Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Opus 2016-280: New Terms: Anachronistic

I continually read and hear people making a case that American slavery was worse than slavery in other cultures.  They point out that slaves had certain rights in ancient cultures and were often better off than free servants.  The ones making the case are usually Progressives who hate America and want to turn us into a workers paradise that approach slavery this way.  The slavery they describe has a lot in common with the nanny state they want to push us into.  We should all be servants of a government that wants to keep us safe and harmless.

The problem is that this is saying that slavery was acceptable in every other culture but ours because the masters were humane.  I am sorry.  That doesn’t wash with me.  A slave was still a slave.  Slaves may have had some rights but none of the ones that make you a free man.  They tell us that slaves in Rome were often highly educated and wealthy.  That may be true but they could still be executed by their master if he was unhappy or having a bad day.  Serfs had some rights but they were not free.  Keep in mind that slavery was not an American phenomenon.  It didn’t start here and it ended here before it ended in much of the world. 

Try to understand the world of the past.  In all cultures the great mass of people were in that class that made them nothing but servants.  Even the nobility often lived knowing that the monarch could demand their head or property any time they were in a bad mood.  The “free servants” of Rome were treated so badly that being a slave could be an advantage.  Neither was free in the modern sense.  It is a false comparison given by people trying to make America look bad instead of being honest.

Was slavery a bad situation?  Of course.  Was it an American evil?  Don’t be foolish.  Does it still exist?  Definitely.  Try not to take the standards of today and impose them on the past.  It is called anachronistic. 

homo unius libri

Opus 2016-279: Should-a-Beens: A Was

I missed the debate last night and it is my daughter’s fault.  She is in town for a few weeks and we had an evening of father/daughter time.  In the process I pushed all of the worlds cares aside and just enjoyed being a parent.

She reverted to childhood and wanted to go to Dave and Buster’s.  It is a hangout with food and rooms full of video games.  We drove race cars, played air hockey, rolled balls and generally had a good time.

It was only later that I realized I lost every time. 

That is okay.  When I consider my children and how they are turning out I figure I have won on the things that count.

I hope you enjoyed the debate.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Opus 2016-278: Ode to Old: Clothes Make the Man

Since I lost weight and found out how clothes are supposed to fit my wife has been calling me a clothes horse and complaining about all the stuff in my closet.  She does this even when I point out that she is the one who keeps buying stuff when I say I have enough.  And I point out the shirts that my daughter has bought me.  But I digress.

I watched a man who makes me look young walking in front of me.  I noticed how high his belt was and how short that made his pants look.  It may me wonder at what age I will start pulling my pants up to my armpits.

Since you only know me online, you will never know.  I might not notice until my wife tells me but at that point I might not remember.

Happy aging.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Opus 2016-277: Discernment Watch: Rome Reprise

One of the big questions in history is, “Why did the Roman Empire fall?”  Of course it didn’t really fall, it just crumbled but the question is still, “Why?”  Some have blamed it on Christianity.  Some on slavery.  We ask the question because we are looking for clues to our own culture.

I have my own theories and of course the primary theory changes on a regular basis.  What I notice is that they all come down to people being selfish.  For example, crime and violence are on the rise.  They have always been with us so what is different?  It used to be that a person breaking the law accepted it was wrong but did it anyway.  Now they make all kinds of claims to being the righteous one.  It will not be crime that destroys us but selfishness.  It is the self centered view that neutralizes all attempts at reform.  Not a lack of laws but a lack of morality.  It is not the things that are illegal but the things that are not yet illegal and are used by those demanding their own selfish way.  It is the way in which we rationalize for our own benefit.

Finding the answer to the question really won’t matter because the people who control the power don’t really care about the country as much as keeping their own power.  None of the justice campaigns is concerned about justice, just power.  Feminism is not really about equality but gaining superiority.  Civil rights laws were written to avoid things like affirmative action and quotas yet they are the standards anyway.  Education has become a method of brainwashing and indoctrination rather than a foundation of liberty.

But we still ask the questions and have responsibility for our own lives and choices.

Cynical?  No, realistic.

homo unius libri

Monday, October 17, 2016

Opus 2016-276: Cornerstone Considerations: D of I, A Wake Up Call, part 2 of 2

Riots.  Insurrection.  Violence.  The criminal element is taking advantage of the moment.  It is like a societal temper tantrum.

But what if they are on to something?  What if this is about justice?  What if the system is so broken that it can’t be fixed?  What if the real problem is complacency on the part of the majority.  Those of us who are not rioting assume that because all we see are looters and gangsters that there is no legitimate gripe.  It is easy for us to overlook the underlying way in which the system is rigged.  I imagine that is how the English Crown saw Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty. 

Maybe we need to think a little deeper here and not just assume.

It isn’t the fourth of July but maybe a look at the Declaration of Independence is in order.  It was a document that was responding to real life situations. 

Here is what Thomas Jefferson said in the Declaration of Independence,
“But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security.” 
This came after many attempts to resolve the issues both peaceful and thugish.  At one end you have the Olive Branch Petition that tried to reason with King George.  At the other end you have the mob that burned and looted the head tax collector’s home in Boston.  Because the King ignored the issues it led to the American War of Independence.

Perhaps those of us who are concerned about real justice need to look a little closer at what is happening in the big cities.  I doubt if the dudes with their faces covered and carrying TV’s out of stores are concerned about the big issues and the Declaration of Independence but that does not excuse us from refusing to consider.  There will be no easy answers but there are probably some right answers.

homo unius libri

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Opus 2016-275: Cornerstone Considerations: D of I, A Wake Up Call, part 1 of 2

“Demonstrations” have been in the news a lot lately.  A more accurate description would be riots and looting.  The thugs who are out causing the chaos are not the hard working poor people who are really suffering.  Generally they are the ones who have never done an honest day’s work but expect to have all the benefits of advanced civilization.  The problem is that when the barbarians burn down the factory after stealing all the electronics they quickly run out of I-Pods and there is no one to make more.  When they burn the fields and go through the grocery store dumping out everything their mother made them eat as a child, it doesn’t take long for them to starve to death because there is no one left to grow, process, deliver and market what they think is theirs.  Eventually they need to sleep or fall down in a drunken stupor and the inevitable happens.

The barbarian thinks he is king of the hill because he has the biggest muscles and the benefit of surprise.  He expects to be feared and obeyed. 
(Judges 5:25 KJV)  He asked water, and she gave him milk; she brought forth butter in a lordly dish.
Sounds good, but he must have drifted off for a nap because...
(Judges 5:26 KJV)  She put her hand to the nail, and her right hand to the workmen's hammer; and with the hammer she smote Sisera, she smote off his head, when she had pierced and stricken through his temples.
They will get theirs but a lot of us may suffer in the mean time.  Barbarian thugs do little but destroy.  But, and it is a big but, what if they are right?  They will never provide a solution but what if they are pointing us to a real problem?

To be continued...

homo unius libri

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Opus 2016-274: Thanks Thoughts: Band Aides

Recently I put a big slice in my thumb as I was cutting up a salad.  It was a bloody mess.  I thought about stitches but decided I was too macho for that.  It took me a while to get my wife to stop saying “where they have always been” when I asked about the Band Aides but I finally got them. 

I found that I was grateful for such a simple thing as plastic bandages.  There was something almost magical about them.  Compression was not stopping the bleeding but when I wrapped that piece of plastic and gauze around the flesh and cranked it down, nothing leaked. 

It isn’t just thankfulness for the invention.  It is also being grateful that I could buy enough to change the dressing three or four times a day.  Another thing that has come clear to me is that I am not only grateful that they exist but that I can afford the better ones.  There are areas in life where quality makes a big difference.  It is very helpful to have a bandage that will not fall off in 15 minutes.  The cheep ones tend to do that.  The better ones you have to force off.

I am healed.  I am thankful for the small advances in our civilization as well as the big.

homo unius libri