Friday, April 30, 2010

Anthropic Principle

In physics and cosmology, the anthropic principle is an umbrella term for various dissimilar attempts to explain the structure of the universe by way of coincidentally balanced features that are necessary and relevant to the existence on Earth of biochemistry, carbon-based life, and eventually human beings to observe such a universe. The common (and "weak") form of the anthropic principle is a truism or tautology that begins with the observation that the universe appears surprisingly hospitable to the emergence of life, particularly complex multicellular life, that can make such an observation and concludes with that premise that in only such a fine-tuned universe can such living observers be.

The idea evolved from the so-called "Dicke's coincidence", and has subsequently been reinforced by the discovery of many more anthropic coincidences since Intelligent Design for the existence of God.

The "Anthropic principle" has lead Patrick Glynn, former Special Assistant to the Director of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency under the Reagan Administration, to abandon atheism. He says,
"Today the concrete data point strongly in the direction of the God hypothosis. It is the simplist and most obvious solution to the anthropic puzzle." -The Case for a Creator, Lee Strobel


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Anselmian Satisfaction Theory

Anselmian satisfaction theory or the satisfaction view of the atonement is a doctrine in Christian theology related to the meaning and effect of the death of Jesus Christ and has been traditionally taught in Catholic, Lutheran, and Reformed circles. Theologically and historically, the word "satisfaction" does not mean gratification as in common usage, but rather "to make restitution": mending what has been broken, paying back what was taken. It is thus connected with the legal concept of balancing out an injustice. Drawing primarily from the works of Anselm of Canterbury, the satisfaction theory teaches that Christ suffered as a substitute on behalf of humankind satisfying the demands of God's honor by his infinite merit. Anselm regarded his satisfaction view of the atonement as a distinct improvement over the older ransom theory of the atonement, which he saw as inadequate. Anselm's theory was a precursor to the refinements of Thomas Aquinas and John Calvin which introduced the idea of punishment to meet the demands of divine justice.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Radical Islam

Radical Islam or "Islamism" is a term with definitions that sometimes vary. Leading Islamist thinkers emphasized the desire to apply many aspects of sharia (Islamic law) to modern society; of pan-Islamic political unity; and of the elimination of non-Muslim, particularly western, military, economic, political, social, or cultural influences in the Muslim world, which they believe to be incompatible with Islam.

Some observers suggest Islamism's tenets are less strict and can be defined as a form of identity politics or "support for [Muslim] identity, authenticity, broader regionalism, revivalism, [and] revitalization of the community". Still others define it as "an Islamic militant, anti-democratic movement, bearing a holistic vision of Islam whose final aim is the restoration of the caliphate".

Attributes of sharia law supported by many Islamists include "enforcement of Islamic punishments, including prohibitions on charging interest on loans, playing music, showing television", and enforcing traditional dress and prayer attendance.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Parable of the mustard seed

In Christianity, Parable of the Mustard Seed is a a short narrative that, according to the Gospels of Matthew (Matthew 13:31-32), Mark (Mark 4:30-32), Luke (Luke 13:18-19), and the non-canonical Thomas (Thomas 20) was told by Jesus. Possible Hebrew Bible parallels are Daniel 4:10-12, Daniel 4:20-22 and Ezekiel 17:22-23, 31:1-9.
18 Then Jesus asked, "What is the kingdom of God like? What shall I compare it to? 19 It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his garden. It grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air perched in its branches." – Luke 13:18-19


Monday, April 26, 2010

Presuppositional apologetics

Presuppositional apologetics is a school of Christian apologetics, a field of Christian theology that attempts to present a rational basis for the Christian faith, defend the faith against objections, and attack the alleged flaws of other worldviews. Presuppositional apologetics argues that the existence or non-existence of God is the basic presupposition of all human thought, and that all men arrive at a worldview which is ultimately determined by the theology they presuppose. Evidence and arguments are only marshalled after the fact in an attempt to justify the theological assumptions already made. According to this view, it is impossible to demonstrate the existence of God unless one presupposes that God exists; modern science is incapable of discovering the supernatural because it relies on methodological naturalism and thereby fashions a Procrustean bed which rejects any observation which would disprove the naturalistic assumption. For example, science's methodological naturalism cannot make use of this statement:
By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. —Hebrews 11:3 ESB


Sunday, April 25, 2010


Rationalism, also known as the rationalist movement, is a philosophical doctrine that asserts that the truth can best be discovered by reason and factual analysis, rather than faith, dogma or religious teaching. Rationalism has some similarities in ideology and intent to humanism, secular humanism, and atheism, in that it aims to provide a framework for social and philosophical discourse outside of religious or supernatural beliefs; however, rationalism differs from both of these, in that:

As its name suggests, humanism is centered on the dignity and worth of people. While rationalism is a key component of humanism, there is also a strong ethical component in humanism that rationalism does not require. As a result, being a rationalist does not necessarily mean being a humanist.

Atheism, a disbelief or lack of belief in God, can be on any basis, or none at all, so it doesn't require rationalism. Furthermore, rationalism does not, in itself, affirm or deny atheism, although it does reject any belief based on faith alone. Historically, many rationalists were not atheists. Presumably, people who are rationalists today generally do not believe that theism can be rationally justified, because modern-day rationalism is strongly correlated with atheism.


Legio X Fretensis (Latin: "Tenth legion of the sea strait") was a Roman legion levied by Augustus in 41/40 BC to fight during the period of civil war that started the dissolution of the Roman Republic. X Fretensis is recorded to exist at least until 410s.

X Fretensis symbols were the bull, the holy animal of the goddess Venus (mythical ancestor of the gens Julia), a ship (probably a reference to the battles of Naulochus and/or Actium), the god Neptune, and a boar. The symbol of Taurus may also mean that it was organized between 20 April and 20 May.


Legio X Fretensis (Latin: "Tenth legion of the sea strait") was a Roman legion levied by Augustus in 41/40 BC to fight during the period of civil war that started the dissolution of the Roman Republic. X Fretensis is recorded to exist at least until 410s.

X Fretensis symbols were the bull, the holy animal of the goddess Venus (mythical ancestor of the gens Julia), a ship (probably a reference to the battles of Naulochus and/or Actium), the god Neptune, and a boar. The symbol of Taurus may also mean that it was organized between 20 April and 20 May.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Augustine of Hippo

Aurelius Augustinus, Augustine of Hippo ("The knowledgeable one") (November 13, 354–August 28, 430) was one of the most important figures in the development of Western Christianity. In Roman Catholicism, he is a saint and pre-eminent Doctor of the Church. Many Protestants, especially Calvinists, consider him to be one of the theological fountainheads of Reformation teaching on salvation and grace. Born in Africa as the eldest son of Saint Monica, he was educated and baptised in Italy. His works—including The Confessions, which is often called the first Western autobiography—are still read by Christians around the world.


Saint Augustine was born in 354 in Tagaste, a provincial Roman city in North Africa. He was raised and educated in Carthage

His mother Monica was a devout Catholic and his father Patricius a pagan, but Augustine followed the controversial Manichaean religion, much to the horror of his mother.
Now we come to the man who is more than anyone else the representative of the West; he is the foundation of everything the West had to say. Augustine lived from A.D. 354 to 430. His influence overshadows not only the next thousand years but all periods ever since. In the Middle Ages his influence was such that even those who struggled against him in theological terminology and method—the Dominicans, with the help of Aristotle—quoted him often. Thomas Aquinas, who was the great opponent of Augustinianism in the Middle Ages, quoted him affirmatively most frequently.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Ein Gedi

Ein Gedi (Hebrew:עין גדי `Eyn Gediy; KJV Bible Engedi, NIV Bible En Gedi) is an oasis located west of the Dead Sea, close to Masada and the caves of Qumran where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Location 31°27′N, 35°23′E.

It is known for its caves, springs, and its rich diversity of flora and fauna. Ein Gedi is mentioned several times in biblical writings, for example, in the Song of Songs:
"My beloved is unto me as a cluster of henna flowers in the vineyards of Ein Gedi" (1:14).
Accorded to Jewish tradition, David hid from Saul in the caves here;
"And David went up from thence, and dwelt in the strongholds of Ein Gedi" (1 Samuel 24:1).


Wednesday, April 21, 2010


An abortion is the removal or expulsion from the uterus of an embryo or fetus, resulting in or caused by its death. This can occur spontaneously as a miscarriage, or be artificially induced through chemical, surgical or other means.

Commonly, "abortion" refers to an induced abortion procedure at any point in the pregnancy; medically, it is defined as a miscarriage or induced termination before twenty weeks gestation, which is considered nonviable.

There have been various methods of inducing abortion throughout history. The moral and legal aspects of abortion are the subject of intense debate in many parts of the world.

The recently passed Healthcare Bill supports the public funding of abortion.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Cain and Abel

According to the biblical book of Genesis, Cain (meaning "acquisition") and Abel (a biblical forename which may derive from the Hebrew Hebel, itself derived from hevel (breath or vapour), or from the Assyrian for son. In reference to the biblical story, the name Abel often occurs with that of his brother, as Cain and Abel. Cain and Abel were the first and second sons of Adam and Eve, born after the Fall of Man. Their story is told in Genesis 4:1-16. Cain, a farmer, commits the first murder by killing his brother Abel, a shepherd, after God rejects Cain's sacrifice but accepts Abel's.

The oldest known copy of the biblical narration is from the Dead Sea Scrolls (4QGenb = 4Q242, mid 1st century), inspected using infra-red photography and published by Jim R Davila as part of his doctoral dissertation in 1988. Cain and Abel appear in a number of other texts, and the story is the subject of various interpretations. Abel, the first murder victim, is sometimes seen as the first martyr; while Cain, the first murderer, is sometimes seen as a progenitor of evil. A few scholars suggest the pericope may have been based on a Sumerian story representing the conflict between nomadic shepherds and settled farmers.


Monday, April 19, 2010

Michael (archangel)

Michael (Hebrew: Miyka'el, Strong's H317 מיכאל) one of, the chief, or the first archangel who is described as the one who stands in time of conflict for the children of Israel is the archangel mentioned in the Book of Revelation 12:7:
7 And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. (Revelation 12:7)
in the Hebrew Bible Michael is mentioned by name in the Persian context of the post-Exilic Book of Daniel. There in Daniel does Michael appear—as "one of the chief princes" (Daniel 10:13) who in Daniel's vision comes to the angel Gabriel's aid in his contest with the angel of Persia, and is also described there as the advocate of Israel and "great prince who stands up for the children of your (Daniel's) people" (Daniel 10:21, 12:1). The Talmud tradition rendered his name as meaning "who is like El" (God)? (but literally "El's Likeness")" (compare the late prophet Micah), but according to Rabbi Simeon ben Lakish (AD 230–270), all the specific names for the angels were brought back by the Jews from Babylon, and many modern commentators would agree.

Michael is one of the principal angels in Abrahamic tradition; his name was said to have been the war-cry of the angels in the battle fought in heaven against Satan and his followers


Sunday, April 18, 2010


Within Christianity, the doctrine of the Trinity states that God is a single "Being" who exists, simultaneously and eternally, as a communion of three persons (personae, prosopa): Father (the Source, the Eternal Majesty); the Son (the eternal Logos or Word, incarnate as Jesus of Nazareth); and the Holy Spirit. Since the 4th Century AD, in both Eastern and Western Christianity, this doctrine has been stated as "One God in Three Persons," all three of whom, as distinct and co-eternal "persons" or "hypostases," share a single Divine essence, being, or nature.

The word Trinity comes from the Latin noun Trinitas, meaning the state or condition of being three, or a group of three persons or things. The first recorded application of this Latin word to Father, Son and Holy Spirit was by Tertullian in about 200 where he probably combined Latin words for three and one. Although the word Trinity is not found in Scripture, the principle is:
19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19)


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Tree of Jesse

The Tree of Jesse (Hebrew:ישי Yishay) refers to a passage in the biblical Book of Isaiah which metaphorically describes the descent of the Messiah and is accepted by Christians as pertaining to Jesus, and is often represented in art, particularly in that of the Medieval period, the earliest dating from the 11th century.
1 There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.

2 And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD.

3 And his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide disputes by what his ears hear,” (Isaiah 11:1-3 ESV)


Friday, April 16, 2010

Arab-Israeli War (1948)

The 1948 Arab-Israeli War, referred to as the "War of Independence" (Hebrew: מלחמת העצמאות) or as the "War of Liberation" by Israelis, is the first in a series of armed conflicts fought between Israel and its Arab neighbors in the ongoing Arab-Israeli conflict. For Palestinians, the war marked the beginning of the events they refer to as "The Catastrophe" ("al Nakba", Arabic: النكبة‎). After the United Nations proposed to partition the territory of the British Mandate of Palestine into two states, Jewish and Arab, the Arabs refused to accept it and the armies of Egypt, Syria, Transjordan, Lebanon and Iraq, supported by others, attacked the newly established State of Israel which they refused to recognize. As a result, the region was divided between Israel, Egypt and Transjordan.


4 "As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. 5 No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. 6 I will make you very fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will come from you. —Gen. 17:4-6


Thursday, April 15, 2010


Imputation (also imputed righteousness) is a concept in Christian theology proposing: the righteousness of Jesus Christ satisfies all criteria necessary to share in God's grace. Those who trust in the promise that the death of Jesus on the cross atones for their sins believe in this type of righteousness as opposed to imparted righteousness and sanctification. The teaching of imputed righteousness is a signature doctrine of the Lutheran, and Calvinist/Reformed traditions of Christianity.

The case for imputed righteousness
Imputed righteousness is the Protestant solution to a "divine predicament." On the one hand, God is infinitely merciful, "not wishing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9). On the other, God is infinitely holy and just, which means that he cannot approve of or even look upon evil (Habakkuk 1:13), neither can he justify a wicked person (Prov. 17:15). Because the Bible describes all men as sinners and says that there are none who are righteous (Rom. 3:23, 10), these two "competing" traits in God's nature appear to put him in a dilemma.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Jacob's Ladder

Jacob's Ladder refers to a ladder to Heaven described in the Genesis 28:11-19 which the biblical patriarch Jacob envisioned during his flight from his brother Esau:

10 Jacob left Beersheba and set out for Haran. 11 When he reached a certain place, he stopped for the night because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep. 12 He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 There above it stood the LORD, and he said: "I am the LORD, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying. 14 Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring. 15 I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you."

16 When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, "Surely the LORD is in this place, and I was not aware of it." 17 He was afraid and said, "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven."

18 Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on top of it. 19 He called that place Bethel, though the city used to be called Luz.

20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, "If God will be with me and will watch over me on this journey I am taking and will give me food to eat and clothes to wear 21 so that I return safely to my father's house, then the LORD will be my God 22 and this stone that I have set up as a pillar will be God's house, and of all that you give me I will give you a tenth." (Gen. 28: 10-22)


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Fine-tuned Universe

The term fine-tuned universe refers to the idea that conditions that allow life in the universe can only occur with the tightly restricted values of the universal physical constants, and that small changes in these constants would correspond to a very different universe, not likely conducive to the establishment and development of matter, astronomical structures, or life as it is presently known.

The arguments relating to the fine-tuned universe concept are related to the anthropic principle, which states that any valid theory of the universe must be consistent with our existence as human beings at this particular time and place in the universe. In other words even though the actual probability of a universe to be one which supports intelligent life is very low, the conditional probability given our existence in it is 1 — and even if there are other universes devoid of life, there will be no one to observe them.


Monday, April 12, 2010


Zechariah or Zecharya (Hebrew: זְכַרְיָה, "Renowned/Remembered of/is the Lord") was a person in the Old Testament bible and Jewish Tanakh. He was the author of the Book of Zechariah.

It is a theophoric name, the ending -iah being a short Hebrew form for the Tetragrammaton.

He was a prophet of the two-tribe kingdom of Judah, and the eleventh of the minor prophets. Like Ezekiel, he was of priestly extraction. He describes himself (Zechariah 1:1) as "the son of Berechiah." In Ezra 5:1 and 6:14 he is called "the son of Iddo," who was properly his grandfather. His prophetical career began in the second year of Darius, king of Persia (B.C. 520), about sixteen years after the return of the first company from their Babylonian exile. He was contemporary with Haggai (Ezra 5:1).

Although there is an indication in Targum Lamentations that "Zechariah son of Iddo" was killed in the Temple, scholars generally understand this as a reference to the death of a much earlier figure, Zechariah Ben Jehoiada.


Sunday, April 11, 2010


Samuel or Shmu'el (Hebrew: שְׁמוּאֵל) is an important leader of ancient Israel in the Book(s) of Samuel in the Hebrew Bible.

His status, as viewed by rabbinical literature, is that he was the last of the Hebrew Judges and the first of the major prophets who began to prophesy inside the Land of Israel. He was thus at the cusp between two eras.

In the Biblical narrative, Hannah is one of two wives of Elkanah; the other, Peninnah, bore a child to Elkanah, but Hannah remained childless. Nevertheless, Elkanah preferred Hannah. Every year Elkanah would offer a sacrifice at the Shiloh sanctuary, and give Hannah twice as big a portion of it as he would to Penninah. One day Hannah went up to the temple, and prayed silently, while Eli the High Priest was sitting on a chair near the doorpost. In her prayer she begs for a child in return for giving the child up, putting him in the service of the Shiloh priests, and raising him as a nazir.
11 And she vowed a vow and said, "O LORD of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction of your servant and remember me and not forget your servant, but will give to your servant a son, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head." (1 Samuel 1:11 ESV)


Saturday, April 10, 2010


Daniel is a figure appearing in the Hebrew Bible and the central protagonist of the Book of Daniel. The name "Daniel" means "God is my judge" or "God's judge."

Daniel was a young man of the upper crust of Jewish society who was taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon and the Chaldean dynasty. Nebudchadnezzar endeavored to remove all traces of Daniel's nationality and religion. For this reason they strove to change Daniel's name to Belteshazzar:
7 And the chief of the eunuchs gave them names: Daniel he called Belteshazzar, Hananiah he called Shadrach, Mishael he called Meshach, and Azariah he called Abednego. (Dan. 1:7 ESV)
(see also: 2:26; 4:8-9, 18-19; 5:12; 10:1).


Friday, April 09, 2010


The Essenes (es'-eenz) were followers of a religious way of living in Judaism that flourished from the 2nd century BC to the 1st century AD. Many scholars today argue that there were a number of separate but related groups that had in common mystic, eschatological, messianic, and ascetic beliefs that were referred to as the "Essenes". There are also contemporary movements which identify themselves as Essenes, including the "Orthodox" Christian Essenes.

The main source of information about the life and belief of Essenes is the detailed account contained in a work of the 1st century Jewish historiographer Josephus entitled The Jewish War written about 73-75 CE (War 2.119-161) and his shorter description in his Antiquities finished some 20 years later (Ant. 18.11 & 18-22). Claiming first hand knowledge (Life §§10-11), he refers to them by the name Essenoi and lists them as the followers of one of the three "choices" in "Jewish Philosophy'" (War 2.119) alongside the Pharisees and the Sadducees.


Thursday, April 08, 2010

Saul Alinsky

Saul Alinsky (January 30, 1909, Chicago, Illinois – June 12, 1972, Carmel, California) was an American community organizer and writer. He is generally considered to be the founder of modern community organizing.

A year before his death in 1972, from the prologue his book Rules for Radicals (his final work, published in 1971), he wrote:

“There’s another reason for working inside the system. Dostoevski said that taking a new step is what people fear most. Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so future-less in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and change the future. This acceptance is the reformation essential to any revolution. To bring on this reformation requires that the organizer work inside the system, among not only the middle class but the 40 per cent of American families — more than seventy million people — whose income range from $5,000 to $10,000 a year [in 1971]. They cannot be dismissed by labeling them blue collar or hard hat. They will not continue to be relatively passive and slightly challenging. If we fail to communicate with them, if we don’t encourage them to form alliances with us, they will move to the right. Maybe they will anyway, but let’s not let it happen by default.”


Wednesday, April 07, 2010


The supernatural (Latin: super- "exceeding" + nature) refers to forces and phenomena which are are not observed in nature, and therefore beyond verifiable measurement. If a phenomenon can be demonstrated, it can no longer be considered supernatural. Because phenomena must be subjected to verifiable measurement and peer review to be considered as a scientific theory, science cannot approach the supernatural.
"Measure what is measurable, and make measurable what is not so." —Galileo Galilei
Concepts in the supernatural domain are closely related to concepts in religious spirituality and metaphysics. The term "supernatural" is often used interchangeably with paranormal or preternatural — the latter typically limited to an adjective for describing abilities which appear to exceed possible bounds.

Characteristic for phenomena claimed as supernatural are anomaly, uniqueness and uncontrollability, thus lacking reproducibility required for scientific examination. Supernatural themes are often associated with paranormal and occult ideas, suggesting for possibility of interaction with the supernatural by means of summoning or trance for instance


Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Joseph of Arimathea

Joseph of Arimathea, according to the Gospels, was the man who donated his own prepared tomb for the burial of Jesus after Jesus was crucified. A native of Arimathea, he was apparently a man of wealth, and a member of the Sanhedrin (which is the way bouleutēs, literally "senator", is interpreted in Matthew 27:57 and Luke 23:50). Joseph was an "honourable counsellor, who waited (or "was searching" which is not the same thing) for the kingdom of God" (Mark, 15:43). As soon as he heard the news of Jesus' death, he "went in boldly" (literally "having summoned courage, he went") "unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus."

Pontius Pilate, who was reassured by a centurion that the death had really taken place, allowed Joseph's request. Joseph immediately purchased fine linen (Mark 15:46) and proceeded to Golgotha to take the body down from the cross. There, assisted by Nicodemus, he took the body and wrapped it in the fine linen, sprinkling it with the myrrh and aloes which Nicodemus had brought (John 19:39).


Monday, April 05, 2010


In the arts, history, archaeology, the study of antiques, and similar fields involving unique or scarce artifacts from the past, and, with regard to documents in law, authenticity (Greek: ἀρχηγός from 'archēgos'='author')
  1. the chief leader, prince
    • of Christ
  2. one that takes the lead in any thing and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer
  3. the author
Strong's Number: 747 Greek: archegos
Author: translated "Prince" in Act 3:15 (marg., "Author") and Acts 5:31, but "Author" in Hebrews 2:10, RV, "Captain," RV marg., and AV, and "Author" in Hebrews 12:2, primarily signifies "one who takes a lead in, or provides the first occasion of,anything." In the Septuagint it is used of the chief of a tribe or family, Numbers 13:2 (RV, prince); of the "heads" of the children of Israel, Numbers 13:3; a captain of the whole people, Numbers 14:4; in Micah 1:13, of Lachish as the leader of the sin of the daughter of Sion: there, as in Hebrews 2:10, the word suggest a combination of the meaning of leader with that of the source from whence a thing proceeds. That Christ is the Prince of life signifies, as Chrysostom says, that "the life He had was not from another; the Prince or Author of life must be He who has life from Himself." But the word does not necessarily combine the idea of the source or originating cause with that of leader. In Hebrews 12:2 where Christ is called the "Author and Perfecter of faith," He is represented as the one who takes precedence in faith and is thus the perfect Exemplar of it. The pronoun "our" does not correspond to anything in the original, and may well be omitted. Christ in the days of His flesh trod never deviating the path of faith, and as the Perfecter has brought it to a perfect end in His own person. Thus He is the leader of all others who tread that path.

Note:In Acts 28:16 some mss. have the word stratopedarches (lit., "camp-commander"), which some take to denote a praetorian prefect, or commander of the praetorian cohorts, the Emperor's bodyguard, "the captain of the praetorian guard." There were two praetorian prefects, to whose custody prisoners sent bound to the Emperor were consigned. But the word probably means the commander of a detached corps connected with the commissariat and the general custody of prisoners.

Prince:primarily an adjective signifying "originating, beginning," is used as a noun, denoting "a founder, author, prince or leader," Acts 3:15, "Prince" (marg., "Author"); Acts 5:31

People in the postmodern culture seek real and authentic experiences in preference over scripted or superficial experiences. Emerging churches strive to be "relevant" to today's culture and daily life, whether it be through worship or service opportunities. The core Christian message is unchanged but emerging churches attempt, as the church has throughout the centuries, to find ways to reach God's people where they are to hear God's message of unconditional love.


Sunday, April 04, 2010

William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig (born August 23, 1949) is an American philosopher, theologian, and Christian apologist. He is a prolific author and lecturer on a wide range of issues related to the philosophy of religion, the historical Jesus, the coherence of the Christian worldview, and Intelligent Design. He is married and lives in Atlanta, Georgia, and is currently a Research Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University in La Mirada, California. Craig is a fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture, which is the hub of the Intelligent Design movement.

Craig has been critical of
  • philosophical naturalism,
  • logical positivism,
  • moral relativism,
  • liberal theology, and
  • the Jesus Seminar.
He has defended the middle knowledge view of divine providence and is also notable for his work in the philosophy of time. He is a founding member and has served as president of the Philosophy of Time Society


Saturday, April 03, 2010

Resurrection of Jesus

According to the Trinitarian interpretation of the New Testament, Jesus was both human and God, so he had the power to lay his life down and to take it up again; thus after Jesus died, he came back to life. This event is referred to in Christian terminology as the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and is commemorated and celebrated by most Christians annually on Easter Sunday.

Most Christians, even those who do not interpret other parts of the Bible literally, accept the New Testament story as an historical account of an actual event central to their faith, though some do not accept a literal bodily resurrection, sometimes arguing for docetism. But it so seems that in the past, a large group of Christians known as the Gnostics, who were later declared heretics and partially exterminated, argued against its singular importance, and claimed that the New Testament supported their claims. Non-Christians generally view the story as legend or as allegory.


Friday, April 02, 2010


Crucifixion was an ancient method of execution, where the victim was tied or nailed to a large wooden cross and left to hang there until dead. It is mostly widely known as a not uncommon but extremely dishonorable as well as excruciating form of judicial execution in the Roman Empire, though similar methods were employed in other ancient cultures. Crucifixion has special significance in Christianity, which holds that Jesus was crucified but later resurrected. Because of this the Christian cross or crucifix has become a common symbol of Christianity.

Crucifixion was used by the Romans (see Roman Empire) until about 313 AD, when Christianity became the dominant faith in Rome. However, it has been used in various places in modern times.
24 And they crucified him and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take.25 And it was the third hour when they crucified him.26 And the inscription of the charge against him read, "The King of the Jews." (Mark 15:24-26 ESV)


Thursday, April 01, 2010

Edmund Husserl

Edmund Gustav Albrecht Husserl (April 8, 1859 – April 26, 1938) was a philosopher, known as the father of phenomenology. His work was a break with the purely positivist orientation and understanding of the science and philosophy of his day, giving weight to subjective experience as the source of all of our knowledge of objective phenomena.

Husserl was a pupil of Franz Brentano and Carl Stumpf; his philosophical work influenced, among others, Eugen Fink, Max Scheler, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre, Emmanuel Lévinas, Rudolf Carnap, Hermann Weyl, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Pierre Bourdieu, Paul Ricœur, Jacques Derrida, Jan Patočka, Roman Ingarden, Edith Stein (St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross), Karol Wojtyla and Dallas Willard. In 1887 Husserl converted to Christianity and joined the Lutheran Church. He taught philosophy at Halle as a tutor (Privatdozent) from 1887, then at Göttingen as professor from 1901, and at Freiburg im Breisgau from 1916 until he retired in 1928. After this, he continued his research and writing by using the library at Freiburg.





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