Federally insured entities and economic activity.”

    2002

    May: The President calls for the disclosure and corporate governance principles contained in his 10-point plan for corporate responsibility to apply to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (OMB Prompt Letter to OFHEO, 5/29/02)

    Read the rest here.

    One of my biggest problems with GW and his administration was their lack of faith in the political common sense of the American people hence the Bush White House most often ignoring the need to make important arguments directly to the public. The list above illustrates their frequent warnings to precisely the those who were least likely to do anything about the problem. The GSEs Fannie and Freddie, regulatory agencies and most vitally, a corrupted and blindered Congress had the most to gain by maintaining the status quo and hoping against vain hope that the worst would never happen. I blame Karl Rove for much of that strategy.

    Had Bush made explicit, public appeals for sanity in the mortgage markets, there might have been some things eventually done to at least mitigate the inevitable and possibly alter the following sequence of events we have seen pass.

  33. Thank you TT: I have to say that you have always treated me with respect, in spite of our profound differences in understanding the most important collections of documents (Genesis-Revelation) that has ever existed. Yes we both worship a merciful Elohim, however, Scripture (Old Testament) is full of examples where HE gets a belly full and starts to kick tail. Mercy is only one of HIS attributes, HIS WRATH is something to be feared as much as HIS MERCY is to be desired.

  34. Oh, goody! A burgeoning debate on the meaning of the book of Revelation!

    So far we have at least 3 different views. If we can get Darren to join in the frivolity we can get the LDS viewpoint. Surely there’s a Presbyterian or Lutheran available for the non-Baptist crowd to cheer for. Maybe we can get Benzion to chime in with the Orthodox view of the end times.

    Just remember, if you don’t post you’ll be Left Behind!

  35. All one need do is read the book in a literal fashion understanding that the visions that John described were from a man familiar only with first century things.

    Okalee dokalee

    Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne and the four living creatures and the elders, a Lamb that seemed to have been slain. He had seven horns and seven eyes; these are the [seven] spirits of God sent out into the whole world.

    What does that mean, literally?

  36. I’ve chewed on Calvin quite a bit.

    I’m in to more ancient commentary at this juncture. A Presbyterian might say I’m predestined to do so. Heh.

  37. More commentary:

    The Book of Revelation cannot be adequately understood except against the historical background that occasioned its writing. Like Daniel and other apocalypses, it was composed as resistance literature to meet a crisis. The book itself suggests that the crisis was ruthless persecution of the early church by the Roman authorities; the harlot Babylon symbolizes pagan Rome, the city on seven hills (17:9). The book is, then, an exhortation and admonition to Christians of the first century to stand firm in the faith and to avoid compromise with paganism, despite the threat of adversity and martyrdom; they are to await patiently the fulfillment of God’s mighty promises. The triumph of God in the world of men and women remains a mystery, to be accepted in faith and longed for in hope. It is a triumph that unfolded in the history of Jesus of Nazareth and continues to unfold in the history of the individual Christian who follows the way of the cross, even, if necessary, to a martyr’s death.

    And this:

    The Book of Revelation had its origin in a time of crisis, but it remains valid and meaningful for Christians of all time. In the face of apparently insuperable evil, either from within or from without, all Christians are called to trust in Jesus’ promise, “Behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age” (Mt 28:20). Those who remain steadfast in their faith and confidence in the risen Lord need have no fear. Suffering, persecution, even death by martyrdom, though remaining impenetrable mysteries of evil, do not comprise an absurd dead end. No matter what adversity or sacrifice Christians may endure, they will in the end triumph over Satan and his forces because of their fidelity to Christ the victor. This is the enduring message of the book; it is a message of hope and consolation and challenge for all who dare to believe.

    I think we can all agree with that last paragraph. Well everyone except the atheist ;-)

  38. #60 Shannon

    I’ve chewed on Calvin quite a bit.

    I can’t imagine that would have tasted very good. I guess it was Calvin jerky, to require that much chewing? ;)

    Okay, okay, I’m leaving. I should be gone already…
    /struggling to get my paperwork together…

  39. Shannon – Are you reading Summa of the Summa?

    He’s Lutheran.

    He’s reading Summa dis and Summa dat.

  40. Church-Lite

    Has the heaviness of your old fashioned church got you weighted down? Try us! We are the New and Improved Lite Church of the Valley. Studies have shown we have 24% fewr commitments than other churches. We guarantee to trim off guilt, becuase we are Low-Cal… low Calvin, that is. We are the home of the 7.5% tithe. We promis 35 minute worship servies, with 7 minute sermons. Next Sunday’s exciting text is the story of the Feeding of the 500.

    We have only 6 Commandments– Your choice!! We use just 3 gospels in our contemporary New Testament *Good Sound Bites for Modern Human Beings*. We take the offering every other week, all major credit cards accepted, of course. We are looking forward with great anticipation to our 800 year Millenium.

    Yes, the New and Improved Lite Church of the Valley could be just what you are looking for. We are everything you want in a church… and less!!

  41. He’s too old to be reading the Kama Sutra.

    You’re only as old as the women you feel.
    — Groucho Marx

  42. What does that mean, literally?

    Apparently you missed my scriptural reference that Revelations is a book of prophecy. A prophetic vision given by God to John, it says so right in the first three verses. If one chooses to blindly believe commentaries rather than read the words for ones own edification and strive to understand what is being said then I can understand the necessity to lampoon my comment.

  43. If one chooses to blindly believe commentaries rather than read the words for ones own edification and strive to understand what is being said then I can understand the necessity to lampoon my comment.

    First, I wasn’t lampooning anything. I was merely pointing out the dangers of taking a complex book like Revelations literally. That passage clearly demonstrates the symbolism used throughout the book. There is no way to read it literally without taking a journey on the magic bus with Timothy Leary.

    My point is, everyone interprets Revelations. EVERYONE. Far from being blind, I choose to take 2000 years of Biblical scholars’ interpretations into consideration over modern ones.

  44. As complex as the book is, the prophecy seems simple to me:

    22:7 Behold, I am coming soon.

    I’m not concerned with when. I try, pitifully, to be ready at all times.

  45. The Throne that John is standing before is the very throne of God. the scen is what john saw while standing there. The Bible holds all the definitions you seek of what is being described.

    4 Living Creatures angelic creatures called seraphim in Isaiah 6

    Elders are prolly the head of the 12 tribes of Israel and the 12 apostles

    “A Lamb that seemed to have been slain” is always the symbol of Jesus Christ and his reason for coming to the Earth the first time.

    The Seven Spirits represent the sevenfold ministry of the holy Spirit as depicted in Isaiah 11:2

  46. Though I have seen numerous preachers steer their flocks away from commenteries, not one has offered up a legitimate reason. Studying the thoughts of greater minds has enriched my faith joirney beyond measure.

  47. The Bible holds all the definitions you seek of what is being described.

    I know. You just listed several symbols that John used to relay his message. That was kinda my point at the beginning of this discussion.

  48. My point is, everyone interprets Revelations.

    Let the Bible interpret Revelations for you. To say that Revelations is merely some allegorical book that Christians used to speak in code because they were afraid of the Romans has no basis in fact and cannot be substantiated. john wrote revelations and clearly states it is a book of prophecy of things to come. It has been proven that John wrote the book while on the Isle of Patmos.

    I am saying that one should not take any one man’s “commentary’ to be fact even if that commentary is 2000 years old. thorughout the Bible God uses symbolism to get messages across. To understand any book of prophecy in the Bible it is important to read and study the symbols, historical data of the day, who wrote it and who the message is directed to.

    You do not see me running around screaming OMG the end is near, I read the books to garner hope for myself and others. If i was to believe Revelations is simply allegorical in nature then I would miss one the most important messages of the Book , Jesus coming back and defeating Satan. Revelation 19 btw.

  49. Though I have seen numerous preachers steer their flocks away from commenteries, not one has offered up a legitimate reason.

    The minute one man reads the Bible and tells another what he thinks it means, he’s produced a commentary. That pretty much makes us all “commentarians”. The preacher that steers his flock away from commentaries is doing nothing more than presenting his commentary as the only valid one. The danger in such a practice is well-documented. In extreme cases you get the Koreshians, Jonestown, and Heaven’s Gate.

  50. To say that Revelations is merely some allegorical book that Christians used to speak in code because they were afraid of the Romans has no basis in fact and cannot be substantiated.

    The blood of thousands of Christians martyred under Rome from the time of John of Patmos testifies to their persecution. They weren’t just “afraid of the Romans”, they were being butchered by the Romans for merely speaking the name of Jesus Christ.

  51. Hammie

    I guess one of my passions in matters of religous and (cough cough) polytickles discussions is pressing home the need for everyone to read the source “books” for themselves. I meant no malice with you in the course of our discussion.

    Commentaries are fine but I temper what I read from other people by taking the time to read what is being commented on.

    Heh, Trust no one and verify everything.

  52. #86
    Hamous
    I know and I am not arguing that. I am, however arguing, against

    it is an allegorical representation of what early Christians were facing every day of their lives. It was written that way as the Christian community had been driven underground was being persecuted relentlessly by the Romans. In brief, they were speaking in code for fear of being put to death.

    Revelations is a book of prophecy foretelling what will occur at the end of the age, a warning to the “churches” and what the end result will be.

  53. #89 Shannon:

    666 is the sum of the first 144 digits of Pi, after the decimal point.

    Don’t you think that’s a circular argument?

  54. Commentaries are fine but I temper what I read from other people by taking the time to read what is being commented on.

    I always start with the source. After decades of reading the Bible, 99% of the time I need no further help. With some of the apocalyptic books, Daniel and Revelations in particular, it helps me to read scholarly commentaries.

    The colorful imagery utilized in getting that message across is where we differ. It’s clear to me the author was speaking of real events happening to early Christians and was telling them to stay strong and wait for His return. You see a prophecy of a nuclear holocaust. I see a man clearly naming his persecutor using a code common at the time. You see predictions of a modern-day anti-christ.

    As we’ve both said, the prophecy of Revelations is Jesus is returning and you better be ready. There is no argument there.

  55. At this exact same moment in his term of office, Jimmy Carter had a 51% approval rating.

    Today, Gallup issued its rating data. Obama has a 43% approval rating and a 49% disapproval score.

    This is a very cool interactive page at Gallup in which you can compare different presidents’ approval/disapproval ratings at the same points during the life of their administrations. It is set on Obama and all you have to do is click on the photo of the president you want to compare with at the top.

  56. Ah, this is sweet. The Blind Boys of Alabama with Susan Tedeschi.

    One of the best things that’s happened to the blues lately is her union with Derek Trucks.

  57. At this exact same moment in his term of office, Jimmy Carter had a 51% approval rating.

    Watch out. According to the chart Truman had a 36% approval rating in April 1948.

  58. #92 Hammy:

    The colorful imagery utilized in getting that message across is where we differ. It’s clear to me the author was speaking of real events happening to early Christians and was telling them to stay strong and wait for His return. You see a prophecy of a nuclear holocaust. I see a man clearly naming his persecutor using a code common at the time. You see predictions of a modern-day anti-christ.

    1)What you fail to realize is the Divine Authorship of the documents in question. Both of the things you mentioned above are true at the same time, they are not mutually exclusive.
    2) In order to understand at a deeper level you must go to the original languages with the understanding of what the idioms were at that time. Greek was never an original language of either Old or New Testament Aramaic and Hebrew are it, anything else and you will lose meaning in the translation.
    3) Prophesies have a tendency to have multiple fulfillments. Pharaoh got a prophesy that a leader would arise from the Hebrew slaves so he ordered all the Hebrew male children killed. Herod got the same prophesy and did the same thing.
    I don’t trust the commentary of those who lived long ago and have become tradition simply because they are tradition. By your arguments and numerous comments on the subject:

    Far from being blind, I choose to take 2000 years of Biblical scholars’ interpretations into consideration over modern ones.

    you are blind to new understnding, or reasoning outside the confines of tradition.
    A great example of the language issue is the term weeks used in Daniel; shin-bit-mem it is translated as weeks but can also mean a period or group of seven or of 14; if all the “scholarly commentary” fails to consider the other meanings of weeks then you will not necessarily get the correct answer.
    Galilao found out the hard way that tradition has a tendency to rule over reason; he was correct in his understanding of the solar system, but he went against the tradition of the church and therefore he was in grave jeopardy of a torturous, painful death. He spent the rest of his life under house arrest and was only deemed correct by the church in this century.

  59. Caption:
    Wonder if I can use the “butt floss” in my thong to clean out the cracks in this sidewalk?

  60. I gotta tell ya Boney, when you get off on a Scriptural tangent, you can really try a Christian’s patience.

    I just make a concerted effort to remember that the lack of subtle voice inflection, facial expression and other communicative devices inherently lacking in digital conversation can sometimes make a debater appear different than he intended.

  61. #101 Bonecrusher:

    2) In order to understand at a deeper level you must go to the original languages with the understanding of what the idioms were at that time. Greek was never an original language of either Old or New Testament Aramaic and Hebrew are it, anything else and you will lose meaning in the translation.

    The question of whether Revelation was written in Aramaic or Koine Greek has never been fully satisfied. However, the are no existing first generation aramaic manuscripts. All of the original manuscripts available are in Koine. So, if you are reading it in aramaic, you are reading an aramaic translation of a koine manuscript – at best.

    I don’t trust the commentary of those who lived long ago and have become tradition simply because they are tradition.

    Nor do I! However, I do desire the guidance of scholars who have gone before. You do the same thing when you listen to the teachers and elders in your church. There is no difference, except that by being open to almost 2000 years of scholarship and study, by literally hundreds of wise and godly men I have access to a lot more wisdom. (There is wisdom in an abundance of council.)

    Galilao found out the hard way that tradition has a tendency to rule over reason

    Correct! And, if those in Galileo’s church had gone back and listened to what the wise men in the past had said, they would have found that men such as Pythagoras, Ptolemy, Eratosthenes and Plato had long ago discovered that the world was round. The problem was that the church in the 17th century was unwilling to be instructed by past scholars and so developed a very wrong view of the world and some real theological problems. Perhaps a cautionary tale?

  62. #97 Hamous

    Good Biblical discussion today. I hope no one was offended. I certainly wasn’t.

    What do you mean nobody’s offended ?

    Somebody has got to be OFFENDED !!!

    This is the internet, by Jove, and it’s a tradition.

    What kinda wimpy blog is this ?

  63. ………………………….buying 5 gallons of 93 octane fuel is SO simple by comparison! And the spiritual peace yielded is enormous……………….

    I do agree with Hammy RE: today’s discussions and in general tastefully maintained.

    simple ‘free will’ and ‘faith’ fully explain darn near any religious topic one can offer in my world

  64. Greek was never an original language of either Old or New Testament Aramaic and Hebrew are it, anything else and you will lose meaning in the translation.

    Why would Paul have written to the churches in Greece in a very minor and little-spoken language (especially by the people in Greece) instead of the primary language of the population of Corinth, Thessalonika, et al.? What about Romans?

    Paul, as an educated Roman citizen, would have been fluent in Greek. Peter, John, Timothy, and Mark as well.

  65. #106 texpat:

    If it will help, I’ll volunteer to be offended – just tell me who I should be offended by and how mad I should be. . . .

  66. #109 Wagonburner:

    Don’t forget Luke, he was a doctor. Don’t doctors have to learn Greek and Latin?

  67. I doubt anyone east of the Bosphorus spoke Latin. From what I gather most of the Romans (in the actual city of Rome) spoke Greek at home.

  68. #112 Pyro

    From what I gather most of the Romans (in the actual city of Rome) spoke Greek at home.

    I didn’t think that could possibly be true, but Wiki has some support for it. Eye-opening!

    from the 1st century BC, the spoken language of the Roman Empire was Vulgar Latin, which significantly differed from Classical Latin in grammar and vocabulary, and eventually in pronunciation.

    While Latin remained the main written language of the Roman Empire, Greek came to be the language spoken by the well-educated elite, as most of the literature studied by Romans was written in Greek. In the eastern half of the Roman Empire, which later became the Byzantine Empire, Latin was never able to replace Greek, and after the death of Justinian, Greek became the official language of the Byzantine government. The expansion of the Roman Empire spread Latin throughout Europe, and Vulgar Latin evolved into dialects in different locations, gradually shifting into many distinct Romance languages.

  69. This was a great essay by James Q. Wilson from 2002 shortly after the attacks of 9-11-01. He lays out the historical origins of religious wars and the final, exasperated birth of religious tolerance in Europe. Wilson was inspired by the intolerance of Islam and the eventual opposite, but unlikely, result in the West.

    I was saving this for another time, but it seems apropo given the day’s discussion.

    The Reform Islam Needs

    Lutherans, like Catholics, were governed by a priesthood, but Calvinists were ruled by congregations, and so they proclaimed not only a sterner faith but a distinctive political philosophy. The followers of Luther and Calvin had little interest in religious liberty; they wanted to replace a church they detested with one that they admired. But in doing so, they helped bring about religious wars. Lutheran mobs attacked Calvinist groups in the streets of Berlin, and thousands of Calvinists were murdered in the streets of Paris. In 1555, the Peace of Augsburg settled the religious wars briefly with the phrase cuius regio, eius religio—meaning that people in each state or principality would have the religion of their ruler. If you didn’t like your prince’s religion, you had to move somewhere else.

    But the problem grew worse as more dissident groups appeared. To the quarrels between Catholics, Calvinists, and Lutherans were added challenges from Anabaptists, Quakers, and Unitarians. These sects had their own passionate defenders, and they helped start many struggles. And so wars broke out again, all advancing religious claims overlaid with imperial, dynastic, and material objectives.

    In France, Catholics killed 20,000 Huguenots, 3,000 in Paris alone. When the Peace of Westphalia settled the wars of the sixteenth century in 1648, it reaffirmed the old doctrine of following the religion of your ruler, but added an odd new doctrine that required some liberty of conscience. As C. V. Wedgwood put it, men had begun to grasp “the essential futility of putting the beliefs of the mind to the judgment of the sword.”

    and

    There is no similar story to be told in the Middle Eastern parts of the Muslim world. With the exception of Turkey (and, for a while, Lebanon), every country there has been ruled either by a radical Islamic sect (as with the Taliban in Afghanistan and the mullahs in Iran) or by an autocrat who uses military power to enforce his authority in a nation that could not separate religion and politics or by a traditional tribal chieftain, for whom the distinction between church and state was meaningless. And the failure to make a theocracy work is evident in the vast popular resistance to the Taliban and the Iranian mullahs.

    But where Muslims have had to end colonial rule and build their own nation, national identity has trumped religious uniformity. When the Indonesians threw off Dutch rule and later struggled to end communist influence, they did so in a way that made the creation and maintenance of an Indonesian nation more important than religious or political identity. India, home to more Muslims than much of the Middle East, also relied on nationalism and overcoming British rule to insist on the creation of one nation. Its constitution prohibits discrimination based on religion and promises the free exercise of religious belief.

    As always, Wilson writes with exceptional clarity and wisdom.

  70. I don’t trust the commentary of those who lived long ago and have become tradition simply because they are tradition. By your arguments and numerous comments on the subject:

    Far from being blind, I choose to take 2000 years of Biblical scholars’ interpretations into consideration over modern ones.

    you are blind to new understnding, or reasoning outside the confines of tradition.

    I was trying to be diplomatic. By “modern ones” I was talking about the thousands of sects that seem to pop up on a weekly basis proclaiming theirs is the one true path based on the visions of some chucklehead with a Messiah complex.

    And I didn’t say I only trust 2000 year old Biblical scholars. I said I trust 2000 years of Biblical scholarship. You do realize the difference, right? There have been a lot of scholars over the last 2000 years.

    All I can say is keep looking for the signs of the apocalypse and waiting for the fireballs in the sky if you want but none of that is gonna save you.

  71. #116 Shannon

    We all know you ride around Washington County with your AR-15 hanging out the window picking off Calvinists out in their hay fields. They must be nearly extinct out there by now.

  72. Aramaic and Hebrew are it, anything else and you will lose meaning in the translation.

    By that reasoning, unless either Aramaic or Hebrew is your first language, you are translating it into English, thereby losing the meaning.

  73. Concerning theological arguments, Jews have about 4,000 years of debating, arguing and feuding over the meanings of prophecies and texts of the Torah, the tradition of the Talmud and the Midrash. Disputes over interpretation and meanings are the lifeblood of Jewish life and have given it the sustaining vibrancy and vitality it has maintained for these millennia.

    You ain’t livin’ if you aren’t arguing a point of contention.

  74. 117
    First the Calvinists.
    Then the Baptists.
    I figured I better start small.
    With a Baptist church every 5,280 feet, I’ll need to find a discount ammo source.

  75. 120 Hamous

    It could be a lot worse.

    I had a nightmare last night that Dallas waived Romo and Houston picked him up.

    /shudder

  76. One article says Delhomme spent the last two years of his career handing off the ball and throwing picks.

    Lovely.

  77. So who had the best caption for that picture? I was challenged and so I took on that challenge so what are the results?

  78. Did anybody else watch the Saints roll over the Giants last night ? The game had the flavor of an old Oiler game with Warren Moon throwing for 487 yards and 32 completions while only putting 16 points on the board. Manning had the same kind of night.

    I watched closely, though, the tricky and intricate offensive alignments and changeups of NO and was absolutely amazed at some of it. I have never seen some of that before. Pretty wild stuff. They did some things that looked like tightly choreographed stage dance routines. It blew the Giants mind. They didn’t know what to do.

  79. #125 RM

    so what are the results?

    You gave it a good shot, but Sarge beat you to the punch with his #4 Tooth Fairy.

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