Living Biblically – Episode 11 – “Thou Shalt Not Covet”

Well, we’re slowly inching toward the end of this cancelled CBS sit-com and its propagation of works-righteousness religion. This episode looks at the Tenth Commandment.

Living Biblically
Episode 11, “Thou Shalt Not Covet”
CBS, originally aired 7/14/18

Plot

Chip (Jay R. Ferguson) and his co-worker and best friend, Vince (Tony Rock), are informed they have both been nominated for the same yearly journalism award; Chip for his “Living Biblically” column and Vince for his crime reporting.

Chip subsequently hangs out with his “God Squad” advisers, priest Gene (Ian Gomez) and rabbi Gil (David Krumholtz), at the local tavern and gloats about his nomination. The clergymen remind him that the Bible says, “Thou shalt not covet,” and advise him to be content with a job well done and to keep in mind that, in the grand scheme of things, such awards are “meaningless.”

Despite his “God Squad’s” advice, Chip confides to his wife, Leslie (Lindsey Kraft), that he’s struggling to not covet the award. She suggests that he focus on rooting for Vince to win.

At the awards dinner, Chip tries to make everyone believe that he’s rooting for Vince, but when he’s announced as the winner, he proceeds to make a pompous fool of himself via his obnoxious acceptance speech. However, the emcee abruptly stops the ceremony, saying a mistake had been made and that Vince is the actual winner. Chip then predictably states that he doesn’t really care about the dumb award after all, thereby insulting and angering Vince.

Back at the tavern and with the guidance of his “God Squad,” Chip apologizes to Vince for his behavior and the two friends reconcile.

Comments

The premise of “Living Biblically” is that the main character, Chip, a Roman Catholic and self-professed “good” person, desires to be an “even better” person by following the Bible literally. The show is in sync with the “good people go to Heaven” philosophy and at odds with the Biblical message of man’s total depravity and the Good News! of salvation by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone.

That being said, I did appreciate this episode about covetousness to a certain degree. No matter how hard he tried to take the high road, Chip’s pride and selfish desires came through. Catholics and other works religionists maintain that they successfully obey the Ten Commandments with the help of sacramental grace. But when they stand before their Holy Judge, He will reveal the tens of thousands of covetous and envious thoughts and actions they had throughout the course of their entire life. And that is just one of the Commandments! When we stand before the Lord, we will not have one single plea of righteousness of our own. Accept Jesus Christ as your Savior by faith alone and ask the Lord to lead you to an evangelical church in your area that preaches God’s Word without compromise.

“For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.” – Ephesians 5:5

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Living Biblically 10 – “The Bible is sexist”

CBS is currently airing the last several episodes of its cancelled “Living Biblically” sit-com. I was able to catch up with episode 10 via CBS’s free app that I downloaded to my Kindle.

Living Biblically
Episode 10, “Submit to Thy Husband”
CBS, originally aired 7/7/18

Plot

Chip’s wife, Leslie, is pregnant so he decides to start up a weekly poker game with “the boys” before his domestic responsibilities ramp up. When Leslie, a nurse practitioner, comes home from work exhausted, Chip suggests that she should quit her job and stay home to raise the baby, referencing the Bible as the inspiration for his idea. Leslie is angered by what she perceives as Chip’s Bible-fueled aim to dominate her.

The guy crew (priest Gene, rabbi Gil, friend Vince, and the workplace security guard) show up at Chip and Leslie’s apartment for the card game, but Leslie is too angry to play the polite hostess. When Chip’s boss, Ms. Meadows, also drops by, Leslie imposes on her to go down to the local saloon for a “girl’s night out.”

At the bar, Leslie shares her marital conflict with Ms. Meadows. The latter confides she was “raised in the church,” but has no use for the Bible any longer, calling it “sexist” (the character is an unabashed lesbian). She quotes Ephesians 5:22, “Wives, submit to your own husbands…,” as evidence that the Bible is no longer to be taken seriously.

Back at the apartment, a distracted Chip continues to send unacknowledged conciliatory texts to Leslie rather than focusing on the card game. Aware of the details of Chip’s marital troubles, priest Gene advises him that the Bible was written for a different time and needs a “modern interpretation.”

When Leslie returns home, Chip apologizes for his heavy handedness and promises to submit to her as they submit to each other.

Commentary

Ephesians 5:22 is egregiously offensive to many unbelieving…and believing…women. But taken together in context with the entire passage of Ephesians 5:22-33, we see both husband and wife instructed to love the other with a sacrificial, servant love. Yes, the husband is to be the head of the family. Not a dictator, but a servant leader. Many Christian husbands have abdicated their spiritual leadership role. Yes, there have been some men who have unfortunately used the Bible to justify mistreating their wives. Many Christian wives have followed the world’s example and sought to dominate their husband.

The Lord’s instructions for a husband and wife on how they are to function together does not need a “modern interpretation,” although you can be sure that the culture is not going to agree with that.

It stung me to watch this episode and listen to God’s Word being strongly attacked. The Gospel is not connected with this series in any way, folks. This is all someone’s interpretation of the Bible who doesn’t know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.


Husbands, Love Your Wives
https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/80-383/husbands-love-your-wives

The Willful Submission of a Christian Wife
https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/80-382/the-willful-submission-of-a-christian-wife

The (Brief) Return of “Living Biblically”

Every Sunday, I like to quickly peruse through the daily listings in the Sunday newspaper’s television booklet to see if there’s anything worth watching in the coming week, usually without any success, but yesterday I noticed that CBS had put the remaining five episodes of its cancelled sit-com, “Living Biblically,” in its rotation. Episodes 9 & 10 were broadcast Saturday, July 7, episodes 11 & 12 will be broadcast Saturday, July 14, and the final episode is slated for Saturday July 21. Yesterday, I downloaded the free CBS app and watched episode 9.

Living Biblically
Episode 9, “Never Let Loyalty Leave You”
CBS, originally aired 7/7/18

If you remember from my reviews of the previous episodes, the show follows the comic adventures of a lapsed Roman Catholic, Chip (Jay R. Ferguson), who is shaken by the death of his best friend and vows to live his life “100% according to the Bible” with the help of his “God Squad,” his parish priest and a rabbi friend, much to the chagrin of his atheist wife, Leslie (Lindsey Kraft). Chip sees himself as a “good” person who desires to be “even better” by following the Bible literally.

Plot

This episode begins with Chip inside the confessional booth, disclosing his sins to “father” Gene (Ian Gomez). However, the priest is annoyed with Chip because he’s caught him napping at several masses. Chip pleads that it’s hard to stay awake during mass because it’s so boring.

Chip and his wife then meet up with Vince (Tony Rock), Chip’s workmate and best friend, at the local tavern. Vince explains that he’s going to attend his aunt’s Baptist church the following Sunday in search of a prospective girlfriend. Out of curiosity, Chip and Leslie decide they will attend as well.

Chip and his wife are overwhelmed by the friendliness and enthusiasm at the predominantly-Black, Baptist church, so unlike the environment at his Catholic church.  Vince’s Aunt Estelle befriends Leslie and tries to witness to her about Jesus. During the service, Chip sways and dances to the opening Gospel music (“Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus”) and loudly “Amens” the pastor during his sermon, much to Vince’s embarrassment.

Chip and Leslie are so pleased with the service at the Baptist church that they decide to attend the following Sunday as well. “Father” Gene notices Chip’s absence from mass and confronts him. When Chip confesses he’s attending the Baptist church instead, the priest feels betrayed.

As the next Baptist service begins, the pastor welcomes new visitors and one happens to be “father” Gene, who came to the church because he is curious why Chip is forsaking Catholicism for the Baptist church. Chip is impressed that his priest-friend went to all of that trouble and resolves to return to the Catholic church, despite the boredom.

Commentary

The matter of which church a person attends on Sunday shouldn’t be based on where they feel most entertained. The vital question is, Does the church preach the Gospel of salvation by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone or not? Every Catholic church preaches the same false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit. No one can find forgiveness and spiritual rebirth in Christ by following the standard Catholic salvation theology. Unlike the fictional Gene, most real-life priests would have warned their parishioners that they MUST worship at a Catholic church on Sunday or incur a soul-damning mortal sin.

This episode had a few elements of truth, but ultimately retreated to a message of loyalty to a religious brand. Being loyal to your family’s false religious heritage is spiritually useless. Jesus Christ is the Only Way. You must repent of your sin and accept Jesus Christ as your Savior by faith alone.

“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.” – Luke 14:26

Would Jesus have designed a wedding cake for a same-sex couple? AKA the “gospel” according to Joy Behar!

We’ve all heard the recent news regarding the Supreme Court upholding Christian baker, Jack Phillip’s right not to design and create a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

The other day, I was looking through some YouTube videos and saw the one below, which featured Phillips as a guest on ABC’s morning show, “The View.” This episode was broadcast in 2017 before the case went to the Supreme Court.

For eleven minutes, he and his lawyer were grilled by the mostly-unfriendly, five-member panel. At the 4:53 mark, Paula Faris asks Jack, “What do you think Jesus would have done in that situation (i.e., asked to create a wedding cake for a same-sex couple)?” Jack’s answer, that he doesn’t believe Jesus would have made a cake, is met with incredulous disdain. The panel (and audience) largely agrees with Joy Behar (photo above) when she declares, “Jesus is gonna make the cake!”

Blood-bought, born-again followers of Jesus Christ know that the Lord Jesus Christ would never condone sinful behavior by creating a wedding cake for a male couple, decorated with two male figurines on the top, etc., etc. It would not happen. Believers who read their Bibles know this.

The panel presumes to speak for Jesus, although they are not born-again in Christ and do not read His Word. They have their opinion about what Jesus would do in Phillips’ circumstance, but it’s opinion without any Biblical basis. One of the panelists, Sara Haines, takes disparaging pot shots at the Bible for its teachings about homosexuality, and celebrates that “faith has evolved” since the “thousands of years ago” when God’s Word was written. We also hear from the same panelist, who professes to have been “raised in the church” (what church?), that the Bible isn’t to be trusted because it was “translated 60-some times,” whatever that means. The Bible is a closed book to unbelievers.

The Supreme Court ruling is not the end of this. We can anticipate the Bible’s teaching on homosexuality to became an increasingly rancorous point of contention between Bible Christians and unbelievers (religious and secular).

Please watch the video below if you can spare eleven minutes. It’s an education. Jack actually does fine given the unfriendly panel and his lack of experience on television.

 

“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.” – Romans 1:26-27

Ozzie and Harriet serve up some hot dogs!

A couple of Sundays ago, I posted a message about Zweigle’s pop-open red and white hot dogs, the best hot dogs in the U.S.A., made right here in Rochester, N.Y. (see here). After writing that post, I was jonesing for a Zweigle’s white, so I grilled one up for lunch, served on a bun with Rochester meat hot sauce. Delish! But that wasn’t the end of the hot dogs for that day by any stretch!

That very same afternoon, I ventured down to the basement for some manly work. I had a basket of clean laundry that had been piling up for weeks and needed folding. So I set up my trusty Amazon Kindle next to me and searched for an old episode of “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” television show on YouTube. For you youngins out there, “Ozzie and Harriet” ran from 1952-1966 on ABC. It was about a middle-aged couple, Ozzie and Harriet Nelson, playing themselves, and their two real-life sons, Dave and Ricky, and life in the bucolic White, Anglo-Saxon, and nominal-Protestant suburbs. In every episode, Ozzie would always become flustered about something and Harriet would end up diffusing the situation. The Nelsons’ acting and dialogue were as stiff as a two-by-four. I enjoyed the series as a child in the early-60s and I thought I’d dial up an episode on YouTube for a stroll down memory lane to simpler times while I folded laundry. As I was scanning through the many episodes, what should catch my eye but an installment titled, “The Hot Dog Stand.” Ha! What could be more appropriate while digesting my Zweigle’s white hot? So, without further ado, I bring you…

The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet
“The Hot Dog Stand”
Episode # 152,
ABC, originally aired on February 13th, 1957

Plot

Dave and his two buddies, Steve and Wally (played by one of my cast favorites, Skip Young), take a snack break between college classes at a hot dog stand near the campus. The owner, Uncle Ben, relates to the boys that he’s thinking of selling the stand. The three consider buying the business together. Dave asks Ozzie for his opinion and his father gives his blessing right before Dave relates that they’ve already signed a contract.

The entire family pitches in to help advertise the grand re-opening under new management and the subsequent business is good, too good. The hours the boys devote to the business begin to interfere with their college studies, social lives, and sleep time. Stretched to the max, Dave contemplates quitting college and devoting himself full-time to the hot dog stand. However, Ozzie dreams of bigger things for Dave and hatches a scheme to introduce him to a number of financially successful businessmen and professionals in town so as to convince his son of the importance of a college education. To his dismay, he discovers that none of the men he had in mind had graduated from college.

Harriet saves the day with her own plan. She imposes upon some attractive co-eds to invite the three boys to a sorority party that very evening. The guys unsurprisingly come to their senses and happily concede that, going forward, their studies and social lives will take priority over the hot dog stand. To help ease the load, they take on Uncle Ben as a fourth partner, who is in the process of enrolling as an adult student at the college.

Commentary

Critics of these early family sit-coms say they represented a way of life that was unknown to many Americans. Minorities were rarely represented, if at all. Serious topics were never broached. From my perspective at the time, Dave always seemed to treat his younger brother, Ricky, with remarkable kindness and caring, which was amazingly unlike life with my siblings. Shortcomings aside, Ozzie and Harriet and similar shows did convey positive lessons in morality that are noticeably missing from today’s entertainment. The respect the two Nelson boys show to their parents and other adult characters is breathtaking to behold from our 2018 perspective.

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The Nelson Family: Ricky, Dave, Ozzie, and Harriet circa 1957

Off the set, the Nelsons had their share of problems, like any real-life family. Ozzie was said to be an autocratic tyrant who ruled the clan with an iron fist. He shocked the nation in 1973 when he confessed in his autobiography that he was an atheist. Ozzie died in 1975 from liver cancer at the age of 69. Youngest son, Ricky, became a huge recording star in the late-1950s (30 Top-40 hits from 1957-1962), but his career fizzled with the arrival of the British Invasion. He struggled to rebrand himself as a country music artist in the 1970s. A divorce from his wife, Kris (who had been a regular on the TV show from 1963 to 1966), in 1982 left him financially devastated. He died in a plane crash in 1985 at the age of 45.

In the 1950s and early 1960s, with the post-war national economy booming, everyone was pining for their slice of the American dream as exemplified by the Nelsons. But the temporal success and happiness portrayed by Ozzie and Harriet was a mirage. Sixty years later, the national optimism of the 1950s has turned into jaded pessimism and foreboding. Then and now, if your foundation is not Jesus Christ, you really have nothing.

Postscript: Eastman Kodak Company sponsored “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.” It’s interesting to watch their old commercials and to note how the corporate giant (where I have worked for the past 42 years) has been largely reduced to a memory due to changing technology.

Update: CBS opts out of airing remaining episodes of “Living Biblically”

Ten days ago, I posted that CBS had reversed its previous decision and would be broadcasting the remaining five episodes of the un-Biblical comedy, “Living Biblically” (see original post below). I was actually looking forward to critiquing the remaining episodes, especially “Never Let Loyalty Leave You,” which was supposed to air last Monday, May 28th. In that installment, main character, Chip, a Roman Catholic, makes his priest pastor jealous by attending a Baptist church service. Lots of blogging fodder for sure!

Well, last Monday I tuned to CBS at 9:30 p.m., but there was no “Living Biblically.” Instead there was a rerun of “NCIS New Orleans.” Huh? I checked several internet sites and it appeared that the 28th might have been a mixup and that CBS was still planning on showing the remainder of “Living Biblically,” at least through June 25th. However, yesterday I googled the show once more and the website, The Futon Critic, posted on June 1st (see here) that CBS had reversed itself ONCE AGAIN and would NOT be showing the remainder of the series.

If the last-five, unaired episodes ever show up on Amazon, I’d probably watch them because I’m a bit of a completist that way, plus I’m sure I’d have plenty more things to criticize…er, I mean, write about. I’ll say it again: If the show had any “redeeming quality” it was that it accurately portrayed Catholicism’s “good people go to Heaven” false gospel, something ecumenical evangelicals aren’t willing to concede. But in the big picture, souls are better off with this false gospel-promoting show in the trash can.

excatholic4christ

I have some news about a couple of “faith-based” television shows, one on the way out and one on the way in.

Living Biblically
CBS

I previously reviewed the first eight episodes of “Living Biblically,” which ran on CBS from February through April on Monday nights. The comedy was about Chip, a “lapsed” Catholic, who decides to get serious about his religion and live his life “one-hundred-percent according to the Bible” with “laughable” results. The only redeeming quality of the show, if you could call it that, was that it accurately portrayed Catholicism’s “good people go to Heaven” false gospel.

With the final five episodes still in the can, CBS cancelled the low-rated show in mid-April. However, I’ve just learned that the network will allow the series a “last hurrah” by airing the final five episodes according to the following schedule:

  • Never Let Loyalty Leave You – May 28th
  • Submit…

View original post 269 more words

CBS not giving up on “faith-based” entertainment

I have some news about a couple of “faith-based” television shows, one on the way out and one on the way in.

Living Biblically
CBS

I previously reviewed the first eight episodes of “Living Biblically,” which ran on CBS from February through April on Monday nights. The comedy was about Chip, a “lapsed” Catholic, who decides to get serious about his religion and live his life “one-hundred-percent according to the Bible” with “laughable” results. The only redeeming quality of the show, if you could call it that, was that it accurately portrayed Catholicism’s “good people go to Heaven” false gospel.

With the final five episodes still in the can, CBS cancelled the low-rated show in mid-April. However, I’ve just learned that the network will allow the series a “last hurrah” by airing the final five episodes according to the following schedule:

  • Never Let Loyalty Leave You – May 28th
  • Submit to Thy Husband – June 4
  • Thou Shalt Not Covet – June 11
  • It’s Better to Give Than to Receive – June 18
  • David and Goliath – June 25

All of these dates are Mondays and I’m assuming all broadcast times will be at 9:30 p.m. EST as it was previously.

The “Never Let Loyalty Leave You” episode scheduled for this coming Monday, May 28th, looks intriguing. The summary states, “Father Gene is jealous when he finds out that Chip attended Vince’s Baptist church to see another side of religion.” I expect a good dose of “whatever works for you” ecumenism.

Reviews to follow.


Evidently, CBS did not learn its lesson from “Living Biblically” and is coming out with another faith-based comedy show in the Fall titled…

God Friended Me
CBS, Fall 2018 (premier date and time not yet available)

The advertised premise of the new, one-hour show is as follows:

“Brandon Micheal Hall stars in a humorous, uplifting drama about Miles Finer (Hall), an outspoken atheist whose life is turned upside down when he receives a friend request on social media from God and unwittingly becomes an agent of change in the lives and destinies of others around him.”

That’s certainly a wacky premise and I imagine the god that’s presented on this show will be something akin to the New Age, feel-good, false deity that we saw on Roma Downey’s “Touched by an Angel” rather than the God of the Bible. But the Holy Spirit can certainly use a show like this to get people thinking and draw people to the Lord. See the preview video below:

 

 

Final episode: “Pope: The Most Powerful Man in History”

Pope: The Most Powerful Man in History
Episode Six: Courage, Change, & the Modern Papacy
CNN, originally aired 4/15/18

This episode is the last installment in the CNN series and it deals almost exclusively with the 1978-2005 papacy of Karol Wojtyla aka Pope John Paul II.

When Wojtyla was elected pope in 1978, tensions were already escalating in his native Poland between its citizens and the oppressive, Soviet-controlled government. Through direct and indirect means, Wojtyla influenced his countrymen to agitate for political and religious freedoms. Under rising pressures, the communist government voluntarily relinquished power in 1989. Wojtyla won admirers throughout the world for his role in the liberation of Poland. It’s quite ironic that John Paul II’s papal predecessors of the not-too-distant past (as late as the first four decades of the 20th century) regularly entered into concordats with national governments of Catholic-dominated countries, which severely limited the religious freedoms of Protestants.

This segment notes Wojtyla’s significance in the way he changed the world’s perception of the papacy. Due to his extensive globe trotting and his direct involvement in international politics and ecumenical initiatives, Wojtyla changed the image of the pope from an arcane, sectarian religious leader into a global figure of international importance. Biblical prophecy anyone? When the world’s inhabitants are threatened by an apocalyptic crisis, there is only one religious leader they will turn to; the pope. Wojtyla was instrumental in elevating the papacy to its current preeminent position in the eyes of the world.

I enjoyed this series quite a bit. Much of the information that’s presented is in stark contrast to the idealized versions of the papacy and church history that are fed to Catholicism’s credulous membership. As I’ve mentioned previously, the series’ glaring drawback is its lack of a conservative evangelical voice among the many commentators. Below are links to my reviews of the the previous five episodes:

Episode 1: The Rise of the Pope

Episode 2: The Resignation of Benedict XVI

Episode 3: The Price of Progress

Episode 4: A Church Divided

Episode 5: The Wartime Popes

 

Friday odds and ends: Living Biblically, and pamphlets on Catholicism and segregationism

Let’s get caught up on a few odds and ends that have collected on my plate:

Living Biblically
Episode Eight: Show Hospitality
CBS, originally aired 4/16/18

Rabbi Gil, one-half of Chip’s “god squad” religious advisors (the other half being Gene, a Catholic priest), confides that he discovered his wife is having an adulterous affair with a fellow rabbi. Sympathetic Chip obeys the Biblical admonition to show hospitality by inviting the rabbi to live with him and his wife until he can get his life back together. As one would expect from a comedy show, Gil wears out his welcome in a hurry. Chip’s wife, Leslie, wants the rabbi out, pronto, but Chip hesitates. However, he soon realizes that by allowing Gil to stay, he’s only enabling the rabbi to delay moving on with his life.

No Gospel here, folks. How many episodes left? Only three? Wonderful!

Breaking news alert: Just found out that CBS has cancelled “Living Biblically” and will not air the remaining three episodes. 😁


Is Roman Catholicism Biblical?
By William C. Irvine
eBook version
CrossReach Publications, 2018, 15 pages

New Zealander, William C. Irvine (1871-1946), a missionary to India, was most noted for his Christian apologetics book, “Heresies Exposed.” It’s not clear exactly when this short pamphlet was originally published although the latest references date it to the early 1920s. Some of the briefly-reviewed topics include Rome’s idolatrous statuary, the church’s low view of Scripture in comparison to its traditions, the papacy, Mariolatry, the mass, the confessional, and Purgatory. Despite the subsequent window dressing changes introduced at Vatican II, Rome still teaches the same core doctrines. I wouldn’t recommend this pamphlet because of its brevity. You can find much better and more contemporary resources on the internet for free. Check my Links page here.


Is Segregation Scriptural?
By Bob Jones, Sr.
eBook version
CrossReach Publications, 2018, 23 pages

The first church my wife and I attended after accepting Christ in the early 1980s was independent, fundamental Baptist. Fundamental Baptist churches are independent to a large degree, but network with other like-minded churches via pastor conferences, missionary support, and seminary support. Back in those days, there were three main camps of IFB churches. On a scale of increasing conservatism, there were those that aligned with John R. Rice, like my church, those that aligned with Bob Jones, Jr., and those that aligned with Peter Ruckman.

Because I’m interested in the history of fundamentalism, this ePamphlet caught my eye. Evangelist Bob Jones, Sr. (1883-1968) was one of the leaders of the fundamentalist movement. He founded Bob Jones College (later University) in 1926 and was one of the pioneers of religious radio broadcasting. His legacy was carried on by his son, Bob Jones, Jr. (1911-1997), and his grandson, Bob Jones III (1939-).

Jones Sr., based in South Carolina, was an outspoken advocate of racial segregation and viewed the growing Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s with great distress. In this 1960 radio address, Jones appeals to Scripture to support his views:

“And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place.” Acts 17:26

Yes, from this single verse, Jones and other Christian White segregationists proposed the “kinistical” argument, that God meant for all races to stay within their preordained geographical boundaries. Jones argued that because sinful White men had disobeyed God’s laws and forcibly brought Blacks to America as slaves, the segregationalist policies in the South had to be maintained.

From our vantage point, this is a difficult address to read. Jones was on the wrong side of history and, more importantly, on the wrong side of proper Biblical hermeneutics and Christian charity. But it is a good reminder to us that anyone, including believers, can twist Scriptures to support their sinful purposes. Bob Jones University did not accept unmarried Black students until 1976, eight years after Bob Jones, Sr.’s death. The university enforced a policy prohibiting interracial dating until 2000. To order the ebook version of this historical oddity, see here. To view online for free, see here.

For more on Kinism, see below:

What is kinism? Is it biblical?
https://carm.org/what-is-kinism

Television Update

Time to get caught up on our Catholic-themed television shows…

Pope: The Most Powerful Man in History
Episode Five: The Wartime Popes (this title is a misnomer because the episode is almost entirely about Pius XII)
CNN, originally aired 4/8/18

This episode focuses on the extremely controversial papacy of Eugenio Pacelli aka Pius XII. Previously the papal nuncio/ambassador to Germany, Pacelli was appointed Cardinal Secretary of State by pope Pius XI in 1930. In that capacity, he negotiated a number of concordats (treaties) with various European and Latin American countries, most of which contained clauses that recognized Catholicism as the state religion and suppressed Protestant churches. Pacelli’s brother, Francesco, had been instrumental in negotiating the Lateran Treaty in 1929 between the Vatican and fascist Italian dictator, Benito Mussolini. Eugenio Pacelli negotiated the Reichskonkordat with Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany in 1933. Eugenio was elected to the papacy in 1939 for his diplomatic experience in the face of increasing international volatility.

Pope Pius XII has been strongly criticized over the last 70 years for his deafening silence in the face of the Nazis’ genocide of European Jewry during the Second World War. His defenders insist the pope chose to work quietly behind the scenes in attempting to help Jews rather than risk additional persecution with a public denunciation. While Hitler’s brutality affected Catholics throughout Europe, the church also recognized the German fascist dictator was a bulwark against its most feared and hated enemy, Russian Soviet communism.

Pius XII would later define the doctrine of the physical assumption of Mary into Heaven as dogma in 1950. Admirers have been pressing for Pacelli’s canonization despite his controversial papacy.

Those who aren’t aware of the controversy surrounding Pius XII and the Holocaust will find this episode quite interesting.

Next and final episode: “Courage, Change, & the Modern Papacy,” airs tonight, 4/15/18


 

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Living Biblically
Episode Seven: Let Us Pray
CBS, originally aired 4/9/18

Chip confides to his “god squad” (a priest and rabbi) that he has some difficulties with praying (he mentions the “Hail Mary” prayer as one of his regulars). Priest Gene advises Chip to keep trying and promises prayer will eventually come naturally. Shortly afterwards, Chip is stuck in an elevator with some of his co-workers and his prayer seems to facilitate their rescue. Chip is not happy about his atheist mother-in-law staying with him and his wife for a short time, including her constant jabs at his religion. When she suffers an apparent heart attack, Chip’s prayer for her seems to result in her medical stabilization (the heart attack turned out to be a peptic ulcer).

No Gospel here, folks. It’s all about the religion of Cain.

Next episode, “Show Hospitality,” airing 4/16/18