Greg Boyd on why you should not buy the “Patriot’s Bible”

July 16, 2009

Below is a reproduced blog post of pastor/theologian Greg Boyd on the Patriot’s Bible-it is a creatively cogent and funny response to this dangerously idolatrous Bible which mixes American nationalism with Christianity.

The Patriot’s Bible — Really?

May 8th, 2009

Have you ever seen the Saturday Night Live skit entitled “Really? With Seth and Amy”? Sometimes it’s pretty funny. I was thinking that perhaps the best way to get through my critique of The American Patriot’s Bible (henceforth Patriot’s Bible) would be to give a “Really?” type report on it.

I want to preface my “report” by saying I am certain the commentators behind the Patriot’s Bible are well intentioned, godly scholars who believe they’re doing the Kingdom (and America) a great service. Despite their noble intentions, however, I believe this Bible is, frankly, idolatrous, dangerous and profoundly damaging to the Kingdom. I feel compelled to denounce it in the strongest possible way I can. The sarcasm that follows is intended for this purpose only.

Here’s some “really?” reflections, in no particular order.

* The Lord’s statement that Moses “is faithful in all My houses” (Num. 12:7) calls for a boxed quote from Grover Cleveland about how the teachings of Christ “results in the purest patriotism…”

Really? Oddly enough, Christians for the first three centuries of the church were persecuted for being unpatriotic. They wouldn’t pledge allegiance to the emperor or fight to defend the empire. Now Jesus becomes the champion of patriotism. Really? Does this hold true for Russians, North Koreans and Iranians, or just Americans? And how on earth did we leap from a verse about God’s “houses” to the topic of patriotism in the first place? Really?

* In 2 Corinthians 10:5 Paul notes that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but are spiritual and mighty in God for the tearing down of strongholds. This inspires the Patriot’s Bible commentators to provide the reader with a historical note about Eisenhower signing into law the clause “one Nation under God” into the Pledge of Allegiance. Eisenhower is quoted as saying this clause would help “strengthen those spiritual weapons which forever will be our countries most powerful resource in peace and war.”

Really? Do you really think Paul – who taught us to give our enemies food and water and to never retaliate (Rom. 12:14-21) – would approve of having his authority borrowed to buttress up America’s resources in war? Really? Doesn’t this verse explicitly say he’s not talking about earthly wars and that our weapons are not carnal? Oh, and by the way, the Patriot’s Bible leaves out “not carnal” in their commentary’s quote of this verse. Really? Read the rest of this entry »

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Episcopal Church Votes to Allow Homosexuals to be Ordained as Priests and Bishops

July 15, 2009

Resolution D025 passed by a 2-1 margin at the General Convention of The Episcopal Church (America), which will allow homosexuals to be ordained to the episcopate and the presbyterate. This is a very American move-by that I mean that us Americans have in our DNA a anti-authoritarian, “no one is going to tell us what to do,” sort of spirit. This is a sad move as there are still many faithful, orthodox Anglicans in the TEC. I hope that they will feel welcome in transitioning to the ACNA, (the new orthodox province of N. America) if that is what they choose. Questions now abound as to how the Archbishop of Canterbury will respond and whether or not he will now recognize the ACNA as being THE faithful, orthodox body/province of N. America and grant them full standing into the Anglican communion. As one author put it, “It was the best of time, it was the worst of times.”

To read Bishop of Durham, N. T. Wrights response in The Times, go here.

Moreover, the Church of England’s General Synod will be debating entering into communion with ACNA in September.  For more, go here.


Jesus & Paul

July 13, 2009

One of the really cool perks to being a Research Assistant to a NT scholar is that I occasionally get whatever books he either 1) has read and no longer needs, 2) has extra copies of, or 3) doesn’t want. One of the 3 books that I received today was Michael F. Bird’s Introducing Paul. Besides being one of my favorite bloggers, Michael Bird is a great scholar who is really engaging in his writing [and by the way-I didn’t receive the book b/c it wasn’t any good or b/c this particular professor did not like it, in case you are reading Michael!].  His material is extremely relevant and lucidly presented, and this book (intended as an introduction to Paul for college students) is no exception. Below is an awesome (& rather hilarious!) tidbit that I came across today concerning the strangeness of Paul’s claims to first-century hearers. We would all do well to remember how unusual the claims concerning Christ are. It is easy for us to this side of 2000 years of Christian history to see the Christian claims as “old hat.” Bird writes:

Imagine you are walking through your local university or college and hear in the quad an elderly man from South America telling people loudly about God’s love and salvation. He announces the ‘good news’ of Carlos Hernandez. He recounts hous Carlos was a Peruvian peasant attestedy by man might deeds of power and miracles and who proclaimed the end of the world. But the chief men in the city of Lima feared his popularity with the peasant class, falsely accused of being an Al-Qaeda terrorist and had him killed by electrocution. But a week later, this Carlos was raised from the dead and was seen by several American tourists. Then the man declares that ‘this Carlos was electrocuted for your sins and salvation is found through faith in him’. And then, to make matters worse he starts singing:

Carlos was there on that horrible chair

They tied him down with bolts and then zapped him with 40,000 volts

It was for you our saviour fried and died

Despite the fact that his chair caught on fire, this one is God’s true Messiah

The wisdom of the world has been refuted because Carlos was electrocuted

He is my saviour and my lamp, because he absorbed every deadly amp

Now I know that God does care, ’cause he sent Carlos Hernandez to the electric chair



Currently Reading…

July 7, 2009

Render to Caesar by Christopher Bryan-Ben Witherington said this was one of the best NT books of the past 10 years.

Christianity Beyond Belief by Todd Hunter-Todd has been influenced by N.T. Wright and realizes that Christianity is not about Sin and going to heaven. He is also great at making theology very practical for preaching! This is a good read for someone who has not read much of Wright.

The Lost History of Christianity by Philip Jenkins-Awesome book! This is a must read for any student of Christian History!!!

JUST IN!!!

Atheist Delusions by David Bentley Hart-Just read the first chapter of this book. It is looking like this will be one of my top 10 books of the year!!!

Sacramental Life: Spiritual Formation Through the Book of Common Prayer by David A. deSilva-Have not begun this yet…but the intro made it sound really good. If it is anything like any of his other books, it should be pretty good!


Liber Antiquitatum Biblicarum quote

July 1, 2009

For part of my thesis I am currently working on a detailed study of sayings by the Patriarchs in Pseudo-Philo’s Liber Antiquitatum Biblicarum.  I came across this statement by the two faithful spies sent out by Moses which I thought was pretty cool:

Just as hard iron can overcome the stars, or as weapons conquer lightning, or thunder is extinguished by the arrows of men, so can these men fight against the Lord!

-LAB 15:2


Bear Grylls…a Christian.

June 23, 2009

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See this interview on the ALPHA UK website. This is pretty cool!

And here is a link to his book Facing Up


The Future of N. American Anglicanism

June 19, 2009

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Next week, I have the great privilege and honor to represent faithful Anglican churches throughout the Rocky Mountain Network of the Anglican Mission in the Americas as I will be attending the formation of the new Anglican Church in North America by being a lay delegate to the provincial assembly.  This is a nothing less than a highly significant historic event and I am unable to describe how excited I am to be a part of what God is doing in this movement.  I was at a conference this past week and got to talk to Todd Hunter (who was elected a “missionary bishop” this past Saturday-he has a vision to plant 200 churches on the West Coast), church planters, and other faithful Anglican priests including the pastor of Christ Church Plano, Fr. David Roseberry.  We will see what part I might be able to play in this movement as my wife and I are looking at opportunities in both the academy and in church planting.  Please pray for us as we seek to be participate in the building of God’s Kingdom.

Blessings!

Go here to see the ACNA website.