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Robert W. Funk, 1926-2005

We are going to inquire simply, rigorously after the voice of Jesus, after what he really said.
Robert Walter Funk, who died September 3, was the founder of the Jesus Seminar and one of the most influential New Testament scholars of his generation. The Jesus of Nazareth discovered by the Jesus Seminar was a wisdom teacher whose parables proclaimed the arrival of God's kingdom. He was not, in the judgment of the Seminar, the messiah of the end-times (.pdf file, go to page 5 and 6). Also: Funk's 21 theses.
posted by matteo on Sep 26, 2005 - 34 comments

I never knew the Bible could be so funny

I encountered The Queen James Bible recently while searching for something else completely on Google. Since then, I have been looking for parodies of the Bible and have encountered several. Some are older and filled with conspiracy theories. Some are just plain bad. Some are effectively vaporware (with it's contemporary commercial sibling). And then some are just really funny. (Be sure to check out the Begat Tree.)

Of course, looking for this sort of thing will always bring up random bits and pieces, most notably the Bible according to Cheese (kind of like the Brick Testament) and Don't Dis Ejisha (flash).
posted by Hactar on Aug 28, 2005 - 12 comments

Cosmic Dancer

Did the Devil bury dinosaur bones to trick people? No longer the Devil's handiwork, dinosaurs are being embraced by Christians, who have reclaimed them for Jesus.
posted by The Jesse Helms on Aug 27, 2005 - 110 comments

Curse you Mr. Fantastic, and your pal Jesus Christ too!

The Antichrist Checklist : The most recent entry in Slacktivist's extremely insightful and entertaining series on mocking and deconstructing the Left Behind books. Being written from the perspective of a non-fundie Christian just makes it even more powerful. Slacky reveals how manufactured the cooked-up, hacked-together "prophecy," that fuels the series is. If you believe all that nonsense, and can make it through this series with your wacky premillennial dispensationalist beliefs intact, then I'm sorry but there is no hope for you.

Highlights of this week's installment, the best I've seen in a while: the antichrist, the paucity of the biblical evidence for him/it, and this sentence: "The composite sketch derived from all these descriptions yields a portrait that looks a little like Nebuchadnezzar, a little like Antiochus Epiphanes, a little like Nero or Diocletian, and a little like Victor von Doom."
posted by JHarris on Aug 19, 2005 - 24 comments

A mime is a terrible thing to waste

Gospel Mime to the EXTREME!!! Only the power of Jesus can help you escape from the box! Breaking though the barriers of religion and tradition, K&K Mime Minstries electrifies!
posted by Robot Johnny on Aug 12, 2005 - 34 comments

Metacrockfilter

Metacrock is a Texan warrior-academic who's well-known as an apologist on many Christian and atheist forums. I've had hours of fun trying to rebut the modal ontological arguments he promotes. Lazy atheists who are used to arguing with more naive flavors of Christianity will soon find themselves overwhelmed by Metacrock's relentless logic and philosophical scholarship. However, he's the furthest thing from right-wing fundamentalism you can find among Christians and you might find yourself agreeing with his points much of the time or at least being surprised by them. (pardon the spelling, it's not his strong suit)
posted by fleetmouse on Jul 19, 2005 - 118 comments

Taking that "Peace Be With You" Stuff Seriously

Why does the National Council of Churches hate America? The NCC -- a coalition of 36 Christian denominations -- makes a firm statement against the war in Iraq: "This year our nation is at war as we observe the 4th of July, a day that honors those founders who spoke out for independence from tyranny. Today in Iraq a cruel dictator has been deposed, yet the suffering of the Iraqi people continues. Mandated elections have been held, yet the future of Iraq remains as uncertain as ever. Day by day the cost of this war for the United States, for Iraq, for peace grows clearer. No weapons of mass destruction have been found; no link to the attacks on September 11, 2001 has been shown. It has become clear that the rationale for invasion was at best a tragic mistake, at worst a clever deception." Mainstream Christians are starting to take back Christianity from the theocrats.
posted by digaman on Jun 30, 2005 - 74 comments

Bibliture

Reason #48713 for teaching the Bible in schools: "The classics of British and American literature are filled with biblical allusions that would be lost on a reader without basic knowledge of the Bible"
posted by afx114 on Jun 22, 2005 - 200 comments

Catholicism

Some MeFites have expressed an interest in learning more about the Catholic Church's positions on abortion, the death penalty, and other issues. I hope you will all find these links interesting and enlightening. The people and the Church. But, what about how other Christians see Catholics? Can Catholics respond to these claims? Of course, some claims have to be taken with a very large chunk of salt. Some Christians are even changing their minds. Though there is no single kind of Catholicism. Finally, here is a source for further research.
posted by oddman on Jun 21, 2005 - 58 comments

Behind the scenes at TBN

"So I just went buck wild Jesus style on them!" What really goes on behind the scenes at TBN. (Some flash, some NSFW language.)
posted by pxe2000 on Jun 9, 2005 - 11 comments

Christian Video Games set to make comeback?

Christian Video Games set to make comeback? Tired of destroying the same old cliched monsters, day in day out? Want to engross yourself in a more morally sound, Religious video game experience? Well if the Christian gaming community has their way, we'll soon all be playing them (or at least a few % of gamers): "As believers in Christ, we pray that God will be glorified through our work and that each of us draw nearer to him as we develop and grow as a business," the Christian game company says
posted by 0bvious on May 24, 2005 - 57 comments

Something about Mary

Mary, quite contrary The Christianity Today weblog offers a fabulously dense post (pegged to this recent UK news story) about the Protestant embrace of Mary. Lots of fascinating links - including one from the blog of the President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary - will bring you up to speed on "the 'Protestants and Mary' deluge of the last three years." Hours of provocative reading for anyone interested in Christian sects.
posted by mediareport on May 23, 2005 - 25 comments

Porn-again Christian

'I haven't seen a porno film in 20 years or more. No need to. I got my wife'.
Harry Reems tells about his struggle to survive Deep Throat.
posted by matteo on May 22, 2005 - 17 comments

Evangelicals in America

Earthly Empires: How evangelical churches are borrowing from the business playbook - "The triumph of evangelical Christianity is profoundly reshaping many aspects of American politics and society... This year, the 16.4 million-member Southern Baptist Convention plans to 'plant' 1,800 new churches using by-the-book niche-marketing tactics. 'We have cowboy churches for people working on ranches, country music churches, even several motorcycle churches aimed at bikers', says Martin King, a spokesman for the Southern Baptists' North American Mission Board... Many of today's evangelicals hope to expand their clout even further. They're also gaining by taking their views into Corporate America. Exhibit A: the recent clash at software giant Microsoft."
posted by kliuless on May 15, 2005 - 35 comments

"Family Values, My Ass!"

"Family Values, My Ass!" That article in the Lexington Herald-Leader inspired me to look up the Nation article it referred to. Now I'm beginning to see why many women won't go to "evangelical Christian" MDs: this guy Hager (previously brought up on MetaFilter in 2003, in fact twice, and then again in 2004) is strongly anti-abortion -- so pro-conception that he tried to keep the "morning-after pill" known as "Plan B" away from women -- but he's apparently pro- sodomy and pro-rape. It almost sounds like fiction.
posted by davy on May 13, 2005 - 86 comments

I guess this means proms are unholy

What's wrong with dating? everything. And those two hellbound teens look so happy, too.
posted by longsleeves on May 12, 2005 - 114 comments

616, The Number of the Beast

616, The Number of the Beast.
posted by tranquileye on May 5, 2005 - 37 comments

See no evil

"Censorship does not keep us from doing evil—it just blocks us from seeing it." A (to many, probably surprising) Christian perspective on smut-removing DVD players and other forms of censorship.
posted by ubernostrum on May 3, 2005 - 36 comments

Just a Ruse?

Are evolution's advocates giving fire to creationists? So says Michael Ruse, "philosopher of biology (especially Darwinism)", who claims that outspoken evolutionists (e.g. Richard Dawkins) should do more to make evolution compatible with religion, rather than touting it as a worldview of its own.

Tell that to Nosson Slifkin (NYTimes, login required), an Orthodox rabbi whose books were banned by a number of eminent rabbis for "seek[ing] to reconcile, rather than to contrast, sacred texts with modern knowledge of the natural world."

That said, will those like Slifkin and Rev. Dr. Arthur Peacocke be able to make a difference, or will they be ignored and scorned?
posted by greatgefilte on May 3, 2005 - 82 comments

benedictXVI.com

BenedictXVI.com registered a few weeks ago by our very own rcade. He hedged his bets by registering six domains in all, and now is being called out for popesquatting.
posted by riffola on Apr 19, 2005 - 64 comments

Hare lips can kiss, or so they say...

Jake Thackray doesn't have a lot of fans but the fans that he does have are loyal and devoted.

A dominant inspiration to the modern English Chanton music scene, from the end of the sixties until the early eighties, Jake was never off the television as resident troubadour on shows like the Braden Beat, and That's Life A schoolteacher and a devout Roman Catholic, his songs express an openness and tolerance for dissident sexualities that is rarely associated with modern Christianity. [more]
posted by PeterMcDermott on Apr 15, 2005 - 29 comments

Book describing US teen religious beliefs

"Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers" documents the findings and authors' conclusions from interviews conducted across 45 states.
A major theory in this study is called Moral Therapeutic Deism, a rather simplified belief system in which:
"God wants little more for us than to be good, happy capitalists...and to be good, happy capitalists, we should be good, unless if being good prevents us being happy." via via
posted by peacay on Apr 5, 2005 - 13 comments

Alexander the Corrector

The Man Who Unwrote the Bible. In the mid-1720s, Alexander Cruden took on a self-imposed task of Herculean proportions: he decided to compile the most thorough concordance of the King James Version of the Bible (777,746 words). The first edition of Cruden's Concordance was published in 1737. Every similar undertaking before or since has been the work of a vast team of people. Cruden worked alone in his lodgings, writing the whole thing out by hand. Cruden's day job was as a "Corrector of the Press" (proofreader). He would give hawk-eyed attention to prose all day long. Then he would come home at night to read the Bible—stopping at every single word to secure the right sheet from the tens of thousands of pieces of paper all around him and to record accurately the reference in its appropriate place. He had no patron, no publisher, no financial backers: his only commission was a divine one.
Cruden's Concordance has never been out of print. A new book tells the tale of Alexander the Corrector's bizarre, sad life (scroll down to about half page).
posted by matteo on Apr 3, 2005 - 10 comments

The Pope is dead

Its official, Pope John Paul II has died at age 84 in Vatican City. "The Holy Father died this evening at 21.37 in his private apartment"
posted by SirOmega on Apr 2, 2005 - 327 comments

My Uncle Is A Man Named Steve (Not A Monkey)

"The purpose of the Fellowship Baptist Creation Science Fair is to get kids excited about Creation and motivate them to discover the truth of our Lord on their own."
Winning exhibits this year include "My Uncle Is A Man Named Steve (Not A Monkey)", "Women Were Designed For Homemaking", and "Using Prayer To Microevolve Latent Antibiotic Resistance In Bacteria".
Via
posted by Mwongozi on Mar 24, 2005 - 74 comments

"The Last Days of Judas Iscariot"

What About Judas? Dante condems Judas to eternal damnation in the darkest, deepest circle of hell. But what if someone came to the great traitor's defense in a trial to win his entrance into heaven? The playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis imagines just such a scenario in "The Last Days of Judas Iscariot," directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman and running at the Public Theater in New York City. More inside.
posted by matteo on Mar 24, 2005 - 21 comments

Parent's Guide to Anime

A Parent's Guide to Anime includes a few hundred informative and opinionated reviews, organized by rating. Found via this thread at the Christian discussion site Arts & Faith, whose users included Waking Life, Bad Lieutenant, Life of Brian and Fight Club in their list of the Top 100 Spiritually Significant Films.
posted by mediareport on Mar 21, 2005 - 26 comments

Freak Out For Jesus!

Jesus Freak Rock of the 60's & 70's. Rising out of the post-hippie "Jesus Freak" culture, many of the adherents were disenchanted counterculturists or just plain casualties of the time. Many of the musicians were already rockers before converting, so they were comfortable with the idiom, and it seemed to be more about sincerity than political propoganda. Compared to today's CCM corporate juggernaut it seems positively guileless.
posted by jonmc on Mar 20, 2005 - 20 comments

Follow the Leader

"I felt like hurting someone before, now I feel like hugging people". Only weeks after professing his belief in Jesus Christ, former Korn guitarist Brian “Head” Welch was baptized in the Jordan River last Saturday. With “Jesus” tattooed across his knuckles and “Matthew 11:28” along his neck, Welch received full immersion in the historic river, along with 20 other white-robed Christians from a Bakersfield, CA church. Welch said the ritual baptism, “washed away his anger.” "My songs are God saying things to me, him talking to people. He's going to use me to heal people and people are going to be drawn to it, just watch, they will be.” For the latest information (and a free mp3) go to Welch's personal website, http://www.headtochrist.com/
posted by matteo on Mar 10, 2005 - 148 comments

Christian Charity?

Maggie's Cancer Caring Centres provide beautiful surroundings in which cancer patients and their families can learn to adjust to living with the disease. You'd think an organisation called Christian Voice would support them, but the group instead chose to bully the charity into turning down the proceeds from a gala performance of Jerry Springer, The Opera (which they believe to be a deeply offensive work), pretending to be helping them avoid a scandal, while threatening them with protests outside their centres around the UK.
posted by jack_mo on Feb 23, 2005 - 17 comments

Holy Solar Powered Bible, Batman!

Nearly half of the world's population cannot read. Many people live in remote areas without electricity. But that's no excuse for being non-Christian, right? What would Jesus' marketing department do?

Introducing the GodPod. (Who knows... if it's successful, maybe Apple will make that Billy Graham iPod after all!)
posted by miss lynnster on Feb 2, 2005 - 33 comments

Church of England

Learn to Pray
posted by Pretty_Generic on Jan 25, 2005 - 21 comments

Mmm, church and state, mmmmmmm.

Uhoh. Tony Blair's new Education Secretary Ruth Kelly is almost certainly a member of masochistic Catholic cult Opus Dei, as featured in The Da Vinci Code.
posted by Pretty_Generic on Jan 24, 2005 - 52 comments

"We sometimes employ religious language to talk about the historic influence of faith on our country."

Creating Bush's God Talk by Michael Gerson, Bush's chief speechwriter. According to University of Washington professor David Domke, author of "God Willing? Political Fundamentalism in the White House, the War on Terror", here's how Bush's God-Talk Is Different ("When Bush speaks of God, he positions himself as a prophetic spokesperson rather than a petitioning supplicant".)
Bonus: "On What Did They Solemnly Swear? Which president opened his inaugural Bible at random in haste? Which didn't swear at all?". Test your knowledge of presidential inaugural Bible use with this quiz.
And: Prayers of the Presidents -- From George Washington to George W. Bush, a sampling of personal and public prayers of America's presidents.
posted by matteo on Jan 20, 2005 - 14 comments

Christian License

When a developer asks 'don't use TYPO3 for NewAge publications, anti-christian messages, sexually explicit material, extreme political propaganda' , would you use the software? Would you respect his wishes?
posted by dprs75 on Jan 7, 2005 - 86 comments

Christians make AIDS fight a high priority

The Church Awakens "The AIDS pandemic is the greatest humanitarian crisis," Casey said. "It just begs a reaction from the church." The church is now in full reaction mode. More than 2,000 Christian medical professionals, church leaders, and students gathered for the ninth annual Global Missions Health Conference, November 11-13, at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky. They spoke not only of statistics that confirmed the extent of the pandemic (43 million people living with HIV/AIDS; 8,000 deaths each day; 14 million orphans), but of working together.
posted by halekon on Dec 21, 2004 - 62 comments

Annual airing of grievances

The War on Christmas. "What we are witnessing here are hate crimes against Christianity." Angered by perceived attacks on the Christ part of Christmas, Christians are taking a page from GWB and staging pre-emptive cultural strikes around the country. Or are they? Is this effort a bigger attack against Judaism and the rest of the nonbelievers/scapegoats, an honest attempt by Christians to "save" the holiday, or a media-manufactured controversy? (Air out your holiday spirit, but save your own personal grievances for December 23.)
posted by mrgrimm on Dec 16, 2004 - 212 comments

God save me from ur ppl!

Don't put a restraining order on God the toughest challenge of living in a democracy is to respect the freedom of other people to live according to values that are not your own. Real freedom, however, does not thrive in a moral vacuum (the ardent secularist) or a moral straightjacket (the ardent theocratic). What does my ideal of democracy look like? I can sum it up in a single sentence: A person arrives at faith freely, practices it openly, and uses dialogue with others about their own life path to deepen their understanding. another interesting read from the same webpage: God is not a Republican or a Democrat: the Religious Right does not speak for you. Remind America that Jesus taught us to be peacemakers, advocates for the poor, and defenders of justice.. this article is a little dated, but it is relevant for people who choose to accept Jesus as the Christ but do not want someone's political agenda attached to their belief system.
posted by Hands of Manos on Dec 9, 2004 - 127 comments

Should Christ be kept out of Christmas?

Christ out of Christmas Have the retailers won the war on Christmas over the religious folks? (WMP)
posted by dov3 on Dec 3, 2004 - 67 comments

The Communion Cheat

Another EXTREEM! version of christianity. But this one's funny because it trades in The Clash's imagery and denies it. Contrast the in-your-face, Jesus-to-the-max logo with Westway to the World, a documentary about The Clash (the title sequence in the film has the "roughened" quality of the church logo). Naturally, a church this hardcore and bullshit free has to have a way to reach the kids. That vehicle is Clash Radio, which is not to be confused with Radio Clash. To be fair, it does look like this radical pastor's done some hard livin'. Every cheap hood strikes a bargain with the world, right?
posted by Mayor Curley on Nov 28, 2004 - 34 comments

Declaration of Independence Banned at Calif School

Declaration of Independence Banned at Calif School? WTF? That's what I thought when I first read it. I read more and again I said: WTF? This can't be right! So, I looked around a bit and I realised some people had already a different perspective on this.
posted by acrobat on Nov 25, 2004 - 38 comments

Lord, please make me a werewolf today

This site is dedicated to spreading the Gospel in the werewolf and furry communities. It also gives advice on how to P-shift and explains why he doesn't like role playing games. Quote - "I have Jesus to change me into a dragon and create neat lizard people to assist me in heaven." Words fail me.
posted by pyramid termite on Nov 20, 2004 - 81 comments

A Tale of Two Christianities

Born-again liberal Christians. Do you think that mainline denominations are hemorraging members? Wrong. Fundamentalist Christianity is the way of the future and all US Evangelicals worship the same political party? Not so fast, buddy. Many scholars and theologians think that it's time for liberals to take Christianity back. Oregon State's Marcus J Borg, for example, argues that Christianity "still makes sense and is the most viable religious option for millions". He contends the earlier paradigm, based upon a punitive God, simply doesn't work anymore for too many people. It is an argument for an alternative to the literalist and exclusivist tradition that has dominated Western Christianity in the modern era. According to Borg, "So different are these two views of Christianity that they almost produce two different religions, both using the same Bible and language. A time of two paradigms is virtually a tale of two Christianities." There is, for example, an alternative view to the Resurrection Narrative not as report of an actual, physical event but as means for Jesus' early followers to express the miracle of his continuing spiritual presence among them, after his execution. It is in short an 'emerging paradigm which has been developing for over a hundred years and has recently become a major grass-roots movement within mainline denominations'. Just don't be afraid to ask questions. Not even about the dogs beneath the Cross. More inside.
posted by matteo on Nov 19, 2004 - 100 comments

Peace, not gays most important

Liberal Christian groups start a poll war challenging the evangelicals claim to the Christian vote publishing findings that the war and poverty were more important moral issues voters than Iraq. Other views at The Washington Post (subscription required), and The Catholic News
posted by KirkJobSluder on Nov 11, 2004 - 18 comments

researched by a #mefi - (waiting for his account) mefite

I was born in NY in the late 60's, and moved to PA in 1985. I'm a Christian, a Klingon, a vegetarian, and a real nice guy with a firm and conservative moral standing.


posted by me for dnab from #mefi
posted by kamylyon on Oct 4, 2004 - 29 comments

Religion

Redemption and the Power of Man. In Christianity, redemption is essentially an act of divine grace, the salvation of a sinful humanity that is incapable of saving itself. In Judaism redemption depends entirely on man, who is responsible for his own fate. To what extent did Judaism influence the development of progressive, pluralistic democracy?
posted by semmi on Sep 22, 2004 - 30 comments

OMG

Alas, the new iMac cannot bow before the cross. "At best, it can only give a downward nod or an upward look, and that would just communicate half-hearted politeness rather than an attitude of worship." So says the editor of the Christian Macintosh Users Group. Love Jesus, but not Jobs? No problem - this list of Christian computer users groups has you covered. And hey - Neo/Luddites? Even if you've left the web behind, the web hasn't left you behind.

MeFites, when you're not bowing before the blue, what's your favorite site that melds the sacred with the techno-profane?
posted by stonerose on Sep 13, 2004 - 17 comments

The Passion of the Krishna

There appear to be many similarities between the lives of Krishna and Jesus Christ. Exploring the linkage between the two does make one wonder whether the similarities are coincidences or for a very good reason.
posted by riffola on Sep 10, 2004 - 22 comments

Calling all Hot Women of the LORD!!!

Hello, my name is Tamara! As you can probably tell, I'm a Christian who loves Jesus and cares for all humans, even the wicked. What you probably don't know is that I'm hot.
posted by loquacious on Aug 19, 2004 - 68 comments

Mosaikker

A million little pieces. The University of Oslo -- Norway’s largest and oldest institution of higher education -- has put together a very interesting page with amazing images of the (5,000 years old) dying art of Mosaics. Among many master-pieces (heh, sorry, couldn't resist the bad pun) we can admire the Empress Theodora from S. Vitale in Ravenna, the starry sky in Galla Placidia, the Virgin Mary and the famous Jesus of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, St. Peter in Hossios Lucas. There's also the St. Anna of Chios, the harrowing of hell of St Mark's in Venice. Scroll down, at the end of the main page there's a lot of good external links. (more inside)
posted by matteo on Aug 3, 2004 - 7 comments

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