Renewing 'Christ and Culture': 9-3-09
The Holocaust by bullets: 9-5/6-09

Faithful medical care: 9-4-09

As some of you know because you attended, last Sunday I moderated a panel discussion about how faith communities can and should approach the issue of health care reform.

Medcross

It was not meant to be a politically focused event but, rather, a way for people of faith to hear from other people of faith about how their own faith traditions inform their thinking about health care.

I began by telling the 250 or so people in attendance that as a Christian "I hold the view that every individual is of inestimable worth and deserves to be treated with respect and dignity." I also said that "I believe each individual should live in ways that respect his or her body, whcih Christians have been known to call the temple of the Holy Spirit."

Each speaker then offered his or her perspective on the subject.

In the handouts, one of the organizers had put together various statements about health care from a wide range of faith communities. What I found so intriguing about that was the common ground so many shared. From the African Methodist Episcopal Church to the Buddhist Peace Fellowship to the U.S. Conference on Catholic Bishops and beyond, there came an almost universal cry for good and affordable health care being available to all Americans.

So today I just want to link you to a few statements (and other resources) about health care from faith communities so you can see that common ground for yourself (acknowledging that the denominational structures do not always speak for all members):

* African Methodist Episcopal Church

* American Baptist churches

* The Presbyterian Church (USA)

* The Buddhist Peace Fellowship

* Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism

* The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

* Contrast the bishops' statement with one issued recently by the two Kansas City area Catholic bishops. That link is to a story about it. To read the statement, click here. (A reader asked the other day whether either of these bishops was invited to be on the health care panel I moderated last Sunday. I don't know. I had nothing to do with organizing the event or with who was on the panel. I was merely asked to be the moderator.)

For more from various religious viewpoints, click here and then click on the faith community that interests you.

No acknowledgement of this common ground means we all agree on how to get from here to a satisfactory and economically sustainable health care system. But it's worth noting the common values so many of us seem to share.

* * *

THE WORST OF THE BIBLE?

Someone has put together this list of the alleged 10 worst passages in the Bible. This was both a foolish and a wise thing to do. It was foolish because it offers Bible passages without context. In other words, it is quote-mining, proof-texting, cherry-picking. The reader can have little or no idea what these passages may have meant to the author or to the original audience. Thus, they are essentially meaningless. But it was wise in that such foolish exercises sometimes lead people into serious study of the Bible so they can begin to make sense of some of these difficult passages. They might even lead people to learn that they need to do careful exegetical work to understand scripture. But my guess is the list mostly will be used to make fun of the Bible, an easy task for people who don't get it or respect it.

* * *

P.S.: Until Tuesday, Sept. 8, my Internet access will be sporadic at best. That means a long time may go by between you posting a comment here and it being published. Thanks for your patience.

* * *

ANOTHER P.S.: Please plan to join me and my co-author, Rabbi Jacques Cukierkorn, at one of the two upcoming (Sept. 10 and Sept. 13) events described here to launch our new book, They Were Just People: Stories of Rescue in Poland During the Holocaust. Rainy Day Books will be there to help you buy a copy and you'll even get to meet some of the people whose remarkable stories we tell in the book.

Comments

Dolores Lear

Translating the books of the Bible, that have been handed down from before the Planetary Noah/Atlantis Flood when most Life was lost, not a Local MidEast Flood where Noah landed.

It is surprising as to how all these books, and others added since 300, were accepted, as the Gospel Truth.

There are many versions of these Truth Writings, many not used, and as many New divisions of the Roman Catholic Religion began, not all writings were accepted by the different Catholic, Protestant, and Other 'Jesus as God Religions' began.

All the supernatural events, have been translated in many languages, so the meanings may have been changed to fit each understanding, and a new Denomination began. Especially Protestant.

But most people, even if they accept a Supernatural beginning of Gods, Goddesses and Angels Life on Earth, they also accept Evolution as a Natural beginning of Life Species from Algae up to Human, and today finally Evolved up to Human High Tech Science.

So are the Gospel Books from 6000 years of Humans as we Know them, or About the Evolution of Humans from Algae for millions of years? Does the Bible tell us so?

Now Is It Time to again Translate all Old Writings and Myth, with our High Tech Science Knowledge today, of Human Colonization of a Planet, and Human High Tech Reproduction of Humans and Animals in a High Tech Lab. Supernatural?

Was the Garden of Eden a High Tech Lab of our High Tech Human Ancestors, Translated God/Us in Genesis, who made Human Adam and Eve Equal Purebred Clones in their Human Image?

Will Graham

Bill, excellent points about offering Bible passages without context. Quote mining and so forth is the standard tactic of the atheist trolls who like to cruise religious blogs.

I always thought it was ironic that even though the local atheists had a discussion board at the "Free"thought site that was well set up, they couldn't keep in going and it failed. Twice.

The last time it degenerated into a board for displaying advertisements for pornography.

Nevertheless, they seem more interest in hanging around religious blogs of all types than maintaining their own efforts.

I guess its their form of atheist evangelism.

memberofKCFreeThinkers.org

Adam said, “But it fails, because he can simply assert that aliens did it! Igor has in fact made that claim elsewhere, and Cole says he share in it.”

Actually, the alien egg theory was mine. Little seeds. You should pay attention. It is quite useful in the natural, real, world.

You are welcome Delores, but Iggy posted it several days ago. I just like keeping up with Spong. He’s a colorful character. –makes me laugh….

Adam said, “Cole, I have met atheists who hate Christians, and you know it sport!”

I never said there aren’t atheists who hated Xs. I said I didn’t know any. You need to pay attention, football.

I don’t hate any X. I merely feel they have been misled.

Adam said, “Spong is an atheist; of course that will be denied but at least Cole admits he is no Christian.
Just another collaborating traitor.”

Deist, atheist, not sure there is a lot of difference.

Traitor, huh? Should he be punished?

Adam said, “And there is a lot of genocide going on that is not called genocide.”

I will have to agree with you on that. The people who killed the Native Americans didn’t call it genocide, but we do now.

A theist, I mean Just Thinking, no I mean Jim, no I mean a theist replied to my question, “"But I am curious by what a theist means by 'Not exactly.' Please enlighten us, sir, and explain that statement."
Why?”

Why not? Lets go have a beer.

Looks like everybody cherry picks. Xs pick the best parts and Atheists the worse-

Point is; the bible was written by people, bronze age people, not a mysterious fickle old man in the sky with little winged helpers to talk with you.

It doesn’t matter what we cherry pick. There are better sources for morals. The golden rule, not originally from the bible, is good enough.

Lets move toward the REAL natural world.

Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole

IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org

Speaking on "taking Biblical quotes out of context" - here is a bit different take - "Idaho court won't remove pre-Nazi swastika tiles"
http://www.kansascity.com/440/story/1422539.html
Here is the photo of the actual swastika - http://snurl.com/rlohy

While I agree that "historical context" is important when it comes to the Bible, the most "glaring" historical context is the "scientific" and "historical" approach to the Bible as the book of literature. Recently, at a Bible study "Joshua" was presented by the Bible leader as "contemporary" book - which appears to be full of BS - 8-7 century BC is the most wide concensus in the "logical" community of scholars. PBS had a great documenary (it's online) - "The Buried Secrets of the Bible" about how the Bible was "molded" through the "exile era" of the Jews in Babylonian captivity and a local godly war lord "YHW" being a "divine inspiration" to the Jews for their god YAHWHEH. By the way, did you know that "historically" Yahweh had a wife - there have been many statuettes found in the cities that Joshua supposedly "conqured"? - many have went into decline over 500-800 years and not 20 years as Joshua supposedly waged wars?

If Christians believe in "invention" and base their lives on it (e.g. no historical and archeological evidence of Exodus) what else can the "craziest" ones believe in? - evil secular governemtn? Obama is not a Citizen? Death Panels? No equal rights for every citizen?
___________________
"Just Thinking", where are you?

Cole this morning mentioned your name, and I have to admit you just fell of the face of the Earth (the Earth is flat you know?) I have been missing you, Just Thinking, your Biblical quotes to support "any position" you hold.

I have been missing and "crying in the dark" for your mention of "certain non believers" who have no knowledge of biology, physics, chemistry, astronomy, etc. thus proving that god is hiding on the "quantum mechanical level?" - i.e. god is getting smaller every time or more and more invisible.

In absense of you posting, I'll have to assume that Hannibal Lector cloned you a new brain and you are no longer a "crazy" Christian? Yes, it has to be, otherwise, you'd be fullfilling your "false god's" mandate.

adam harrison

Cole, or member, or Igor, or whoever, your alien idea is hardly original; I read it on atheist sites over six years ago.

And you keep talking about the NATURAL world, while you type on a computer...computers do not appear in natural world, they are intelligently designed.

And what are you going on about "sources of morals" for? You are a moral relativist, who likes to quote Nietzsche.

His is Nietzsche's moral view:

"Elimination of the weak and defective, the first principle of our philosphy. And we should help them to do it!"

Nietzsche, the AntiChrist, sec. 2

Dolores Lear

Iggy:
"to the Jews for their god YAHWHEH. By the way, did you know that "historically" Yahweh had a wife - there have been many statuettes found in the cities that Joshua supposedly "conqured"?"

That goes along with my acceptance that God/Us were Male and Female Clone Humans, our High Tech Ancestors from Space, that Colonized Earth, and reproduced the Adam and Eve Clones, in their Image.

Genesis 1 is the High Tech Outline of Colonizing a Planet.

With High Tech Translations, there is so much mystery that could be solved about the Supernatural Creation of Life on Earth, and Supernatural Reproduction of Perfect Humans in Genesis 1,2.

Genesis 1:26. KJV. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:" God said let 'us', not 'me' or 'he'.

Genesis 2:21,22. "And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man."

Today we call this supernatural act, High Tech Cloning. And we do put people into a deep sleep for operations, with High Tech.

Gods, Goddesses and Angels/Messengers, were Higher Human Beings, than the Body Birth Humans Beings.

Scripture and Myth are thrilling to accept for Truth, with a High Tech Translation of our Past Supernatural History.

Susan

Bill, I agree that a lot of those Bible verses were taken out of context -- also it's interesting how people will quote things that "happened" in the Bible, as if their mere "happening" meant God condoned them -- i.e. the concubine who was given to the crowd and died.

But one verse that got quoted, doesn't seem much improved even when you put it "in context." It's one of the verses about women that I was actually nattering about here for a while (1 Timothy 2:12). Here it is in context --

"Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression." 1 Timothy 2:11-14

The conservative Christians here have never really responded to the verse in context. One or two of them tried to say that the context was that Paul just wanted to protect the women from the intense persecution the Church was going through at that time. When I pointed out that Paul gave his rationale in verses 13-14, they seemed to be at a loss for words.

I guess I'll get accused, again, of ignoring the historical context. And yet I am TOTALLY willing to pass this off as Paul just being a product of his culture, as we all are to some extent. And I agree with the conservatives that Paul also wrote a lot of truly wonderful things, such as I Corinthians 13. The conservative Christians are the ones who want to uphold every thing Paul wrote in these letters as Holy Scripture.

adam harrison

Why does KCF go on about equal rights? One of the most famous atheists in history did not believe in equal rights. Karl Marx said, "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs."

I am sure he remembers Karl, the guy whose philosophy turned his homeland into such a paradise that he couldn't wait to get the hell out and get to Overland Park, Kansas! Hahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!

And who makes that determination? The government. That is not the same as the Declaration Principle, that "all men are created equal", now is it?

ATHEIST LOGIC, if Just Thinking is not posting, then he is no longer a Christian.

O.K.!

And that means, if KCF ignores our posts, e mails, or phone calls, then HE IS AGREEING WITH US!

(Note: if you don't answer that last sentence, I will have to assume you agree! Hahahahaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!)

IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org

Gender-neutral Bible: a verse-by-verse comparison - interesting... We are now "witnessing" "evolution" of the Bible in real time. Newly propsed TNIV will eliminate about 3,000 references to "gender" and will become "more gender inclusive". "Watering down the word of god" to "go with the times".

A look at the original text, which is being restored, and its gender-neutral version:

Psalms 8:4 NIV: What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?

Today's New International Version: What are mere mortals that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?

Matthew 7:4 NIV: How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?

TNIV: How can you say, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-talk-gender-neutral-boxsep04,0,5598481.story
____________________
Here is more from Penn & Teller's "BullSh.t" - Bible and Creationism - each episode has 3 segments

I enjoyed "Creationism" - deals with new clothing for it - "Intelligent Design"

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Penn+%26+Teller+on+Creationism+GodIsDellusion&search_type=&aq=f
____________________
ATHEISTS ATTEND ANOTHER BIBLE STUDY -

Monday 7 p.m.
TUESDAY 6:00 P.M.

Please, e-mail iggykc@gmail.com for more information.

Dolores Lear

Bill:
"I believe each individual should live in ways that respect his or her body, which Christians have been known to call the temple of the Holy Spirit."

The Temple, of the Holy Spirit is our Physical Body, made of Atoms. The ElectroMagnetic Force/the Holy Spirit does make a Human Physical Body Alive.
Or as Religion calls it Body and Soul.

When the Breath of Life/Soul leaves the Body, of any Species, they die. High Tech Science can explain the Religious Descriptions written by Humans, without High Tech Science.

But we do have High Tech Science today. And Humans should translate all Supernatural Religious Writings and Myths, with a High Tech Explanation.

Supernatural Creation translates as High Tech Colonization.
The God/Us in Genesis called Spirit 'Being's, are High Tech Human Male and Female Clones that did Reproduce the Adam and Eve Helpmeets by Reproducing the Female from the Male Rib. Not Supernatural today, but High Tech Cloning.

The Religious teachings of Everlasting Life After Death in Heaven, is Eternal High Tech Birth with High Tech Regeneration with High Tech, on Planets and in Spaceships.

Humans Know today that when we Die our Body Elements return to the Elements that make up the Solar System and the Universe. Without this interchange of Elements there would be No Universe made of Elements.

From this Start of High Tech Knowledge explaining Religious Scriptures and Myth, many of the Supernatural Mysteries of Life on Earth, can be Solved today, including the Holy Spirit/Breath, and High Tech Eternal Human Physical Life After Birth, the Body and Soul of Religion.

Dolores Lear

Bill:
(Meeting) "a way for people of faith to hear from other people of faith about how their own faith traditions inform their thinking about health care."

How many faith traditions inform humans about their health care? Most are about their Life After Death in Heaven, where all will be Alive in Perfect Bodies. No pain, sorrow, crying, etc. Only Peace, Equal Sharing, and Happy.

Why not teach this on Earth, like Jesus did, with Equal Sharing of Resources for All members in his Celibate Male Movement?

Do Religions teach Members, and people of faith hear from other people of faith, about their Government Health Care?

Are most members of faith, from the different Parties of Government, that each have a different Health Care Plan? Would this cause dissent among Church Members?

Which Government Party gives Equality to All Citizens, Religious or Atheists, Rich or Poor? Only Retired Humans get Equal Coverage from the Government, and then they can also pay more premium and get better Care than Other Citizens. Why?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pledge_of_Allegiance

What happened to "indivisible, with liberty and justice for all" USA Citizens? Was this only since the early 1900s, when this Pledge was made Legal for All Citizens in Government?

Why does the USA like all Religious or Atheist Countries, have Billionaires and Needy Citizens? How does the USA Government give Justice and Equality, and Health Care for All Citizens? By Being One Nation, Under God? Which God?

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)