The Content Cluster Muster (04.22.21)

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The Latest Ad from NSA

And it is a good one . . .

Hey, That’s Not a Road & Then Two of That’s More Like It

As per our usual custom, more here.

Diet of Worms

We Should Assume a Lot of Things

Yes, Quite

Going Downhill is not Always a Bad Thing

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Ree
Ree
1 month ago

Not a bad thing as long as you don’t ride the brakes on your dad’s car in neutral down a long, steep grade.

I loved that story in Grace Upon Grace because I have fond memories of White Bird, Idaho during its annual “White Bird Days” that my friend and I experienced on a cross-country bicycling trip she and I took in 1984–the only time I’ve ever been through Idaho. What a beautiful state.

Richard Homer
Richard Homer
1 month ago

Love the NSA video except for the poster-sized closed captioning. I’m not sure it’s a great idea in the first place, but it seems to dominate the whole video.

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago

From a Catholic perspective, Luther’s speech at the Diet of Worms has echoes of today’s transgender activists:

“It’s my Bible, when I interpret it as I want, it’s your job to convince me I’m wrong.”
“It’s my body, when I decide I’m a woman and not a man, it’s your job to convince me I’m wrong.”

“But, no one for 1500 years has interpreted the Bible the way you do.”
“But, no one for 1500 years has interpreted biology the way you do.”

“Everyone who disagrees with me is wrong and is a *******! Don’t listen to them!”
Ditto!

Brendan of Ireland
Brendan of Ireland
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

John, Luther was giving a Catholic perspective.

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago

It was the perspective of one individual Catholic monk.

If a baptized Catholic decides he does not believe in some Catholic doctrine, can that really be called “a Catholic perspective”?

John Davidson
John Davidson
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

Luther’s convictions weren’t novel at the time. The reason the reformation happened was because his arguments struck a chord with so many.

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago
Reply to  John Davidson

His convictions about official corruption in Rome were indeed shared by many – his theological ideas were idiosyncratic to himself.

As a practical matter, the Reformation happened once governments realized that getting into the business of religion allowed them to expropriate vast wealth while simultaneously eliminating a powerful potential source of criticism. Here’s one analysis of how that worked: The Economic Consequences of Martin Luther.

Average citizens had no say in the matter. Under the formula of cuius regio, eius religio, the ruler of a kingdom was the only one who decided the religion of his subjects.

Michael Hoffman
Michael Hoffman
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

In my book “Usury in Christendom: The Mortal Sin that Was and Now is Not” I try to demonstrate the anti-avarice, anti-usury rage of Luther at both the papacy and the theologians who were in the pay of the “Catholic” Fugger bank, which had a vested interest in the Church formally–for the first time in history–allowing the renting of money. This was an incremental process that began with Luther’s nemesis, Medici pontiff Leo X in 1515, with alibis furnished by the Fugger mouthpiece (and Luther’s antagonist) Johann Eck. It culminated in 1830 with Pius VIII’s ruling on Aug. 18 (“Rhedonensem… Read more »

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago

The financial and sexual corruption in the Church hierarchy leading up to the Reformation was well known to all and a cause of immense scandal. Erasmus’ satire of rampant ecclesiastical corruption, In Praise of Folly, became an international bestseller. He was such a well-known critic that he was accused of having ghost-written Luther’s 95 Theses. Some of the pre-Reformation efforts at reforming the Church are described here: Reform Came before the Reformation. The effect of Luther’s Reformation was simply to consolidate large-scale corruption into solely governmental hands. Kings, princes and the nobility eagerly re-purposed former church resources towards their own… Read more »

Kevin
Kevin
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

John,

How did you come to the conclusion that the magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church has interpreted scripture correctly?

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago
Reply to  Kevin

The shortest answer, of course, is that I came to the conclusion by the Grace of God.

As with many questions, it’s impossible to write a more memorable answer than the one given by our gracious host’s favorite writer:

The difficulty of explaining “why I am a Catholic” is that there are ten thousand reasons all amounting to one reason: that Catholicism is true.

(G.K. Chesterton, Why I Am A Catholic)

For a longer, drier and more formal explanation, I’d recommend Catholics and the Bible.

David Anderson
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

The other way round. Rome was representing the transgenders at Worms. Luther insists that the Bible means what the text, syntax, grammar and context of the words written by its authors (and Author) mean, no matter how much you have some other clever reasons why it means something else. The Catholics insisted that, even though it says one thing, its true interpretation can be something entirely contrary and arbitrary; the meaning can float entirely free of the text just as long as Rome says it does.

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago
Reply to  David Anderson

The Catholic approach to Scripture is both more constrained than the Protestant approach and also less constrained. It’s more constrained because the Church cannot interpret the Scriptures in ways that contradict two thousand years of tradition. It is less constrained because the Church Fathers were less insistent than Luther (or Calvin, or many others) that so many verses must be interpreted in exactly the way they demanded. Luther felt little compunction about contradicting thousands of saints throughout the centuries. He also felt little compunction about bitterly denouncing any of his contemporaries who disagreed with his interpretations. Thus the similarity to… Read more »

Jill Smith
Jill Smith
1 month ago
Reply to  John Callaghan

John, do you think Luther’s position on the 15th article of the Colloquy at Marburg was based on his own interpretation of scripture or his residual Catholic belief in the Real Presence? What became the Lutheran doctrine of consubstantiation seems to have been rejected by other reformers.

What you mentioned above about the cuius regio, eius religio principle was actually the reason for the Colloquy. Philip of Hesse was anxious to form a union of the Protestant states to consolidate power, and resolving religious disputes among leading reformers was seen as an important preliminary.

John Callaghan
John Callaghan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jill Smith

Whatever Luther and Zwingli based their original ideas on, neither man could return home and tell his followers, “I was wrong about the Eucharist.” “Really? But you’d said the other guy was wrong because he was stupid and evil.” “Yeah. Well… I changed my mind.” “Really? But you’ve been telling us that the Catholics are wrong because they’re stupid and evil too” “I won’t change on that!” “Really?” The woke left uses the same tactic today to keep their followers in line. Branding conservatives as “stupid and evil” is a very effective method to short-circuit doubts about the correctness of… Read more »