If you ever doubted that Bill Maher thinks Christians (or someone of any religion) has a 'neurological defect', you'll hear him say it clear as a bell in the below video. Maher is right about a number of things he says - for example, his comments on radical Islam vs. other faiths - but he does indeed get plenty wrong such as the statements about adhering to Old Testament law today, etc.
Monday, May 03, 2010
Today while driving, I was one-two cars behind another car with a bumper sticker that read: “God Favors No Groups, Only Religions Do That.”
My first question was: how does he know that? What is his source for that assertion? Did God appear to him and tell him that, is there some holy book he’s referencing for that claim and if so, where did the writer of that book get his/her information? Where does his idea for that kind of god come from?
Second, if this god is one who values truth and dislikes error, it would seem that such a god would favor groups who favor no groups like he/she does. But then that would defeat the whole premise of the bumper sticker’s argument.
But perhaps the most interesting thing was watching the driver with bumper sticker in action. He, along with myself and many others, were in two sets of lanes that merged into one lane for a freeway onramp. Now, everyone mostly displays courtesy in such an arrangement as it is expected cars will have to merge into the one lane and drivers normally follow a one-in-then-me-then-one-in approach.
Not our boy.
He hugged the bumper of the car ahead of him and stubbornly refused to let in another driver who was expecting normal courtesy, even going to the extreme of forcing the driver literally into the opposing lane of oncoming freeway traffic. He then began making well-known hand gestures out his window to the other driver.
There’s some good religion. I wonder what his god thinks of that?
Saturday, May 01, 2010
“for the sons of this age are more shrewd in relation to their own kind than the sons of light.” (Luke 16:8)
I’ve been an executive and engineer in the software industry for a long time now, and I get to meet many customers and see first hand how they’re using the technology that the various companies I’ve worked for produce. I’ll never forget one meeting I had with some clients in England during a conference I was speaking at. These guys produced a web site and notification service designed especially for helping people cheat on their spouses. They used the database my company made to drive all their systems. I remember one guy telling me the biggest issue they were currently trying to work around: finding a way for the spouses of their ‘customer’ to not see the various text messages their system sent to the customer’s phone.
As a Christian, it’s depressing to listen to such stuff. For every customer like CaringBridge that used my company’s database, there were 10x more companies that were gambling sites, porn distributors, and other type outfits. A recent CNN story described how, just days after the iPad was released, one of the world's biggest porn companies claimed it had created a way to stream its videos onto the device, skipping the Apple store and its restrictions on salacious content. The story says, “The announcement illustrates a widely acknowledged but seldom-spoken truth of the technology world: Whenever there's a new content platform, the adult-entertainment industry is one of the first to adopt it -- if they didn't help create it in the first place.”
In Luke 16, Jesus tells an interesting parable about a steward who is caught by his master for squandering his assets. Once the truth has come out, the steward begins to make new plans and devises a scheme to create an indebtedness between himself and those who owed his master so that when he was officially removed from his master’s premises, those he assisted would be obligated to take him in and provide for him in some fashion (as was custom back in the first century).
A puzzling part comes when the rich man praises the steward for his actions. Why would the rich man do such a thing? The answer is that it rounds out the story quite nicely with respect to the types of individuals portrayed in the parable – all are wicked/unrighteous people – the steward, the dishonest debtors, and the rich man himself, which is shown by his admiration for the plan his former steward had developed. This being the case, the rich man certainly cannot represent God or Christ as some have taught.
Jesus then makes the observation that the unrighteous people of the world make the most of every opportunity given them in this life to benefit themselves as they interact with those around them, but that the righteous people of God do not have the same opportunistic attitude when it comes to carrying out the kingdom business of their Master.
Rather than a new accomplishment from the porn industry, how much better would it have been to see a CNN story about how a new Christian technology firm created a streaming video mash-up that enables Christians to view and download the latest video messages presented each Sunday from all the top theological minds from across the world right to their iPad?
Lots better. Unfortunately, the sons of this age are more shrewd in relation to their own kind than the sons of light.