Category Archives: Bad Examples

…Or Your Money Back!

Prayer Drop Box, Guaranteed ResultsHere’s a picture that has been making the rounds recently.  I think it started as an “iReport” on CNN.com.  It’s from a church in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

I assume the fine print is on the back.

Results include the following:

What you pray for happens: God said “Yes!”

What you prayer for doesn’t happen: “God said “No!”

What you pray for doesn’t happen, and your house burns down, your girlfriend breaks up with you, and you are paralyzed in a freak diving accident: “God wants you to learn patience, faith and endurance!  He said said No to your request but said Yes to something even better!”

Results are guaranteed.

On a very related note:

A bit of random surfing last night brought me to the blog of Sam Isaacson, who I don’t know at all, but who seems like a nice, thoughtful person.  He writes about Christian living and faith-related topics, including prayer and suffering.

In a post from a couple of weeks ago called, “How God Helps When We’re Suffering,” he writes:

An analogy may help. Imagine that I promised that I would buy you a brand new car in one week’s time. Now, imagine that in one week’s time, instead of buying you a brand new car, I bought you a brand new house. Only a fool would refuse to take the house, saying, ‘but you promised to buy me a car!’ What I gave to you was worth far more, was better, than what I originally promised.

The same is true of God’s promise to answer our prayer. If, for example, I’m really sick and pray to God to heal me, and He does, then that’s a great example of how He has been faithful to His promise to answer my prayer. So…what if He doesn’t? Simples! In His infinite wisdom He has determined that the best thing for me is not to be well right now, He wants to use my sickness for a greater goal, whether or not I understand it.

God will either deliver me from suffering, or give me the strength to bear it – whichever is better. The judgment of which one is better, we have to leave to Him.

Simples!

How exactly this differs from the old Pagan concept of Fate is difficult to see.  But I think this has become the dominant Christian understanding of prayer, especially among American evangelicals.

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Filed under Bad Examples, Bad Theology, Church Culture, This Is Bad

Is There Poop in the Eschaton?

I was in the Duke Divinity School library yesterday doing some research, and noticed this theological discussion conducted via graffiti near the study carrells.

Is there poop in the eschaton?

I think I’m going to poop

I did!

I can’t!  Even after ex-lax!  Help!

SERIOUSLY- What do you think?  Is there pooping in the eschaton?

Depends:  at the resurrection, yes.  Not at any disembodied intermediate state, though.

RESURRECTED BODIES WILL PROCESS NUTRIENTS PERFECTLY, PRODUCING NO WASTE

Is feces waste?  It puts nutrients back into the soil.  Could the interconnectivity of life needed to make heaven edenic truly be present without a little poop?

I just hope this doesn’t eventually lead to a church split.  The last thing we need are poop-in-the-New-Earth Methodists squaring off against no-poop-in-the-New-Earth Methodists.

Until I know otherwise, I’m going to assume this is the work of pre-law students.  Divinity students should all know the real answer already.

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Filed under Bad Examples, Bad Theology, Noted In Passing, This Is Bad

I Thought Only Protestants Could Be This Cheesy

Guess I’ll hold off on converting to Catholicism.  Time to take a closer look at the Orthodox church.  Seriously, could we treat our faith like it’s holy and mysterious, not just a gimmicky PR enterprise?

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Bad Theology Kills Again

From the St. Petersburg Times, on 06/06/06 (!!)

A man shouting that God would keep him safe was mauled to death by a lioness in the Kiev Zoo after he crept into an enclosure, a zoo official said Monday.

“The man shouted ‘God will save me, if he exists,’ lowered himself by a rope into the enclosure, took his shoes off and went up to the lions,” the official said.

“A lioness went straight for him, knocked him down and severed his carotid artery.”

“It is also written: Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”

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