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.

Monday, February 26, 2024

Opus 2024-038: Male Assumptions

I was contemplating the issues of marriage and the relationships between men and women.  This rabbit trail was formed while thinking about a physical problem my wife is having and how I would work out a solution if it were me.  The important condition here is “if it were me”.  It isn’t me.  She doesn’t want to hear my ideas.  She would rather suffer than have my two cents worth.

This made me think of a mantra that has gone around and reinforces this idea.  My first contact with it was a book called Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.  I heard it repeated in other sources.  The idea is that women don’t want a man to solve her problems.  She just wants a man to listen.  To us men this is nonsense.  It is from Venus.  What do you expect?  It still seems to be an accurate summary.

Men problem solve by experiment.  We are rooted in what the scientific method was when it was genuine.  If something won’t turn left, try turning it right.  If your computer won’t start the first thing, you check is to see if it is plugged in.  You experiment and look at the results.  If that didn’t work, try something else.  Eventually you will get there.

Women problem solve by sharing their feelings.  I have no idea how this solves anything in the physical world but it seems to work in the pseudo-sciences like sociology.  Whether their solutions really work, men would question.  That does not matter because they don’t want our opinions.

Could this be another reason why there are more men than women in science?  Could the presence of more women in science be one of the reasons that science doesn’t seem to be working any more?  I would never ask these questions out loud.

At the risk of insulting your intelligence let me remind you that we are talking generalizations, not stereotypes.  We all know there are women who problem solve and men who talk about their feelings.  Feel free to problem solve without fear of losing your feminine mystique.  Men, feel away.  You can still be a man.  We are talking generalizations.  Learn the difference while I still have a head.

homo unius libri

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Opus 2024-037: A Straightjacket for God

Does God have free will?  Or is He bound by our theology?  

As I contemplate God in the mornings I come up with a lot of questions.  Many of them will only be answered in eternity because of my limitations.  Others are worth thinking about.  One is this idea of how different schools of theology look at the nature and character of God.  It involves how they understand salvation and apply it in their teaching.

I always have a love/hate relationship with people who claim that salvation has no volitional quality to it.  They take the statement that we are saved by grace and make our choice something that is totally out of our hands.  Their reasons are noble.  They emphasize the sovereignty of God.  Nothing can violate that sovereignty, except their theological declarations.  What gives them the power to declare that God cannot grant men free will?

Whom are we that think we can define God?  I guess the Psalmist asked the same question, “Who is man that Thou art mindful of him?”

We need to be careful to understand God as He reveals Himself, not as the theological gurus define and limit Him for us.

homo unius libri

Friday, February 23, 2024

Opus 2024-036: Knowledge and Value

My thinking started with wondering how I would know about God if I were born in a pagan culture centuries ago. The Bible tells us that through nature we would know certain things. That would probably be limited to the attributes of God which are observable such as creativity, variety, and power. It would not include the moral qualities of God.

The moral issues I could learn by the work of the Holy Spirit speaking to a willing heart.  I could get the basics of the moral law by just the inward work of the Holy Spirit and willingness to listen.

From there I went to people who don’t know about Jesus and how they can be saved and how limited my knowledge is and my understanding. That doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. The plan that God has given is clear involving Jesus and the blood and forgiveness and faith. That does not mean that there are is no other way that God has provided. It doesn’t mean that because I don’t need to know it.

Which brings us to the question of knowledge, and why we seek knowledge, and if we need knowledge. If I were given the information about the temperature at the bottom of a gravity well on an unknown planet, I would be able to intellectually look at the number and fit it into my knowledge base. I could add one and subtract two.  In spite of that, it would not mean anything to me, because I could not grasp it. Also, it would be totally immaterial because it would not affect anything, anywhere, at any time.

Much of the knowledge we gather is of this nature.  If knowing that temperature will allow us to develop technology to beat cancer, that changes everything.  If it allows us to build a faster than light starship that can be world changing.  If all it does is add to the list of numbers in an encyclopedia somewhere, it is totally useless information. Much of what we think we need to know falls in that category.

Don’t be impressed by knowledge.  Be impressed by knowledge that is applied.  That is often called wisdom.

homo unius libri

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Opus 2024-035: Soup Art

I see a business opportunity that is being missed.

I imagine you have seen some of the headlines about the deep thinkers who think throwing a can of soup at a famous piece of art will save the planet.  So far I think they have been foiled by a transparent sheet over the pictures that were put there for freak-shows like this.  

I think we should have an auction of the clear sheets that have the soup on them.  Sell them as some new type of modern art.  From what I hear about the showings at modern museums they would take this very seriously.  It would make the silly, destructive pawns names to go down in history.  They would be studied by the art departments at the Ivy League schools.  They would be as valuable as Hunter’s works.

I would like a commission, if you please.

homo unius libri

Opus 2024-034: Does This Dress Make Me Look Female?

Which will history remember best, a man who put on a woman’s swimsuit and won medals competing against women or a woman who stood up to the cancel culture that cheered him on?

Who will get a chapter, Lia Thomas or Riley Gaines?

I guess it depends on who wins the culture wars that are going on now.  We often focus on the corrupt partisan judges and bought-off district attorneys.  We get hot under the collar at politicians and who is running the country.  At the same time we keep buying Nike’s and vacationing at Disneyland.  Put aside the idea of civil war and violence.  I have a feeling that if you are not willing to set aside Mickey Mouse and Ben and Jerry’s you would not be manning the ramparts any way.

As much power as they seem to have, understand that the deep state and George Soros could do nothing if we would not cooperate.  I just read how Hitler called off a boycott of Jewish businesses because their prices were so good the population did not cooperate.  Learn to make discerning decisions.  My family stopped passing any money to the Disney Empire years ago.  We won’t even buy their used stuff in yard sales and yet we keep hearing about the great time our friends had at Disney World.  They don’t seem to want to understand.  Disney finances their box office bombs with the ones that do well and the parks people visit.

Remember Mervyns’?  Many people don’t.  They shut down not too many years after Christians started boycotting.  Interestingly they were bought out by Target before they decided to kick out the Salvation Army and go woke.  Do you still have a K-Mart in your neighborhood?  We have an empty building that used to be a K-Mart.  They started declining after we boycotted them.  It may not make any difference if you don’t do anything but it will do even less if no one takes a stand.

There are inconveniences involved.  If we don’t go the extra mile now the inconveniences may become genuine hardships.

Pray.  Speak out.  Stand up.  Take a risk.  The chances may not come very often so keep your eyes open while you still can.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Opus 2024-033: The Ultimate UFO

There is a long list of Theophanies starting in the Garden of Eden.  Some are a voice from heaven, dream or vision.  Do those qualify as theophanies?  A theophony is the appearance of Jehovah in some sort of observable form.  He can appear as a man.  He appeared as a burning bush.  He spoke out of a storm.  The point is that God is spirit and His presence is so holy that it would kill anyone who saw Him directly.

We see this clearly in a conversation Moses had with God in Exodus 33.  God tells Moses,

(Exo 33:20 KJV)  And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.
This is why Isaiah was panicked,
(Isa 6:5 KJV)  Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.
We have numerous times when God communicated with humans.  We have Him talking to Adam and Eve in the Garden.  He spoke to Cain.  From there we have a long list of communications.  It continues in the New Testament with Saul on the road to Damascus and Jesus appearing to John in the Revelation.  

You might think of Jesus as the ultimate Theophany but that would not work because He was fully man, God in the flesh.

I wonder if avatar an acceptable modern word for theophany?

Stay alert.  You may be the next to file a report.

homo unius libri

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Opus 2024-032: Invest in the Future

Now is a good time to remember to pray for the political leadership of our country.  We have an election coming up and we need more godly men and women in the seats of power.

I would say that we need to especially pray for Mike Johnson.  I have not been happy with everything he has done but we just saw something that would not have happened if he were not in the position of Speaker of the House.  We saw part of the Biden criminal gang at least called out publically.  It was mainly symbolic but it is a symbol that we have been waiting for.

I would also suggest that you spend some time looking into how your local representatives vote.  If you are not being served well then make sure that you do everything you can to primary people out.  Keep talking in the lines you stand in and the waiting rooms you frequent.  Plant seeds and extend your influence.  

We have nothing to lose but our country.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Opus 2024-031: Headlines: Futile Necessity

Mayorkas has been impeached.  It is being called meaningless.  Among the comments is that he is just a scapegoat, it is just partisan politics, the Senate will never follow through, the Republicans are just blowing smoke.  All these observations are true but it is still important that it happened.  He was impeached.  He will not be convicted.

It is a message that needed to be sent.  It needs to be sent to others.  I would not be upset if Biden and most of his top leaders were impeached.  Would it get rid of them?  No.  Would it tell the people of America that the Republicans are serious?  Yes, and that is a message that people need to hear.

Politics is theater and certain plots must be presented.  Let the curtain go up on the next act.  I think the country is ready for the grownups to start disciplining the naughty children.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Opus 2024-030: Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina...

I probably should say this while I still can.  I am not sure I will survive the next incarnation of Blogger.  I mentioned that they had posted a more modern look.  It is possible that they will have figured out at way to force me to conform to some of the things I have been working around.  This is part of their quest for knowledge about everyone in the world.  I may find that I am not willing to give it to them and thus my posting will end.

Although I find the entire song rather boring I love the clip that was used to publicize the Perons.  Remember the phrase, “Don’t cry for me Argentina...”  I once listened to the whole song and found it hard to stay awake.  My point is that if Blogger makes it impossible to continue with them I will consider other venues.  I don’t know if I will actually use them, but I will consider.

So if I end up fading into the history of vanity it will be because I decided that Google didn’t need me to give them the middle name of my firstborn even if it is just to make my account more secure.

What Progressives forget is that progress is supposed to imply moving forward and making things better.  It does not mean more control for the elites and less liberty for the peasants.

homo unius libri

Opus 2024-029: Ode to Old: The Gilded Agers

A lot of people want to write off the elderly.  They are past their prime and have little to contribute.  I am here to say that is not the case.  Let me give you a couple of examples.  

Joe Biden is past his prime.  That assumes he ever had one, but give him the benefit of the doubt.  Even though he is blatantly out of touch with reality, look at what he has accomplished.  He has brought the greatest republic in history to the brink of dissolving.  And keep in mind that he still has at least until next January to keep it on the skids.  If his handlers manage to steal another election our dust bin of history status will be assured.

And look at the contributions of George Soros.  One man with his billions has managed to buy off every major judicial system in the country.  His bucks have made fair trials, the rule of law and civilized behavior a thing of the past.  Add to that the realization that he has trained his son up to follow in his steps.

So don’t tell me you can’t make a difference just because you are old.  If you wonder how history will judge you remember that it is the winners who write the history books and those who persevere who get to revise them.

homo unius libri

Monday, February 12, 2024

Opus 2024-028: A Paper Miracle

We live in wonderful times.  All you need to say is “dental anesthesia”.  Get the idea?  Need another one?  How and cold running water.  How about A/C.  There are a lot of miracles that we take for granted.  I found myself staring at one this morning that I had never thought about before.


I arrived at this as I was reading my Bible in the morning and I thought of what a stereotype I represented.  You have all seen pictures of little old ladies with a book open on their lap and you knew it was a Bible.  That was because of the flexible leather binding and the way in which it molds itself to your hands and legs.  I looked at mine and my attention went to the paper.  I started thinking about what a miracle it was.

I am looking at a book less than two inches think with about 1,700 pages.  Almost every page had printing on both sides.  The paper was strong enough to last for years of bending and touching.  It was thin enough to be manageable.  It was opaque enough to print on both sides.  I would not have any idea on how to start making paper except getting some wood and rags.

What a miracle it has been.  With the addition of the printing press it became the major tool of modern civilization and the spread of knowledge to all classes of people.  One reason so many people were illiterate in past ages was that books were so expensive.  Now we have paperback editions of ancient classics that anyone can afford.

The digital revolution takes it to another level but one miracle is enough for one day.

homo unius libri

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Opus 2024-027: Firsts: Veggie Enchilada

We were at a Mexican restaurant in Texas.  That is not as exciting as being at one in California but you have the trade off of being in California.  Weaker Mexican food trumps the Peoples’ Republik.

I have been working through the menu at this place and my eye fell on their Veggie Enchilada.  To be honest it didn’t fill me with anticipation but the different chilies listed made it a real possible discovery.

Not really.  It was still just a tortilla wrapped around a bunch of limp vegetable matter.  It did not rise to the occasion.  About all I can say for it is I was willing to try something new.  That is not as exciting as it is portrayed.  

Next time I will try their cheese version.  How can you go wrong with cheese?  I hope I don’t find out.

homo unius libri

Opus 2024-026: Critical Mass: Spare Us

Earlier I asked the question of which is more important to God, the righteousness of the leaders or the faithfulness of the general population?

I personally would go with the general population.  If it were the leaders then no nation would be safe and there would be little the common people could do about it.  That brings up the question of critical mass.  In case you don’t remember your high school science, critical mass is the term used to determine if there is enough nuclear material to start and continue an atomic explosion.  In terms of what I am talking about it would be more a question of how many righteous people God would require to spare a nation.  What percentage?  What kind of a ratio?

If the people are the measure of God’s wrath then what kind of percentage of faithfulness do you need among the people? We have an example of this in the destruction of Sodom.  It was a major city in the area.  Of course that could mean only a thousand people but it was still major.  God was willing to spare it for just a few.  How many will God require for America?

Are we ready to be judged or is there enough salt left?

If God feels we need a purging to initiate revival then get ready for hard times.  Keep in mind that He promises to see us through.  If you know anything about the history of persecution, it often is extreme in one place and barely a ripple just down the road.  That is one way in which God brings punishment on a people as a whole and spares those whom He wants to spare.

Be faithful.  He will be.

homo unius libri

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Opus 2024-025: Beware! Google Ahead

I noticed today when I logged on that Google was informing us that they would soon have a new and improved sign-in page that will have a “more modern look and feel.”  I am already wondering how many more clicks and buttons will be required to get done what I am already doing.  Notice how optimistic I am.  I assume I will figure out how to do what I am already doing.

It reminds me when I was forced to move from my first computer, a Kaypro using C/PM.  It was at least a decade before Windows caught up with some of the things I had been able to do.  It is the modern idea of progress.

As they say, sit down, hold on, shut up and enjoy the ride.

homo unius libri

Opus 2024-024: Follow the Directions

Trusting God is a way of life and the way of thinking. My son understands technology in a way that I can never grasp. I trust his knowledge. I don’t need to understand it. The better I understand it the better I can operate in this world of technology, but I will not understand on his level no matter what I do.

I watched him walk his mother through a process over the phone of getting her computer working again. All she had to do was follow directions. She had to trust him. She had to believe what he was telling her. It wouldn’t be enough just to believe it and not to do it. It would not do her any good to do anything if she didn’t know what she was doing and didn’t have somebody she trusted.

How like this is to our daily spiritual walk.  We must trust what God tells us.  We must put feet to the lessons.  God can only go so far without us moving out in faith.

Interesting times lie ahead.  Make sure your faith is ready to walk.  Make sure your trust is ready to hold on.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Opus 2024-023: Don’t Pray for Healing

Recently the pastor was sharing about his wife’s heart problem.  Like many people she has developed atrial fibrillation, A-fib.  She had gone through a procedure called cardiac ablation.  They send a lazar up your blood vessels and singe a section of nerve in the heart.  This blocks the too frequent messages being sent and returns you to a regular heart beat.  At least that is the story and they are sticking with it.

I have been praying for her healing but got a surprise.  He shared that what was needed was not to heal because if the healing continued she would be forced to endure the procedure again.  The heart would reestablish what was there before, recreating the problem.  Now that is an interesting twist.  I made a joke about praying wrong.

Isn’t it wonderful that God knows what we mean even when we don’t.  This is a classic application of a Bible promise,

(Rom 8:26 KJV)  Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
Actually praying for the opposite was not how I usually thought of this verse but in this case it fits.  God thinks of everything.

homo unius libri

Friday, February 2, 2024

Opus 2024-022: Crazy Talk

Why am I talking to a cat?  Since I have had a cat dumped on me and it insists on getting in my face I find myself asking it stupid questions.  Do I expect an answer?  Do I think it understands?  Am I crazy or have I just surrendered to the cat culture?

Is this a sign that I am losing it?  I hope not.  At least I am aware that asking the cat what it thinks it is doing will not generate a response.  I will consider it a victory if it will simply understand the meaning of “NO”.

homo unius libri

Opus 2024-021: Whether Weather Happens

The wisdom of the elders said, “It’s gonna be a cold winter.”  Remember those days.  People used to look at the Farmers’ Almanac or observe how certain insects behaved and know what was coming.  The response was to prepare.  Chop more wood.  Can more tomatoes.  Knit extra sox.  It was called life.

The wisdom of the children now says, “We’re all gonna die!”  In their panic they are ready to do anything the government calls for so that they can be safe.

Weather and climate have always been with us.  Plague and infestations have come on a regular cycle.  War and rumor of wars are a way of life.  Panic doesn’t solve anything

Examples of historic climate change are all through literature and the news.  

If you read Genesis you find frequent reference to famine, probably caused by drought or insects.  
Abraham fled to Egypt during a famine.  Later his decedents went again during one that was seven years long and was predicted by Joseph when he interpreted Pharaoh’s dream.  Krakatoa exploded and the volcanic ash disrupted the seasons for years.  Mount Vesuvius erupted and buried Pompeii.  

Are we looking at disaster in the future?  Of course.  Volcanoes still happen.  We are waiting for the earth-shattering eruption in Yellowstone.  The giant meteor is expected any day.  The sun could give us a natural EMP blast that would cripple our technology.  Biden could be elected for a second term.

So get right with God.  Store up toilet paper.  Learn to start a fire and plant some kale.  The kale is to remind you that things could get worse.

homo unius libri