Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Freud and the Old West: A Short Discourse on the Nature of Techno

Just FYI, this'll probably be my last post for a couple of weeks. As some of you know, I'll be in the States for two really super events taking place during the next ten days, and I'm guessing I might not have much email access. So please forgive me in advance for being incognito.

In the meantime, I leave you with this totally-unrelated-to-my-post but amusing quote from Curt Niccum's blog:

"Music has made a significant impact upon me in the last twenty-four hours. Perhaps this stems from the fact that I was lulled to sleep late last night by the constant thumping of the techno music broadcast from the neighboring hotel room. For those of you unfamiliar with this genre of music, picture fifty Sigmund Freuds hitting their heads on a brick wall in unison on beats one and three to a fast dance rhythm while fifty cowboys expectorate into brass spittoons and one hundred children rub heavy grit sandpaper on a chalkboard on beats two and four. Now, that describes GOOD techno. What I heard definitely never made that category."

--Curt Niccum, posted on July 8, 2005

Friday, July 22, 2005

cursing Christians?

Somewhere out in the big, wide world of Blogland, in someone else’s blog, I ran across a post entitled, “Why do We Swear?”, discoursing on whether or not it is acceptable for Christians to curse. Some commentors responded with yes, some with no. Some said that words are only words and don't matter; some said that God's grace covers all sins, even cursing; some that how we speak has nothing to do with loving Christ.

My thoughts on the matter are as follows:

Words do matter. Words do have meaning. And words can hurt. Even worse than sticks and stones. Ask an abused person if words are just words. Ask an abused child if it didn't hurt him when his parents cursed at him. Ask an abused wife if it didn't hurt her when her husband cursed at her.

II. Peter 2:11-12 and 3:15-16 tell us that as Christians, we represent Christ on earth.
Titus 2:6-8 tells us to exercise self-control, and specifially mentions "sound speech."
James 3:5-14 tells us how destructive words can be, and that cursing does not come from a pure heart.
Ephesians 4:29 tells us that our speech should be for building others up and giving grace to those who hear us.
In Matthew 12:35-37, Jesus himself warns us that our words come directly from what's in our hearts. And that we will be accountable to God for every word that we speak.
I. Corinthians 10:31 reminds us to glorify God in everything we do.

When I think about whether or not swearing/cursing/cussing/whatever-you-want-to-call-it is right for a Christian, I have to ask myself this:

Do I show self-control if I curse?
Am I building others up if I curse?
Do I want to stand before God one day and give account for every bad or negative or discouraging word that I have ever spoken?
Will nonbelievers glorify God because of me, if I curse in front of them?
Am I glorifying God if I curse?

Being a Christian is a process of spiritual growth. I pray for wisdom, that God will change my heart, so that I will not even curse in my thoughts. With God's help, I eradicated cursing from my speech a long time ago, but it's still in my thoughts sometimes. I know that God forgives me for these sins...but I still pray for his guidance and his wisdom, so that I can allow his Holy Spirit to change me fully into the kind of person he wants me to become.

The kind of person who glorifies him in every deed and every thought.

According to God's Word, it is not okay for a Christian to curse. But according to God's Word, he forgives us our sins, and he will help us to wipe them out. If we stop willfully sinning (Heb. 10:26); if we stop using God's grace as an excuse to do what we want; and if we make up our minds to submit to his will and let him change us.

Ed has a blog!

Just thought you all should know. Check it out:


And it has a cute address, too! ;o)

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

something stupid

Want to find out what Courtney really believes? Then check out this nutty “church quiz” I did online. If I believe the results of this quiz, then I must conclude that my faith is schizophrenic at best. Or maybe I have “Multiple Faith Disorder.” At any rate, I apparently don’t think at all the way I thought I think. But here are my results, so you can understand what I’m talking about:

You scored as Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan. You are an evangelical in the Wesleyan tradition. You believe that God's grace enables you to choose to believe in him, even though you yourself are totally depraved. The gift of the Holy Spirit gives you assurance of your salvation, and he also enables you to live the life of obedience to which God has called us. You are influenced heavily by John Wesley and the Methodists.

Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan: 82%
Fundamentalist: 61%
Reformed Evangelical: 54%
Neo orthodox: 43%
Emergent/Postmodern: 43%
Roman Catholic: 29%
Classical Liberal: 29%
Modern Liberal: 18%
Charismatic/Pentecostal: 11%

What's your theological worldview? created with QuizFarm.com

Good thing I’m more Roman Catholic than Anything Liberal or Pentecostal. I’d hate to think my depraved self is anything less than something highly traditional.

Good grief, Charlie Brown. :oP

Monday, July 18, 2005

two random gripes

1. Chessworld is slow tonight, so moving on my boards is a bit frustrating.

2. It's almost midnight, and I'm hungry.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Announcing Free Drinks

For anyone who's interested, I just started a second blog. You can view it here:


This new blog will be my place to post my notes from Bible lectures, seminars, classes, sermons, etc. Since I seem to enjoy taking down practically every dot on every i that the lecturer, teacher, or preacher voices, my notes are what one would call copious. They come in handy on occasion, so I thought someone else might find them useful. If not, that's okay, too.

Feedback on the notes is welcome (especially if I'm wrong about something!) but not obligatory. ;o)

Friday, July 15, 2005

Biblical Scroll Fragments Found In Israel

By DANIELLE HAAS, Associated Press Writer
2 hours, 41 minutes ago

JERUSALEM - A secretive encounter with a Bedouin in a desert valley led to the discovery of two fragments from a nearly 2,000-year-old parchment scroll — the first such finding in decades, an Israeli archaeologist said Friday.

The finding has given rise to hope that the Judean Desert may yield more treasures, said Professor Chanan Eshel, an archaeologist from Tel Aviv's Bar Ilan University.

The two small pieces of brown animal skin, inscribed in Hebrew with verses from the Book of Leviticus, are from "refugee" caves in Nachal Arugot, a canyon near the Dead Sea where Jews hid from the Romans in the second century, Eshel said in an interview with The Associated Press.

The scrolls are being tested by Israel's Antiquities Authority. Recently, several relics bearing inscriptions, including a burial box purported to belong to Jesus' brother James, were revealed as modern forgeries.

More than 1,000 ancient texts — known collectively as the Dead Sea Scrolls — were discovered between 1947 and 1956 in 11 caves overlooking the western shores of the Dead Sea.

"No scrolls have been found in the Judean Desert" in decades, Eshel said. "The common belief has been that there is nothing left to find there."

Now, he said, scholars may be spurred on to further excavations.

Archaeologist and Bible scholar Steven Pfann said he had not seen the fragments. If authenticated, they would "in general not be doing more than confirming the character of the material that we have from the southern part of the Judean wilderness up until today."

But "what's interesting and exciting is that this is a new discovery," Pfann added. "This is the first time we've seen anything from the south since the 1960s."

Eshel said he was first shown the fragments last year during a meeting in an abandoned police station near the Dead Sea.

A Bedouin said he had been offered $20,000 for the fragments on the black market and wanted an evaluation.

The encounter both excited and dismayed the archaeologist who has worked in the Judean Desert since 1986.

"I was jealous he had found it, not me. I was also very excited. I didn't believe I would see them again," said Eshel, who took photographs of the pieces he feared would soon be smuggled out of the country.

But in March 2005, he discovered the Bedouin still had the scroll fragments. Eshel bought them with $3,000 provided by Bar Ilan University and handed them over to the Antiquities Authority, he said.

"Scholars do not buy antiquities. I did it because I could not see it fall apart," Eshel said.

The finding constitutes the 15th scroll fragments found in the area from the same period of the Jewish "Bar Kochba" revolt against the Romans, and the first to be discovered with verses from Leviticus, Eshel said.

The Dead Sea Scrolls were written by the Essenes, a monastic sect seen by some as a link between Judaism and early Christianity. The scrolls comprise more than 1,000 ancient texts found a half century ago in the caves above Qumran in the West Bank, one of the most significant discoveries in the Holy Land.

Courtney's Note:
Here's the news link, if anyone wants to check it out in person.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

in honor of Serious Matt

I spilled a pot of coffee on the floor of the auditorium of the church building. Any recommendations?