One Sunday morning in 1960, the Episcopal pastor of a 2,500-member parish in suburban Los Angeles told his congregation that he and 70 other members had been “speaking in tongues."At the end of the service, an assistant priest pulled off his vestments and stalked out, saying, “I can no longer work with this man!” Tumult reigned. One man stood on a chair, shouting, “Throw out the damn tongue-speakers!”
Cartoons are, by their nature, caricatures: they are oversimplified in order to make a forceful point and provoke debate. Editors know that one powerful cartoon can generate more furor than dozens of provocative articles, so they make a rough calculation: Will the cartoon generate light as well as heat? Will the publishing of it be, as St. Paul would put it, not only lawful but beneficial? Did Flemming Rose, culture editor of Jyllands-Posten, make the wrong calculation in publishing cartoons that featured the Prophet Muhammad?
The Ten Commandents are prefaced not by an order but by a breathtaking announcement of freedom.
Do not look for this mountain on a Bible map. It juts out not from the topography of Galilee, but from the topography of God.
Dr. Spin: A seminary class was debating whether the Garden of Eden story (Gen. 2-3) reinforces or resists the oppression of women when one student interjected: “It’s all just spin anyway. You can spin the text any way you want.” But Professor Jacqueline Lapsley, ruminating on the unlikely story about Balaam and his donkey (Num. 22-24), says two principles of biblical interpretation can guard against spin: our interpretation shouldn’t reinforce our own self-interest, and it should serve the larger purposes of God, that is, God’s love “for Israel, for the church and for the whole world” (Interpretation, January).