The Pokey Finger of God

meditations on religion and culture

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Irrational Animus

October 9th, 2014 · Comments Off on Irrational Animus · christianity, culture, media

In response to Damon Linker’s essay Why do so many liberals despise Christianity?: First off, it’s ludicrous to posit that all, or even many, liberals hate Christianity, simply because there are so many liberal Christians. From what I can tell, for every annoying, conservative, evangelical Christian, there are two liberal, mainstream Christians who simply don’t […]

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The State Cult Hypothesis

January 21st, 2009 · Comments Off on The State Cult Hypothesis · christianity, history

The State Cult Hypothesis: “Christianity was primarily the result of a competition between the state cults of Diocletian and Constantine. It was the efforts of Constantine to defeat Diocletian’s Tetrarchy, co-opt the Persian cultural invasion, and subsequently unify the Roman Empire that resulted in the creation of Christianity.” Constantine was a keen student of history, […]

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Diocletian and the Roman Recovery

December 11th, 2008 · Comments Off on Diocletian and the Roman Recovery · christianity, history, media

Here’s something I’ve enjoyed greatly this last week: Stephen Williams’ Diocletian and the Roman Recovery. This book from 1985 was apparently one of the first biographies of the man written in English. The genius here is the clear and concise comparison between the Empire under the “Good Emperors” and the Empire under “Crisis”. Williams provides […]

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Mile Marker

August 3rd, 2008 · Comments Off on Mile Marker · christianity, history

I’m starting to become overwhelmed (again) with revising my understanding of 1st-4th Centuries CE. On one hand, I can still clearly point to the council of Nicea in 325AD and say that this was the place at which Constantine (re-)created Christianity. On the other, I’m completely befuddled regarding which characters were real and which were […]

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Second and Third Derivations

July 31st, 2008 · Comments Off on Second and Third Derivations · christianity, history

Since discovery of PRF Brown’s site[1], I have burned a good many hours both reading and thinking. It’s clear that the “Eusebian Fiction Postulate”[2] has forced me to re-examine what I thought I understood about early church history. I have been relatively pleased, so far, to find that it seems to make more sense, given […]

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cold bed fellows

February 28th, 2008 · Comments Off on cold bed fellows · christianity

This whole Constantine series has been riddled with errors, and the more I re-read them, the more problems I find. In this first one, I totally trash the Roman Emperors portion of the quiz. 1. Big C was the last Tetrarch of the Roman Empire In a sense, he was never really an official Tetrarch, […]

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Wow.

February 24th, 2008 · Comments Off on Wow. · christianity, history, media

Fourth Century Christianity The History Department of Wisconsin Lutheran College under the direction of Dr. Glen L. Thompson, presents a number of hard-to-find texts, insightful charts, and much relevant documentation regarding the first century of Roman Christianity. Awesome stuff.

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Seeking, Not Found

January 29th, 2008 · Comments Off on Seeking, Not Found · christianity, culture

A recent religion post contained something of a broad statement. It was a conclusion I had drawn without the benefit of third-party confirmation. What I had said was that the term “Christian” did not just apply to those who followed the “Jesus Movement”, but also those who followed any of a dozen Hellenized, Asian mystery […]

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New Year

January 1st, 2008 · Comments Off on New Year · christianity, culture, history

A recent revelation in my religious studies has taken more than the usual amount of time to digest. The resulting effervescent fountain of nested implications has kept me busy for a while. Possibly the biggest question for me has always been based on a need to understand how the whole of Western Europe voluntarily abandoned […]

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Forever the victim, never the dominant culture

December 27th, 2007 · Comments Off on Forever the victim, never the dominant culture · christianity, culture, media

Despite over 1500 years of political and cultural dominance in the West, it continues to astound me the number of people who insist that Christians in the West today suffer from any sort of minority persecution. The “True Believer Is the Victim” ploy plays as well in Peoria as in LA, so why not make […]

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