Question


I’d like some input.  Send me an e-mail with a list of a few of your favorite worship songs.  If you go with a list of older songs, make them really old–like 1700s old.  Thanks!

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I won’t gush over DC for this post today.  If I let it go on too long, it’ll just be boring and everyone will think God help us if I ever go on a big trip!

After a long weekend with very little sleep, I woke up with a sore throat two days in a row.  I have this ridiculous trait that does that to me if I don’t get enough sleep.  So after Karen went to work (which is earlier than most of you are even awake) I went back to bed.  Sore throat’s gone for now.

Another beautiful day today in middle Tennessee.  I don’t think I ever want to leave here.  I went ahead and kicked on the air at my office.  When it starts hovering close to 80 degrees I figure it’s going to be uncomfortable for anyone who walks in the place.

The newscaster gave one of those teasers that baits you into watching out of fear that the warm weather may go on a short vacation soon.  I guess we are due a blackberry winter.  The grass is starting to grow as if it were mid-May so some colder weather will be nice to slow that mess down.

We leave for Florence, Alabama, Friday morning.  I’m still gathering information for the lecture I’m giving at the University of North Alabama.  It’s going to be on the historical-critical approach to 1 Corinthians.  So far I’ve spent a lot of time with Bart Ehrman’s Lost Scriptures and Jesus, Interrupted.  They’re must reads if you plan on becoming/remaining a Christian.

Besides content, the main things on which we’ll focus are the 3rd letter to the Corinthians, and the fact that Paul probably didn’t write any of the three books (letters).  Hopefully, the students will leave with a better understanding of a proper approach to the bible as a whole which will, in turn, help them study individual books without trying to connect one book to another as if it were a part of some larger story.

If anyone has any ideas for last minute research, bring it on!

Congratulations to all the Duke fans!  I lost interest when Tennessee lost to Michigan State.

Also, a huge shout out to my brother, Shane, who finishes his 28th year of life today and begins his 29th!  He and his wife have had a big year so far with the announcement of the soon-to-be-a-taxpayer, young ‘un named John Michael Mustain; due date: July 20th!

I guess I feel compeled to codify something a bit.  Very unlike me, I know.  When it comes to someone who is genuinely interested in the free exchange of ideas, I love conversation.  Unfortunately, I typically don’t have to care whether or not someone understands me because I rarely find myself in dialogue with somone who likes the questions more than the answers.  Most of the time when someone asks me to explain something it’s because I’m a target.  You’ve experienced that, too, I’m sure.  I used to engage in that kind of thing; heck, I used to feed on it!  Now I prefer to back out of situations where the person would rather debate.  Debate has its place, but not in the intelligent world where people are sincerely seeking and on the same side.  If your ideas stand, they don’t need tactics or volume or body language.  All you need is a mind — and the ability to communicate maturely what’s in it.  On a forum such as this one, however, I can’t be sure who is reading and I don’t want anyone to anchor their atheism in my words — that anchor won’t hold.  I believe that there is a God — one God.

The following is from an e-mail study group to which I am proud to be a party.  In it, and with them, I felt like I had to restate my issue.  To give you a little background, I proposed that the God of the OT could be different from the God in the NT.  The response was that of Jewish defense so I had to reiterate my point.  Often I fail in communication so it was by no means their fault.  Here is what follows, and, as always, please feel free to respond:

My primary concern is that I haven’t moved to a place that allows me to form theology. Sounds strange, doesn’t it?!

I used to have one. It was faulty and embarrassing. Actually, several have come and gone with the most recent one to vacate my premises leaving around 2006-07. I might have one now and not really know it, but I’m not sure how possible that even is.

Yes, the Jewish culture has a long, lustrous timeline filled with everything from abundance to captivity to war to tragedy to opulence [yes, I know I already said abundance, making opulence redundant, but the send button was quicker than my brain when I originally wrote the e-mail]. I don’t want to gush over them, though, because I don’t want to sound like the semi-racist who brags that “some of my best friends are black”–oh, yeah, well name ’em.

I do need to qualify my question from last week. I’m not saying anything bad about Jews by contemplating a two-god bible. I’m simply saying that the worldview of a captive Jew as he is being deported from Jerusalem in 597 BCE could easily inflate God’s powers and characteristics. If everything in the OT is literal and 100% true, then we may be dealing with a different God or an immature perception (both of which pose problems for those who look to the Bible as a sole source of information about God). I find I am more comfortable, in terms of logic, if the OT is more of a window through which we may take a look into the psychological needs that having a God met for them.

That being said, the real exhumed issue for me now is that of whether or not I can/should have/espouse a theology again. It’s a big deal because I don’t yet know on what I can base one.

——

So what do you think?  And while I understand that religion can be a deeply personal topic for many people, I’d like to read responses that take a sound, historical-critical approach.  Not to say that all responses aren’t welcome; it’s just that I’m looking for some pretty specific things.

I have no idea, none whatsoever, why I like these.

Current Book:
Ford County

Current Music:
Artists from Candyrat Records

Current Shame-Inducing Guilty Pleasure:
Sugar-Free Chocolate; it’s a guilty pleasure that induces a current shame in vapor-form. Oh, and Meme’s.

Current Colors:
Brown and Green; and that’s eternal

Current Obsession:
Madden ’10 (PS3)

Current Drink:
Diet Sun Drop; another eternal one

Current Song:
“Assassin”

Current Movie:
Just watched Law Abiding Citizen and have Up in the Air and The Hangover for the weekend

TV Show(s):
Lost and 24; also been watching WW2 in HD on the History Channel

Current Wish List:
Pressure Washer and a Brush Guard for the truck

Current Triumph:
Top 3 in my Fantasy NBA league

Current Bane of My Existence:
Glenn Beck

Current Goal(s):
A well-groomed flower garden

Current Blessing:
My wife

Current Slang or Saying:
“Well, there ya go”

Current Favorite Outfit:
Something clean

Current Excitement:
March Madness and my Fantasy Baseball league

Current Mood:
inquisitive