God is not an ass. (Love as much as you can.)
In the mail the other day, I got a scary brochure entitled “Revelation Today: The End Time Is Near.”
Apparently, the Reverend Myckal Morehouse has an important message for me. He was prepared to provide free admission, free parking, free childcare, and free study materials so that I could listen to him detail how the Bible predicts that the end of times is near.
I have read the Bible, I have read many scholars’ understandings of this book, and I have prayed about it.
Two things I know for certain about the Bible:
- The Bible is not a Nostradamian prediction book about the future.
- Sure there are people who will tell you that it has made amazing predictions about some things in the past 2000 years, but I can also find you people who will tell you the earth is flat and that they don’t fear Vampires because they have never seen one.
- The prophets of old expressed truths about the immorality of the day and predicted their civilization’s downfall. And, their civilization did downfall. It just wan’t in most any of their lifetimes.
- (2) The Bible’s central message isn’t hate, it’s love – love for the oppressed.
- Count the number of times love and the less fortunate are asked to be protected
- Learn of how (1) the other cheek, (2) walking the second mile, and (3) giving your second garment were acts of sedition and brilliant fighting power with love. (My mini-course.)
- Eisegesis = Reading in
- Exegesis = Taking out
…the apocalyptic fervor of the Branch Davidians; the mystical disciplines of Julian of Norwich and Hildegard of Bingen; the insistence upon full immersion in water and in Spirit among the Baptists; the charismatic healing of revivalists, whether under tents or on television; the political activism of Liberation theology; the ethics of Albert Schweitzer and the compassion of Mother Teresa; the compulsive socializing over meals, whether in the formal liturgy of the Mass or in covered-dish suppers in churches all over the world.