Friday, April 3, 2009

April 3, 2009

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)



While I was eating really good pizza at Sabatini's in Exeter, Pennsylvania during spring break, some bytes between bites that provide inspiration/indigestion by bias were overheard.

Democrat: "Are there any Republicans who really care about the poor?"

Republican: "Are there any Democrats with traditional American values?"

Independent: "Democrats and Republicans goosestep to whoever's in charge of their parties."

Socialist: "I really like the way things are going in D.C. these days."

Moi: "This is why I never needed acid to trip out."



I saw Easy Rider at least a dozen times.

It's still one of my favorite soundtracks; though I lost it in the Agnes disaster of 1972 when the Susquehanna River flooded Wyoming Valley and swept away so much more than my LPs, eight tracks, and baseball cards.

Music aligns the heart.

For example, when I listen to Sarah Brightman, Grace Slick, Joni Mitchell, or Alanis Morissette, my mind wanders, uh, away from, uh, holiness.

Speaking of bytes/bites, temptations are bad things that taste good; which, of course, is why I still listen to 'em every now and then.

I don't pretend to be perfect.

I know I need a Savior.

Thank You, Jesus!

Anyway, I'll never forget Wyatt (Peter Fonda's "Captain America"), Billy (Dennis Hopper's hopped-up simpleton/heathen), and George Hanson (the alcoholic ACLU lawyer portrayed by Jack Nicholson in his first major film role); especially that scene linked above that continues to haunt me/us.

Wyatt became the archetype of the poet-biker in search of America's soul; and bikers have shadowed him ever since.

Billy was just a drugged-out-live-for-today-because-he-had-no-clue-about-tomorrow kinda guy; and I see his reincarnations among more and more folks of all ages who are gasping for some heaven on earth as everything seems to be going to hell.

George was close but confused.

Some metaphors are timeless.


Speaking of recycled illustrations of total depravity, Webster has caught up with the culture again; changing the definition of marriage to include same sexers: "1 a (1): the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law; (2): the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage..."

Mainliners are increasingly, uh, up for it; and most allow it or don't bother those into, uh, it.

Though Freud, Paul, and my dog Kopper know some things are extra-natural, I still remember the last great president of my seminary and the World Alliance of Reformed Churches who responded to my question about this/that kinda stuff back in 1979 when I returned to my alma mater to give some $: "Any damn fool can see the parts don't match up."

Though I really don't think our Lord loses sleep over guys and gals making out - though I hear there's a big market for videos of the latter among even the, uh, straightest of he-men - I can't get, uh, up for all of those rationalizations of evolved/devolved behaviors only enabled by redefining traditional values concomitant to God's intentions as revealed in Jesus and Holy Scripture.

It's true.

You've got to reimagine Jesus and Holy Scripture to come up with this stuff.

It must be acid or something really, uh, diabolical.



Staying with re-imaginings, redefinitions, and sloppy agape, my SBAC (sharing, bearing, accountability, caring) group just read Rob Bell's Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith; and while Bell ain't no Moltmann, Rahner, or even Joel Osteen, he does manage to capture attention in a confusing kinda way.

While his theology resonates with the ozone layer of reality and provides assurance/comfort for folks with two feet planted firmly in the air, we concluded he's got a lot of important considerations/condemnations/challenges for today's mainliners/sideliners; for example, "All we care about is trying to live and teach the way of Jesus."

That's another way of echoing Kung: the agenda for today's church is "to discover what is permanent...originally meant before it was covered with the dust and debris of two thousand years...This is not another gospel, but the same ancient gospel rediscovered for today!"

He does say some strange things: "We must keep reforming the way the Christian faith is defined, lived, and explained."

It's never really clear whether he means substance or style.

But if you're in one of those churches that fear anything happening for the first time, this book will stretch you to the possibilities of the newer ways of the Holy Spirit to reach the culture with the gospel.

Kathie's gonna make it available to you on the right even if you're coming from the left or, uh, farther right.



I'm not afraid to discuss anything; and I only get mad when people are mean to other people in the process.

Like Bell, Kung, and others trying/praying to be faithful, all I care about is trying to figure out who He is for me right now before then; and I'm praising Him for erring on the side of grace over law.

That's why I don't lose sleep over people who hate me in a Christian kinda way.

I'm free, man.

I gospel; but if folks don't want to hear about the real Jesus of the New Testament as opposed to reimagined/redefined versions, they can, uh, go to...

That's their choice.

Even my wife understands that.

About seven years ago, a friend called her: "I'm concerned about your husband. He's upsetting a lot of folks in the denomination by saying the emperor is naked. He's got to be a little more politically sensitive to..."

My wife interrupted, "You've got to realize he doesn't care what you or me or anybody else thinks about what he says or writes. He only listens when people point out how he's wrong according to Jesus and the Bible. He doesn't waste his time with people who try to be political with Jesus."

My daddy taught a valuable lesson to me that has been a guiding principle for all of my relationships: "I don't take time to be with people who do not want to take time to be with me. I don't need to be with people who don't want me around. There are plenty of other people who want to spend time with me. If they don't like me, I can live with it and without them."

It's like the woman who left our family of faith not too long ago after I extolled her in so many ways and went out on the limb to support her despite some serious spiritual reservations.

She said, "If you'd like to know why I've left, I'll tell you."

I said, "No, I'd rather spend time with folks who want to grow together in, through, and for Jesus."

Unlike my wife, she didn't get it/me.

It's nice to be understood every now and then; of course, I really don't...

I care about the souls of people.

I care about people who say they love Jesus loving like Jesus.

I have all the time in my calendar for people who really want to pray/talk/debate about how to love Him by loving like Him.

That's why I spend so much time in the hospitals and local coffee houses; and, uh, so little time in mainline clergy meetings.

It's really rather simple for me/you: "Ecclesia reformata, semper reformanda secundum verbum Dei!!!"

The short version: Romans 12:1-2.



Getting back to confusion/lies, I still can't figure out the connection between PBHO's rhetoric and administration.

I think there's a big clue in the following pictures:

You gotta go to to see 'em!!!


Blessings and Love!

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