let kids watch beauty and the beast

The quest for a bible

I stand in Family Christian, perusing the bibles, admitting defeat.  Defeat because what I want isn’t here, I know that.  It never has been and it likely never will be.  The closest I ever came to what I want was at Sam’s Club, of all places, but that one opportunity came and slipped away.

I look at the bibles and cannot decide whether to be amused or impressed.  I pause for a moment on the Women of Color Study Bible.  Clearly not for me.  The very thought of a bible existing that is “clearly not for me” lingers in my mind as I ponder the American Patriot’s Bible.  I wonder about the various women’s bibles and why none have ever attracted my interest.

So many titles, so many choices.  I am a bit overwhelmed when I notice a title that seems out of place:  The Case for Christ.  Mis-shelved?  No, it is an actual bible, edited by Lee Strobel.

I can’t decide exactly what I think of all the titles for a single book.  A single book which was written to all of us, now continually rewritten, retranslated, repackaged and remarketed to increasingly focused “niche” markets.

A single book, written to unite us, now seems to segregate us into individual markets.  The Sportsman’s Bible, the Policeman’s Bible, the Keepsake Bride’s Bible.  All of a sudden, the Bible is reminding me of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, except that it is the same material.  The same material repackaged, with new supplemental material.

I finally settle on The Archeological Study Bible.  I have been looking at it for awhile, intrigued by the promise of archeological and cultural references.  I have picked it up several times, but this evening I have admitted defeat and take my selection to the counter.

Because I know what I want.  I want something of a family bible.  A large book with large print to sit impressively on my dining room table as we read it together.  An illustrated book.  Beautifully illustrated.

What I want has existed in the past.  The Dore Bible is an excellent example.  Imagine how the mind of a child could be stimulated pouring over beautiful illustrations like this:

And how his mind would be drawn into the story.  Art that does not merely illustrate, but captivates.

The 1846 Illuminated Bible (an audio introduction will start) is the one I almost purchased.  With over 1600 detailed illustrations, it is something to behold.  It has something to draw each member of our family in as we read together.

But even the reproduction runs close to $300, and the originals in the thousands.  A family bible should be something the children are allowed to touch.  To take to their rooms.  To refer to throughout the day.

Apparently my niche market isn’t quite large enough to justify the publishing costs of such an impressive volume.  But wouldn’t it be lovely…

let kids watch beauty and the beast

The Conservative Bible Project

How do you alienate Christians and make a mockery of conservatives in a single act?  Undertake a new Bible translation!  The Conservative Bible will allow you to read the Bible without those annoying liberal verses such as these:

  • John 7:53-8:11 We all know Jesus wouldn’t have stopped a good stoning.  You’d think he actually had some use for sinners, or something.  Clearly an addition of ACORN.
  • Luke 23:34 Forgive them?  I don’t know how anyone could read the bible and think that Jesus praying for forgiveness of those who are persecuting Him is at all consistent with the text.  He probably said something more like “Strike their children and their children’s children with blindness.”
  • Luke 16:8 OK, so they are leaving it, but the dishonest servant is to be praised as resourceful rather than shrewd.  Got to leave out that negative connotation associated with someone who just ripped off his master to win himself friends.
  • We also know that no one but a communist would use the word “comrade.”  There are three verses in Judges that need editing.  I think Obama must have had plants in the committee to write the English Standard Version, just to warm us up to his radical socialist agenda.  I speak no Hebrew, but my Strong’s tells me the word used there can also mean “lover” or “husband.”  Much better person for Gideon to be talking to about his dreams.
  • John 1:1 The use of the word word is too complicated for conservatives.  It will be re-worded as truth.  Strong’s must have been influenced by those liberals as well, because it doesn’t even give “truth” as a possible translation of logos.  It is all about thought and reason and expression.  But we wouldn’t want anyone to think too hard about what it all means or they might become communists.
  • Isaiah 9:6-7, Isaiah 22:21 and 2 Peter 2:10 What’s this nonsense about the government being on His shoulders? Those translators were getting all to cozy with government.  And 2 Peter 2:10 is downright obnoxious.  “Despising government” should not be in the same list of sins as presumptuous, self-willed and uncleanness.
  • Oh, and by the way, the Hebrew and Greek were inadequate for Christ to explain what He really meant in numerous places, so we need to take the liberty of expounding upon His rough attempts at speaking using the accurate rhetoric of the modern American conservative movement.

While we are at it, I think we should set up a new missions board.  I am afraid that the subtext of Jesus as the way the truth and the life has taken on far too much importance in the field and has begun to overshadow the god of American capitalism.

Hat Tip: Caffeinated Thoughts

let kids watch beauty and the beast

How do you address ‘Christian’ teaching of homosexuality?

I may be treading into waters here that are better left untouched, but this sort of teaching had a profound effect on me shortly after my conversion to Christianity, and drove me into a sort of spiritual dormancy less than six months after my awakening.  Ironically, it was an atheist homosexual that re-awakened me, but that is a story for another time.  As I explained in a post about some of my personal journey to find my voice:

When I became a Christian, I did not have very good bible teaching. I attended church sporadically because of my schedule. Fred Phelps was very active on my campus and cast everything remotely Christian in the shadow of his presence. The single most memorable event in college was trying to get to the student union during Gay Pride Week. He staged a protest and I had to walk the gauntlet between the two groups, bombarded with signs saying, “God hates f*gs” and so-called Christians screaming hateful things and trying to shout down the speakers for the event.

I was horrified, but did not know enough to realize that what these people were doing was not Christian. So I did not identify myself publicly as a Christian because to do so meant I was involved with that. Instead, I was silent.

So what do you think of sermons like this?  [WARNING: Offensive language and you likely do not want your children listening to this. ]

I cannot listen to it outside my own frame of reference…as a new convert intimidated by the same tone, the same language, the same hatred.  As a Christian moved to silence and a witness muted due to lack of understanding of what was going on.

Pharyngula sees a “terrifying, crazy Republican woman” (referring to the author of Homeschooling Hints who has been posting on this issue).  I see another, more subtle, attack on Christianity.  As few in number as they may be, it is views like these which are driving legislation which will eventually affect all of us.  Not to mention the more important issue of the number of people they succeed in driving away from Christ rather than merely into spiritual dormancy for a couple of years.

What do you think?  And how do you respond?

let kids watch beauty and the beast

Religion and abuse

This has nothing to do with homeschooling, but nausea and apathy have pretty much killed my motivation to tackle the task I set before myself this evening…and that is only in part due to pregnancy.  Thanks to COD for this little article which displays both the worst and best of the human spirit:  The girl in the window.

The girl in the window is six year old Danielle, who just appeared there for a fleeting moment one day, years after a family moved in.  No one even knew a little girl lived there.  When officers finally arrived to investigate, what they found left them vomiting and in tears.

“I’ve been in rooms with bodies rotting there for a week and it never stunk that bad,” Holste said later. “There’s just no way to describe it. Urine and feces — dog, cat and human excrement — smeared on the walls, mashed into the carpet. Everything dank and rotting.”

And then there was the little girl.  The one who had appeared for a fleeting moment in a window months previously.  Lying in a bed in a soiled diaper, amongst a stack of dirty diapers and surrounded by filth and human excrement.  At seven, she had been so severely neglected that she was completely unresponsive to stiumuli, including eye contact, touch and even pain.  No one knows whether she will ever be able to live on her own although physically, nothing is wrong with her.

In the end, she is adopted by a loving family who by all accounts is doing all they can for her even though she is far from what they were seeking when they set their hearts on adoption.  Her eyes just captivated them and the rest didn’t seem to matter so much.  She is even beginning to show improvment, responds to people, understands simple commands, is potty trained and seems to enjoy interaction…all things which no one knew for sure she would ever be capable of.

I should have just stopped reading the story at the end.  It was about as happy of an ending as you could get for a story like this.  But of course a comment caught my attention, and I think someone’s moral compass is in serious need of readjustment.  Dormiel writes:

Wait they are saying that the mother had a low IQ and was neglectful so they give her to a family who worship sky fairies? I don’t know what’s worse frankly.

Let me see.  Leave the child to rot in her own feces, or give her to a Christian family who wants to care for her.  Which do you think is worse?

I’d be inclined to pass it off as yet another asinine Internet comment, but I’ve heard others who seem to have difficulty drawing a distinction as well.

So we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible, or that the planets rule their lives, than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon.  Edge.org

And Nicholas Humphrey is not some random anonymous commenter on a newspaper article.  He was speaking before Amnesty International.