EppsNet Archive: God

Is Christmas a Joyous Day? (A Movie Review)

 

SPOILERS AHEAD! The central character in this movie is a Buddhist monk who has achieved immortality, he looks about 50 but he no longer ages. There is, however, a prophecy that a girl born in the same town that he was born in, but 100 years later, will kill him. [SPOILERS START HERE] So for the last 14 years, he has had his disciples locate and murder every girl born in that city in the year 1999. In most cases, the bodies were disposed of so the cases were treated as missing persons, or in some cases, as accidents. (As I write this, it does seem like the police should have been able to connect the dots a little sooner.) When you see it in a movie like this, it seems grotesque and inhuman that a religious leader would order a mass murder of children in order to preserve his… Read more →

Another Reason I’m Not a Christian

 

One of my nieces had a seizure, was taken to the hospital and diagnosed with a brain tumor. The last report I heard was that one doctor thought the situation was very dire, while another thought since she had no history of seizures, the prognosis was not so bad. We don’t know yet. This woman is a good person, religious person, faithful churchgoer . . . why do things like this happen if the world was created by a good, omnipotent God? As a purification for sin? In that case, why am I not the one getting a brain tumor? I haven’t been to a church in decades. It’s another reason I’m not able to believe in God. You have to spend too much time finding excuses for pain and misery in this suffering world. Read more →

God Cannot Feel Disappointment or Pain

 

“Your god must feel a bit disappointed,” Doctor Colin said, “when he looks at this world of his.” “When you were a boy they can’t have taught you theology very well. God cannot feel disappointment or pain.” “Perhaps that’s why I don’t care to believe in him.” — Graham Greene, _A Burnt-Out Case_ Read more →

Just Like Santa

 

The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good. — Proverbs 15:3 Read more →

The Silence is the Voice of God

 

Our path is worn our feet are poorly shod We lift up our prayer against the odds And fear the silence is the voice of God, of God, of God And we cry Hallelujah, Hallelujah, we cry Hallelujah It is the heart that kills us in the end Just one more old broken bone that cannot mend As it was now and ever shall be amen, amen, amen — Emmylou Harris, “The Pearl” Read more →

We Giveth But We Also Taketh Away, Just Like God

 

“As driving behaviors evolve during the COVID-19 pandemic, XYZ Insurance Company is working to reduce auto rates in every state. The national average for those rate reductions is 11%, saving customers a total of approximately $2.2 billion. “‘Current driving data and claims experience show a considerable decline in miles driven and fewer accidents,’ said XYZ Senior Vice President Kristyn Cook-Turner. ‘As a result, we’re looking for ways to continue supporting our customers while we monitor and adjust to trends.’ “‘On the flip side, we’ve also noticed that a lot more of our customers are getting sick and dying,’ Cook-Turner continued, ‘so we’ll be correspondingly increasing premiums for health and life insurance.’ “‘You win a few, you lose a few.’” Read more →

My Soul

 

Oh feed to the golden fish his egg Where he floats in his captive bowl, To the cat his kind from the womb born blind, And to the Lord my soul. — Stevie Smith, “My Soul” Read more →

Praying for Protection

 

Texas state lawmaker calls for ‘praying for protection’ instead of gun reform in wake of mass shooting CNN Let me ask you: what is “gun reform”? Why would it be better than prayer for preventing mass shootings? Pray for protection and if you get shot, take comfort in knowing it was God’s will. Can I get an amen? Read more →

Happy Birthday, Johnny Cash

 

  To honor Johnny Cash on his birthday (Feb 26, 1932), I played this video for my students this morning. Fortunately, God didn’t cut any of them down before the end of class, but sooner or later . . . Read more →

God’s Silence

 

“But just think of Gethsemane, Vicar. Christ’s disciples fell asleep. They hadn’t understood the meaning of the last supper, or anything. And when the servants of the law appeared, they ran away. And Peter denied him. Christ had known his disciples for three years. They’d lived together day in and day out — but they never grasped what he meant. They abandoned him, to the last man. And he was left alone. That must have been painful. Realizing that no one understands. To be abandoned when you need someone to rely on — that must be excruciatingly painful. But the worse was yet to come. When Jesus was nailed to the cross — and hung there in torment — he cried out — ‘God! My God! Why hast thou forsaken me?’ He cried out as loud as he could. He thought that his heavenly father had abandoned him. He believed… Read more →

The Holy Fire is Now the Forrest Fire

 

It’s wildfire season here in Southern California . . . The closest fire to us at this time is the Holy Fire, named either for its proximity to the small mountain community of Holy Jim (see map), or because God is purifying us with flame. Jesus returned as a burning bush and inadvertently ignited Trabuco Canyon. A suspect, Forrest Gordon Clark, has been arrested on suspicion of arson. He looks normal. The fire has been renamed from the Holy Fire to the Forrest Fire. 🙂 My wife is in the insurance business. Every summer she gets calls from people living in fire zones wanting to buy a homeowners policy. There’s no concept of guaranteed issue with homeowners insurance like there is with health insurance. — Does your house have a pre-existing condition? — Yes, it’s on fire. — OK, your first month’s premium will be $500,000. Read more →

Sorrow Without Limits

 

The whole order of things fills me with a sense of anguish, from the gnat to the mysteries of incarnation; all is entirely unintelligible to me, and particularly my own person. Great is my sorrow, without limits. None knows of it, except God in Heaven, and He cannot have pity. — Sören Kierkegaard Read more →

Answers to Persistent Questions

 

Is there a God? No. What is the nature of reality? What physics says it is. What is the purpose of the universe? There is none. Does prayer work? Of course not. What happens when we die? We are put a few feet in the ground to blindly rot and disappear forever. Otherwise, things go on pretty much as before. Read more →

Fish and Whistle

 

Father forgive us for what we must do You forgive us and we’ll forgive you We’ll forgive each other till we both turn blue And we’ll whistle and go fishing in heaven — John Prine, “Fish and Whistle” Read more →

Theological Question

 

I hear people say that bad things happen to kids in schools because God isn’t allowed in schools. Why do bad things happen to kids in churches? Read more →

He Was in No Other Place

 

Cross and Christians, end to end, I examined. He was not on the Cross. I went to the Hindu temple, to the ancient pagoda. In none of them was there any sign. To the uplands of Herat I went, and to Kandahar. I looked. He was not on the heights or in the lowlands. Resolutely, I went to the summit of the fabulous mountain of Kaf. There only was the dwelling of the legendary Anqa bird. I went to the Kaaba of Mecca. He was not there. I asked about him from Avicenna the philosopher. He was beyond the range of Avicenna . . . I looked into my own heart. In that, his place, I saw him, He was in no other place. — The Way of the Sufi Read more →

The Blindness and the Wretchedness of Man

 

hen I see the blindness and the wretchedness of man, when I regard the whole silent universe, and man without light, left to himself, and, as it were, lost in this corner of the universe, without knowing who has put him there, what he has come to do, what will become of him at death, and incapable of all knowledge, I become terrified, like a man who should be carried in his sleep to a dreadful desert island, and should awake without knowing where he is, and without means of escape. And thereupon I wonder how people in a condition so wretched do not fall into despair. I see other persons around me in conditions of a like nature. I ask them if they are better informed than I am. They tell me that they are not. And thereupon these wretched and lost beings, having looked around them, and seen… Read more →

A Question for Michelangelo

 

In the fresco The Creation of Adam in the Sistine Chapel, we all fix our gaze on the finger that gives Adam life, but who is that naked girl God is casually yet lovingly caressing with his other hand? Read more →

I’d Like to Believe in the Existence of a Loving God . . .

 

. . . but I can’t. The quality of evidence is very poor. Do you believe in ghosts, fortune tellers, psychics, werewolves, vampires, astrology, alien visitations . . .? I don’t believe in any of those things, but they’re all out there and a lot of people do believe in a lot of things for which the quality of evidence is very poor. Do you believe that a cow jumped over the moon? I remember reading about it but the quality of evidence is very poor. It seems to be just another made-up story . . . Read more →

Next Page »