Thursday, April 30, 2009

Anyone need a dart board?

So a couple weeks ago I bought a lot of 5 dartboards on ebay. I did this because they were very cheap, and thought I could resell the four I didn't want no problem. But then I realized, it takes effort to sell stuff on ebay. So here I sit with five dart boards. Wanna buy one?

Overall they are good boards, the four available are all electronic dartboards with bristle coated buttons. Basically, this means that they are self healing, and can accept steal darts. They all work okay. Two have cabinets, and two do not. Some have the mounting hardware, others stick straight to a wall with screws. The cabinet ones are halex solstice 4.0 models, not sure on the others off the top of my head. Asking 15 dollars each (retail around 50) (and shipping if you are far away). Yes, I'm shameless.

On a completely unrelated note, I haven't been posting, nor writing out Genesis because my pen is still in the shop. I hope to post more once I get my pen back. Heck, I hope to write more once I do that. Until then, expect updates to be sporadic at best, shooting for one a week.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ichabod/Ebenezer. Where is the glory?

As I was doing my Wed. Bible study with will yesterday, we examined one of my favorite stories in the Bible. I had never noticed, before yesterday, the chocolate cookie stories betwixt which this one is smashed. My favorite story, of course, is the one of the Philistines and the ark. Basically, as a result of idolatry, the Israelites lose the ark (representing the presence of God). They end up making tumors and rats of gold, which is just plain awesome, and then send the ark on its way. The story has always captivated my bizarre, twisted sense of humor side . . . my biggest side.

Anyway, the story itself and the surrounding story all seek to contrast the evil high priest and his sons (Eli and Hophni and Phinehas). Here is a very basic chart demonstrating the parallels for what its worth.

Israel goes out to fight the Philistines, defeated (4.1-2)
Elders bring in the ark so "IT may save us" (4.3)
Eli and sons known for taking the best portion from the sacrifice (2.12-16)
Israel shouted when they saw the ark, scaring the Philistines (4.7)
In the second battle, Israel routed, losing 30,000 men (4.10)
Eli judged in comfort in his own town (4.12)
New name: Ichabod, "the glory has departed from Israel" (Phineas' son 4.21)
Gluttony (Eli and sons were fat and selfish)
Result: God favors the Philistines, shows mercy in how they handled the ark (ch. 5)

Philistines go out against Israel (7.7)
"Do not stop crying out to the Lord our God for us, that HE may rescue us (7.8)"
Samuel offered a whole lamb as a burnt offering, taking none (7.9)
God thundered against the Philistines, throwing them into a panic (7.10)
Samuel traveled and judged throughout Israel (7.16-17)
New name: Ebenezer, "Thus far has the Lord helped us."
Fasting (7.6)
Result: God's hand against the Philistines

Samuel also fulfills the role of redemptive judge, which is the pattern for judges. Not a single negative comment is made about his life as a judge, and he is known for standing up to leaders whether Eli, Saul, or David. One question to ask ourselves is whether or not the text was distorted for the sake of demonstrating this contrast. What do you think? Do you see other parallels I may have missed?

Friday, April 10, 2009


At what point did Christians start euphamizing the gospel? Is it still good news when it is wattered down and made socially acceptable?

I ask because honestly, the language throughout the Bible is far from the poetry in motion the King James makes it out to be. New translations are even worse (youtube pisseth against a wall while your at it). Jesus had harsh things to say. Paul had even harsher things to say, but we get so caught up in making the Bible palpable that we don't allow it to speak prophetically into our broken lives. The same man who said "let the children come" said "you brood of vipers". The man who wrote "if anything is praiseworthy, think of these things" wrote (in the same letter) "I consider everything Skubalon compared to knowing Christ. Skubalon is the greek word to describe the most socially unacceptable version of "feces". It's quite literally the S word in both languages. We translate such a descriptive, vile word to "garbage". Biblically, filthy rags of righteousness are menstrual cloths.

Thinking on these things begs to ask the question, are we ashamed of the gospel in all its vividness? Do we ride the human story through the highs and lows like a roller coaster traveling at breakneck speed?

Do we tell the truth, or make it attractive?

Can we tell truth without becoming sensational for the sake of shock value?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Episode 3.2 All fall down.

If we look at the Bible as a narrative, with definitive "episodes" or sub-chapters, here is what we have so far in the first Chapter (Genesis). 1) Adam and Eve with associated exploits. 2) Noah as an act of God's redemption. 3) The Babel Generation.

In the previous post, we saw the first mention of the city. This city is an archetypal city throughout the Bible as humans' attempts at becoming completely autonomous. That is, we build cities to become gods. The city is Babylon (or Babel), which is described throughout the Bible as a pagan city. Whether this Babylon, Babylon of the 6th century BCE, or the Babylon of revelation, Babylon is humans attempts at creating apart from God.

God steps in here (literally "coming down to the city"), and confuses the people. He actually directly causes division, which is odd considering that God designed us to be in communion with one another. What has happened through the lenses of grace, is that humans have substituted the God-human relationship with the human-human one. As a result, God redirects our attempts to fulfill ourselves back towards our need for Him. The city is abandoned and scattered.

Babel means confused . . . which has so many levels here. Simply meditate on why God chose to preserve the name of the city thusly. What comes to mind?

Next, another genealogy. Another "to be continued". Finally, an introduction to the next episode. Abram, the man. As the story goes on, "God's chosen family" becomes a smaller and smaller portion of society due to our own actions. Be prepared for this trend to be reversed throughout the New Testament (with Pentecost being Babel Part II, the reversing of the tide). The introduction here would be a montage set to music with either headlines or memories if it were a movie. Crude background information rushed in to shed light in later sub-plots.

P.S. Check out Holy Trinity, a remixed modernized version of Gregorian Chant.