The story was fake -- an outrageous, impossible lie involving a massive evil conspiracy. The millions of people spreading it couldn't possibly believe it was true, even as they insisted that it determined their voting decisions. And yet their disingenuous enthusiasm for spreading the story meant that its inflammatory lies eventually reached the ears of a disturbed individual -- someone with a history of erratic violence who heard this tall tale, believed it, and loaded his guns.
If you wrote something that was half in poetry and half in prose, you'd probably have a good reason why you made that choice. You'd mean it to mean something. The same was probably true for whoever wrote the book of Joel, but what that choice meant for them is, to us, a bit of a mystery. (Plus: Suggestions wanted for a First Testament iTunes playlist.)
"He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty."
Think some awful thoughts and say some awful words and don't think no more about reforming. Take up the wickedness of liberation, and if you can think of anything worse, do that, too. As long as you're in, and in for good, you might as well go the whole hog.
A president doesn't need a deep, personal understanding of every nuance of every complex international issue. He just needs to have people around him who do have such an understanding. And then -- and this seems to be the vital, missing piece for Donald Trump -- he needs to listen to those people and pay attention when they tell him what he needs to know.
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Wherein Buck and Steve watch TV, a couple of comic bits fall flat, and Nicolae tells the Beave, in detail, about his plans to bring the U.N. into accord with premillennial dispensationalist numerology.
"The commandments are summed up in this word, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law."
So evangelicals believe that most people die without ever being born. And for evangelical Christians, death means Heaven or Hell. Evangelicals don't have the comforting elastic consolation offered by some notion of Limbo or Purgatory for unbaptized Pagan Babies. It's simply Heaven or Hell. So where do these "people" go?
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If you're fired in disgrace for covering up a gang-rape, you can still get a job at Liberty University. Also: Landlords who fail to even supply stable land; burning a flag is not as offensive as shredding the Constitution, but it's still not cool; a rare misdemeanor for Alabama's felonious GOP; and it's not just sicko Calvinist preachers who want to punish women when a pregnancy ends.
Concordance-ism doesn't ask us to read the Bible. It asks us to "look up" things in the Bible -- to consult the Bible without reading it. I would say this is a terrible, terrible way to read the Bible, but, again, it's NOT reading. And it often winds up being terribly misleading.