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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

At the risk of getting him in trouble, I have a list of 5:

Top 5 'Collins-isms' Of The Past 3 Weeks (possible paraphrases)

5. "I hear a lot of sneezers and coughers in here. Make note of the sneezers and coughers, so that when we all fall ill with various afflictions, we can beat them to death."

4. "You are used to seeing David as a Jesus figure. The message of the Bible is that Jesus is a David figure." (Lesson: Respect the original OT context)

3. "If you read Psalm 24 and say, 'How great is it, that Jesus kept the Law in my place?' I will beat you, because that's not what it's saying." (Lesson: We should strive for holiness)

2. "This is a love song, a poem. Not a particularly good one, mind you, but some of you were no doubt conceived with a song like this playing in the background."

1. "I'm hearing what you are saying, and it's horrible." (response to a question)

Added Bonus: In response to a "pastoral question" regarding what Collins would do with a congregation moving too quickly from the original context and intent of the Old Testament to seeing Christ, in the midst of a nuanced and careful answer, he was interrupted by a student, who said, "I'll tell you what he'd do: he'd just yell at them." [Raucous laughter] And without missing a beat, Collins added: "Now he's got it."
Anybody who knows me knows that I'm a bit girl-crazy. [What are you, 12?--ed.] Yes. After a fashion. No one of the fairer sex has seen fit to snag me off the market, so yes. Anyway, one meets with a certain lack of success (or limited success) and the natural reaction, albeit perhaps not the most productive one, is to question one's desirability and so forth. I'm not breaking any news here, surely. Lonely dudes, can I get a witness? I know you feel me. [You're a jobless, penniless bum in graduate school who's apparently about to torpedo your most viable career option. Would you date you?--ed.] No. But kats get lucky all the time like that. I had a friend who introduced me to the film version of "Phantom of the Opera" directed by Joel Schumacher. Yes, I know, it's not faithful to the story/play, blah blah, shut up. Anyway, I personally really identified with the Phantom. And yes, it begins on creepy terms, given the fact that Christine Daae is just a girl when the Phantom takes a shine to her, a la "The Thorn Birds" [You just lost all the papists, bringing that up.--ed.] Well, sorry. It happens. No, the funny part is, I've never actually seen "The Thorn Birds." But a story about a priest who falls in love with a woman is always going to some kind of cultural marker, so long as priestly celibacy is a norm in the Catholic West. I digress. The Phantom. I like him. I understand him. That is, I suppose, until he started killing people. But deformity and being on the fringes, this I understand well, whether I choose to admit this as my reality or not. I know tons of good-looking women who went for other dudes, too. In any case, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and his minions decided to add a song to this film called "Learn To Be Lonely" that I really love. The words ring true, in some sense, in a nice, accessible, singable form. [Is 'singable' an actual word?--ed.] It is now! The song is an odd, bittersweet encouragement to me, as I consider all the possible permutations of my estate. Still, I hope this line isn't true: "You've always known/Your heart was on its own." I didn't come here to tell you that, as the great Cosby would say.
I'm doing That One Thing At That Secret Place (let astute readers understand) whose outcome, whose mission, if I choose to accept it, would entail a great many changes. I don't want to put some girl who loves her Lord the way she knows how through that kind of change. Just a bomb I drop in the middle of the relationship: "Oh, by the way..." "Uncle Bryan" was already married. If he hadn't been, that would have been a fun reality show to watch. (But not for Bryan.) It's certainly not over, but I actually expect matters to conclude in that fashion. Should I wait until the crisis is over? Seriously, what should I do? [That's what you get, chasing theologically committed girls, dummy.--ed.] At least they're holding to a dogmatic principle! How comforting. (Not) I wish God would give me the faith one way or the other. No, I pray he does.

Monday, September 13, 2010

I deserve to be thrown out of our little ecclesial protest movement for a paragraph like this:
[Also, it is neither the Law or the prophets, so it is wisdom by the process of elimination using the Jewish categories. Goerling says of Psalm 1, “Psalm 1 is a didactic Psalm, a guide to life.” He adds, “In form and content it belongs to the wisdom Psalms.” Tuell adds, “Just as Jesus' beatitudes (Matt 5:3-12) are descriptive rather than prescriptive, so the beatitude pronounced upon the righteous in Ps 1 describes rather than defines them.” What this may mean is that Collins’ concern about legalism arising from certain readings and views of merit may be premature. It seems quite possible that the blessed man can both “deserve his blessedness” and be in a totally dependent covenant relationship. We’ll return to this later.] [Sheesh, hurry up and become a Catholic already, and stop leading us on.--ed.] Well, you shouldn't be that surprised; as I told the great Tim Butler, "The Catholic Church is like a girl I'd lead on, but never marry." [But you will, and you know it.--ed.] I fully expect this to happen, but I'm not forcing anything. Frankly, I want some coherent push-back from the Reformed. If you want to keep me, you'll have to fight. The big problem for the Reformed (and maybe Protestantism in general) is that the law of prayer is not the law of faith with respect to systematic theology. When it is consistent, frankly, it's Catholic at best; when consistently bad it's just antinomian gnostic crap. It'd be OK to simply agree with the Catholic Church, except...we left because we didn't, or so we thought.