What’s Wrong with the World

The men signed of the cross of Christ go gaily in the dark.

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What’s Wrong with the World is dedicated to the defense of what remains of Christendom, the civilization made by the men of the Cross of Christ. Athwart two hostile Powers we stand: the Jihad and Liberalism...read more

Recent Comments

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 22, 19:23:

his heirs would be very happy today. Yeah, man, I wish I had a laundromat in Berkeley. Preferably, though, one without tie-dyed machines, if it's all the same to you. I wonder though: if the area went through gentrification, would it be filled with gentrified people who used to be hippies, or gentry hippies (which is possibly even worse, except for more showers)? ... [More]

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by al on Jan 22, 16:42:

"I had a nightmare last night; I dreamed I owned a laundromat in Berkeley." I believe it was one of his standard lines. Of course if he actually owned the property and kept it his heirs would be very happy today. ... [More]

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 22, 08:28:

he is also an artifact of the shift to the right in Anglo-sphere politics that began in the 1970s (sixties in Ca as we are always a bit ahead) I blame Jerry Garcia. "I had a nightmare last night; I dreamed I owned a laundromat in Berkeley." -- Reagan, sometime in the 60s. ... [More]

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by Jeffrey S. on Jan 21, 21:42:

Well said Tony! Kennedy is just shameless...and certain voters lap it up!! That's the state of Chicago politics for you -- it is tough being a conservative in this town. ... [More]

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 21, 20:37:

Well, I wish I could agree with you. I didn’t have a father in my life. [applause] Somebody shot him Somebody correct me if I am wrong here...the "logic" (if one can play so fast and loose with the term as to use it here) is that having fathers in the home is NOT the solution, because someone might shoot them there? Can we at least hope that the applause was NOT from an approval of his father being shot, but of...well, what? There isn't anything with any CONTENT for them to have applauded. That Chris ... [More]

Tangled Up in Blue

Comment posted by al on Jan 21, 14:21:

"Mayor Emmanuel is no conservative" Agreed, he's just a horrible person but he is also an artifact of the shift to the right in Anglo-sphere politics that began in the 1970s (sixties in Ca as we are always a bit ahead). Without getting into the weeds, I would just point out that politicos like Emmanuel and Daley are much reviled on the left and justly so. Emmanuel and Geithner were two of Obama's three worst decisions. ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 17, 07:34:

Fantastic sources, Lydia. Thank you for bringing them to our attention. I have said it before, but it bears saying again: If God is God, and capable of creating the world, capable of saving the world from sin in Jesus Christ, capable of inspiring the gospel writers to write so worthily about what is importantly True - then He is capable of generating events whose TRUE AND FACTUAL recounting will successfully make the Truths manifest that those gospel writers were so intent on manifesting to us. God has ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Callum on Jan 17, 04:11:

Put that in your pipe and smoke It! Seriously though, great blog post. I can't remember if it was Erhman or Licona who said that they had read all Christian literature in the relevant time periods in order to get as good an understanding as possible of the religion (I think it was Erhman I'm specifically recalling but both may have said something of the sort). Why is this never mentioned by the "higher truth" people? You even cite a contemporary of Plutarch. ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Danny on Jan 16, 12:59:

I think it is instructive that the high-minded claims of non-bias come from some extremely rigid individuals whose minds appear to be closed shut to other possible, dare I say more reasonable and therefore more probable, explanations. Some might say there seems to be an agenda, a *bias* even, in operation here. Outstanding work on all of this, Lydia. ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 16, 12:41:

the medium whereby profound truth, more truly true than mere facts could ever be, was communicated "More truly true" is a beguiling phrase, but here the work it does is encouraging us to think a falsehood is true. In contrast, we have from these fantastic quotations Lydia found the true early church answer to that notion: And if he who glorifies God the Father is thus afraid lest he should seem a false witness in narrating a marvellous fact, how should not he be justly afraid, who tries to establish the ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 15, 23:07:

It's such a trivial discrepancy, I must say. Luke uses the term "the eleven" about which main disciples were present at that meeting, and John says that Thomas wasn't there, which would mean (at most) ten. That's it. The whole shebang. It's not even a biggie. The idea that maybe "the eleven" was used in a "group" sense (as "the twelve" undeniably is) is quite sensible. So is the idea that Luke simply wasn't told that Thomas wasn't there and was told that "the disciples" or "the apostles" were there. Even t ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Glenn Gardner on Jan 15, 22:52:

Perhaps one of the intended outcomes of the apparent discrepancy between the two accounts is to get us discussing it at this level of detail and to draw our attention to the fact that Thomas was the only disciple that needed to see and touch Jesus' hands and side because of intellectual doubt due to lack of empirical evidence. There were at least 10 times more disciples that needed to see and touch in order to overcome their heartfelt fear of man in a turbulent political, social, and religious climate. Just ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Dale on Jan 15, 22:35:

Great find, Julius Africanus. Since it is MLK day, I will add: can you imagine, after MLK's assassination, his close followers making up all kinds of stories about what he said and did? Is that how people honor their revered leads? Seems so implausible. ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 15, 20:38:

Thanks, Brad! Appreciate it. ... [More]

Let Ancient People Speak for Themselves

Comment posted by Brad Cooper on Jan 15, 20:28:

Another excellent and much-needed article! Thanks once again for your excellent work, Lydia. ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 15, 19:03:

Wow, great job. That's a lot of work! Just one correction: The scholar who hypothesized that John changed "My God, why have you forsaken me?" into "I thirst" is Dan B. Wallace. He teaches at the conservative Dallas Theological Seminary and is known primarily as a textual scholar who has debated Bart Ehrman on whether we have a reliable text of the New Testament. So he's regarded as quite conservative and in fact as something of a defender of the faith against a skeptic like Ehrman. Of course, being an exp ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 15, 18:50:

Vince, I'm sorry your comment got caught in our spam filter. Be sure to let me know via e-mail if that happens again, because our automatic e-mail alerts don't always work. We've had to take the allowed number of links way down to get rid of things offering people products and so forth. Thank you so much for the transcription! That's great! ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Vincent Torley on Jan 15, 17:54:

Hi Lydia, I've transcribed up to the end of Bad Habit #1. More to come later. http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/dr-lydia-mcgrew-on-six-bad-habits-of-new-testament-scholars-and-how-to-avoid-them/ ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Step2 on Jan 13, 17:29:

There was a black bear in my neighborhood of northwest Atlanta last May, believe it or not. Social media lit up. I believe it, years ago we had a bear showing up in various backyards around my town which is dozens of miles from their natural habitat. Everyone at work was talking about it a little anxiously and speculating about where it might show up. Some joker (not me this time) suggested it was going to next appear ordering a meal at the McDonald's drive-thru. Needless to say, that broke the tension ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 13, 10:49:

Vincent, No, it was just done on the 6th, and I don't know of any speedy typist with the motivation and time to sit down and transcribe it. I talked (aside from Q & A) for about an hour and a half! I myself prefer reading transcripts to watching long things on Youtube, so I sympathize, but it just doesn't exist right now, and AFAIK Jonathan doesn't generally get his webinars transcribed. Feel free to put it on high speed and make my voice a little squeakier, though! And if anyone wants to transcribe it, t ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Vincent Torley on Jan 13, 10:01:

Hi Lydia, Do you have a transcript of your Webinar? Some readers over at The Skeptical Zone are requesting one. Thanks. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 13, 07:54:

Oh, boy, buffaloes in Yellowstone - a whole different topic. I don't know what they are like "in the wild" and without protection. Not sure anybody does, really, I suspect. They are big enough - the adults - that in North America the only thing that even remotely could take one down in nature would be a whole pack of wolves, and I doubt even that, for a healthy one. Pretty sure the wolves would rather not try. But in Yellowstone they are protected, and they act like they own the place. When we visit ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 12, 22:31:

There was a black bear in my neighborhood of northwest Atlanta last May, believe it or not. Social media lit up. Presumably, this particular creature followed a creek in from the hills. We're talking 20-30 miles from anything rural. Some buffalo once strolled through our campground in Yellowstone. My mother wisely advised giving them a very wide berth. She was vindicated in her caution later when a knucklehead got gored taking pictures too close. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by al on Jan 12, 19:05:

"But I would much rather face a single wolf than a single bear." Depends on the bear (a single wolf might be rabid - endemic in much of the west - so any wound could put one in a world of hurt). Black - in general yes; brown/grizzly/polar - not so much. A few months ago, my neighbor to the west called me and said she could see a bear in one of her apple trees and would i mind dealing with it (she is in a wheel chair). I hiked over and did the whole shouting/ banging on things and he ran away (which is n ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 12, 17:28:

Tony, even a 175-pound wolf makes me a little bit icy inside. Such a creature might be capable of advancing through rifle fire. I mean, a .300 blackout round probably does kill him -- eventually. But not in time to keep him from killing me. Yeah, I wouldn't want to have to face one without a good weapon, either. But I would much rather face a single wolf than a single bear, any day: I grew up with a fairly aggressive german shepherd, so I have some familiarity with its basic physical accoutrements - thoug ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 12, 16:59:

I thought the scholarly consensus attributed those extinctions largely to climate change (because the last thing academics want to do is project a ruthless hunter's mentality onto early American Indians, while the first thing they want to do is teach us lessons about our impact today.) For myself, the arrival of humans seems entirely more plausible. In what sense was North America more conducive to mega-fauna populations when it was covered in snow and ice year around, as opposed to when it warmed up a bit ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by al on Jan 12, 15:06:

"ruthless hunter's personality" "I mean, a .300 blackout round probably does kill him..." Hummm. Healthy non-Plains Ape predators are just hungry and inherently conflict adverse - they merely earn their living. A Plains Ape, when confronted with something novel, ponders "how might I kill it" as one of his first thoughts and bemoans a lack of "ruthlessness". We might meditate on the loss of North and South American mega-fauna and the contemporaneous spread of Plains Apes from Asia to those continents. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 12, 00:30:

So this Dire Wolf Project really does propose to say "come on in"? But of course, because they have some sense, they only want the look of the Dire Wolf, not the nature: At present, each dog when bred begets itself in conformation, the Dire Wolf look is not complete. Because Lois concentrated on the health and the mellow, calm, non-barking temperament before looks, the breed's conformation is still under development. Seems to me that a Dire Wolf without a ruthless hunter's personality is no more an actua ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 10, 20:42:

I don't doubt that many large animals in the 600 range - and even higher, can run darn well. The largest lions top that weight, crocodiles can run at 20 mph for a bit, and giraffes - much larger than 600 lbs, can go 25 or so. All of them faster than me. The point is that dogs and wolves do not get that big. They would need a different skeleton to manage it. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by al on Jan 10, 15:26:

Up the road: http://www.direwolfproject.com/ "A 600 lb wolf would be dog food - it would be so fat that it could not begin to run." Depends on the skeleton - Dire wolves were bigger so beef it up and things might work out; some Smilodons fell in that range. A 1,000 lb bear can easily outrun an East African Plains Ape. A few years ago I was out in the woods with Dozer - an American Bulldog - and what I at first took to be large but lean wolf suddenly emerged from a bunch of ferns. We were mulling our o ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 10, 09:26:

The sociology of the NT evangelical world is very weird. These guys have a sort of niche in which I believe they think of themselves as sort of "despised by both the left and the right." They are more conservative than the mainstream, secular NT scholars, which is to say they actually believe that miracles occurred and that Jesus rose from the dead, etc. (Though in my opinion several of them unintentionally undermine the *basis* for believing that, but they don't realize that.) And several of them go out t ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 9, 21:41:

I don't facebook any more than I am a twit, but it seems likely to me that any 'friend' you lose over allowing a scholar on your program who argues, in a civilized manner, that the gospel writers meant what they wrote as being so outré, so beyond the pale that it is no longer permissible to associate with you - good riddance, I would say. People who would find offence at this probably need to be offended. To be shocked, really. Because they are not thinking, they are merely reacting the way they've been ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 9, 16:51:

I appreciate the fact that the lyrics to this song are better moral teaching than the lyrics to "Devil Went Down to Georgia." I like the latter a lot. It's a kickin' good song, if you like that kind of thing. But one has to admit that it seems to teach the listener that it's a good thing to make what is actually a very stupid bet with the devil. Seriously, you get a gold fiddle if you win and lose your soul if you lose? And why assume the devil will be such a gentleman as to acknowledge defeat? I glory in J ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Tony on Jan 9, 16:44:

A 600 lb wolf would be dog food - it would be so fat that it could not begin to run. The biggest wolves around are not really any bigger than the biggest dogs around - we have been breeding dogs for probably 10,000 years and some breeds we have selected for size, and I can guarantee you "natural" selection won't top human breeding efforts. The biggest dog in the world is 200 lb, and it's enormous. The biggest wolf recorded was 175 lb. (You can find claims of a 300 lb wolf killed, but then you see the ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 9, 11:46:

Ha! Straussian reads of Grateful Dead songs? It is interesting how Robert Hunter wrote half the Dead lyrics but barely played a single instrument. (He also worked with Dylan, by the way.) My son is on to something, though: a 600-pound wolf cuts a compelling figure anywhere. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 9, 11:38:

Hey, it's the archives of a fusty listserve with annotations to an obscure lyric. Just my kinda thing. I used to belong to a Medievalists' listserve back in the 90s when the Internet was just begun. This is exactly the kind of esoteric research those guys would love to share. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Paul J Cella on Jan 9, 11:19:

Dear sweet sunshine. I've got Lydia looking up Grateful Dead lyrics. Heh. ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 9, 08:51:

Also: There's a large house visible across the fields which is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a dog, probable inspiration for the Hound of the Baskervilles (an old local family). Funny tie in there. The song "Dire Wolf" was inspired, at least in name, by watching the Hound of the Baskervilles on TV with Garcia. We were speculating on what the ghostly hound might turn out to be, and somehow the idea that maybe it was a Dire Wolf came up. Maybe it was even suggested in the story, I don't remember. We ... [More]

Don't murder me

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 9, 08:40:

Nice art work. :-) Thought you'd find this interesting: The situation that's basically happening in 'Dire Wolf' is it's the middle of winter, and there's nothing to eat for anybody, and this guy's got a little place. Suddenly there's this monster, the dire wolf, and the guy is saying, 'Well, obviously you're going to come in, and why don't you pull up a chair and play some cards?' But the cards are cut to the queen of spades, which is the card of death, and all the cards are death at this point. The situa ... [More]

"Six Bad Habits of NT Scholars and How to Avoid Them" on Youtube

Comment posted by Lydia on Jan 8, 16:28:

What was funny was that, as you'll see if you watch the video, Jonathan was extremely low-key in the whole thing. He was just the host. Very hands-off. I did virtually all of the talking (and a lot of talking). One wouldn't even have known for sure (I think) from the webinar whether he agreed or disagreed with me. Most of the questions he brought up were about inerrancy and a few other things. He mostly read questions people had submitted. It's true that he didn't get in there and defend Licona's position o ... [More]