The Pokey Finger of God

meditations on religion and culture

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A Talent Not Invested

September 6th, 2014 · Comments Off on A Talent Not Invested · christianity, history

“This is a little off the subject but I was discussing prosperity theology and came across Luke 19 – a parable Jesus said told Zacchaeus the tax collector about 3 servants charged with making money work for a king in his absence. Long story short the servant who buried the money was called wicked because […]

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A Critic!

January 26th, 2011 · Comments Off on A Critic! · christianity, history, intentional communities, metaphysics

I recently received a comment to this site that I deleted, due to a fake email address. The comment was to my State Cult Hypothesis post from two years ago. The entire comment read as follows: ‚ÄúThis has got to be the dumbest thing I have ever read. I would like to leave a detailed […]

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Philip

July 19th, 2008 · Comments Off on Philip · christianity, history

Philip occupies a rather unusual corner of the canon. On the one hand, he’s one of the first people Jesus recruits[1] and he’s shown recruiting other apostles[2] as well as bringing the early Church to Samaria[3]. On the other hand, he’s very much a bit part: he does not appear as a significant actor in […]

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Wet Behind the Ears

July 14th, 2008 · Comments Off on Wet Behind the Ears · christianity, history

Almost immediately after the last post, I realized that a “part two” would be in order. First off, there’s the whole issue of how the Gospel of John has a totally different take on the whole baptism thing than the synoptics. Obviously, the Gospel of John has a special place for the Baptist, and his […]

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The Gnostic Calling of Jesus

July 12th, 2008 · Comments Off on The Gnostic Calling of Jesus · christianity, history

In reviewing some historical material, specifically the Prophets of the Old Testament, something new occurred to me. On one level, the Prophets of Ancient Israel and Judah were the real standard bearers for the Yah cult. Some of the kings seemed to like it, perhaps because they imagined that they could somehow politically reunite the […]

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A Little Extra

June 16th, 2008 · Comments Off on A Little Extra · christianity, media

After I posted my review of Marvin Vining’s Jesus the Wicked Priest, he contacted me to thank me for the review and asked me to send him questions. Heh, heh, heh. So I did. My questions: You claim that Essenes were the dominant culture and that their leader, the “Teacher of Righteousness,” was also the […]

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Jesus the Wicked Priest

June 1st, 2008 · Comments Off on Jesus the Wicked Priest · christianity, history, media

Marvin Vining, Jesus the Wicked Priest. (C) 2008. Published by Bear and Company, Rochester, VT. www.MarvinVining.com This work is a fascinating reading that combines sources from Dead Sea Scroll materials and Biblical exegesis to produce a surprisingly personal story of conflict between characters in the gospel stories. Vining brings to life a vital, aggressive Jesus, […]

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Not one but many

May 28th, 2008 · Comments Off on Not one but many · christianity, history, media

I’m beginning to accumulate an unwieldy quantity of historical Jesuses. Less useful in that I’ve moved to a primary narrative that leaves Jesus out altogether. Even so, in the absence of an actual, historical Jesus, we may still create a number of literary Jesuses, each distinct and beloved, and required for generational continuity of the […]

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Essene but not heard

May 27th, 2008 · Comments Off on Essene but not heard · christianity, history

I’m enjoying the Marvin Vining book, Jesus the Wicked Priest, but not because I agree with his conclusions. In fact, the more I read, the further removed I become from agreement. He’s another armchair archaeologist, so I feel a certain kinship with him. This despite the fact that the guy has to go through some […]

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Gospel of Judas, revisited

May 7th, 2008 · Comments Off on Gospel of Judas, revisited · christianity, history, media

The latest issue of BAR revisits the much hyped Gospel of Judas, and has some unkind words for National Geographic and their media-heavy release of the original material. The biggest complaint was that they picked the wrong scholars who didn’t understand Gnostic cultures and misinterpreted key passages of the text. Most significantly, NatlGeo published an […]

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