Monday, November 27, 2006

How many people in America have your name

This is a interesting time waster but it's fun:

There are 299,968,595 people in the United States of America. If everyone in the U.S. lined up single file, the line would stretch around the Earth almost 7 times. That's a lot of people.

The U.S. Census Bureau statistics tell us that there are at least 88,799 different last names and 5,163 different first names in common use in the United States. Some names are more common than others.
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

I was surprised that my name isn't more common.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Christmas Shopping

One bad thing about being in seminary is that you can't do you Christmas shopping until after finals, which for me this year will be December 15. So, I wasn't one of those people who went to the mall at 5:00 am to shop. I put on the TV this morning to see if they had any reports about early shoppers and of course they did. They had people who slept in line overnight to be able to shop at 5:00 in the morning. One woman said that she planned to spend $6,000. Now, that's just nuts. Who spends that much at Christmas? And why in the world would you line up the night before? They must of had some really great sales. The only sale that I saw that would have been worth it would have been to get a DVD player for $50 but even then I wouldn't sleep in line overnight. A couple years ago I was trying to find a DVD player for my daughters and I didn't want to pay more than $100 but I was having trouble finding them. I went to Wal-Mart in PA and found a bunch of them. PA is where I go when I can't find something in NJ. They don't have problem with inventory the way we do over here (here's a post I wrote about another item I had trouble finding).

I'm generally able to find the things I need to buy the last week before Christmas, though this year I am getting a little nervous because Samantha wants an ipod and Sarah wants this. I might have to go next week (I'm certainly not going today). Even though we have so many malls in NJ (there are four about a 1/2 hour from my house), they will be super crowded today.

BTW, I got some good news about my test schedule. Sometimes you get a test schedule that is really hard, a test on Friday and then one on Monday or Tuesday. Or you can have one on Monday and another on Tuesday or Wednesday or even two on the same day. This year I have the best schedule ever! I have a test on Friday and another one the following Friday. So, I very pleased with the schedule :-)

Well, I'm off to work on my unjust judge paper. Enjoy your shopping day :-)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

Image and video hosting by TinyPicI hope you all (both of my readers :-) are enjoying your Thanksgiving Day celebrations and have much to be thankful for. I'm thankful I finished my exegetical paper for my OTHT class and that I was able to get to the seminary in time yesterday. I had to get it there by 5:00 pm and I was still writing it in the morning. But I prayed a lot and the Lord kept me going and I finished it with time to spare for traffic. I took my daughters with me since they were off from school, they were lured into going with the promise of a Chick-fil-a milkshake but we didn't eat lunch until 2:30! They were starving!

We went to the bookstore while we were there and I was dismayed to learn that they have rearranged the bookstore by author and not subject. Now, just think about that for a minute, how in the world do you buy a commentary by author? Who knows the name of the author of a commentary? I go to the bookstore and scan the section to see what type of commentaries they have, now that's impossible. One of the side benefits though is that I'm not going to be doing too much impulse buying anymore. Or purchasing more than one book on a particular subject.

After we left the seminary, I had to drive to the Princeton Theological Seminary Library (they let students from other seminaries take out up to five books and they have a huge selection of commentaries) to turn in my commentaries for Genesis and to pick up commentaries for Luke for my Gospels exegetical paper. Yes, that's right, now that I've finished one paper I have to write another by next Thursday and it is actually going to be harder than the one I just finished. I am not looking forward to it. I will be working on it today and the rest of the weekend. My daughters are going to stay with my parents for a couple days, so I should be able to get a lot done (I hope, but I'm having a very hard time concentrating and writing).

I will be posting the papers after my finals. I didn't hate my paper for OTHT so it will make it easier to post, though it has Hebrew in it so you will have to download a font (I'll post a link for it when I post the paper) to read the Hebrew.

And for your viewing pleasure, a blast from the past. I'm old enough to actually remember this episode:


Monday, November 20, 2006

Update to Studio 60

One of the comments I have been getting in regard to my review is that I didn't clearly state that this was a sketch about censorship and not really about Christ. That the writers were aiming at the censors who were trying to stop them from taking the Lord's name in vain. They can't understand why Christian values were being upheld by censors. Why should the network care about what would offend Christians? Because everyone takes the Lord's name in vain. And they used the Jesus character to show that even Jesus doesn't care about taking his own name in vain, so why are we censoring? And this is what offends a Christian because that isn't true. And that is where I came in. Now, go read the review with this context. You can see that the context doesn't really change my criticism of the show. They don't understand Christ, so I suggest they stick to targets they do understand because comedy is funny when there is truth (like when Harriet was trying to stand up to the executive and not break ties with a Christian group she had been associated with for years, the group canceled her appearance because they thought she wasn't going far enough, now that was funny because you know that something like that would happen -- sad, but with some truth).

Poke fun at Christians all you want, I don't care, in many respects we deserve it. But the point I made at the end of the article holds true, they need to turn around and poke themselves because they deserve it just as much as we do.

But leave Christ out of it because he doesn't deserve it.

Now, if we discuss anything, let's discuss their view of Christ because their view of Christians isn't the point of this review.

And I should make myself clear on one final point, even though this show drives me crazy, it doesn't drive me crazy because it's a mirror. I believe the portrait they point is skewed and doesn't reflect me at all. They drive me crazy because they think they know us but they don't.


Sunday, November 19, 2006

Studio 60

I published this over at Reformed Chicks but I thought you guys might be interested in it.

I've been watching Studio 60 and each week it's getting harder to watch. I think Matthew Perry is a great comedic actor but his character's hatred of Christianity is making it hard for me to watch the show. And the fact that the writers know absolutely nothing about Christianity doesn't help. A recent episode demonstrated that. They did a sketch about taking Jesus' name in vain (I'm assuming that you don't live in a box and that you know that the show is a combination West Wing meets Saturday Night Live). And in the sketch, which was truly unfunny and painful to watch, Jesus doesn't care if they take his name or his Father's name in vain because "caring for the weakest among us is my thing." That would be news to anyone who has read the Bible:

Exodus 20:7 "You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
Though the Bible is filled with many verses about God's care for the "weakest among us," Jesus came to glorify the Father and to set his people free from sin.:
John 17:1 When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, "Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, 2 since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4 I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed. 6 "I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word.
It's not just about you being able to do what you want to do without any regard to sin. And that is the main point of the sketch. The writers thought it would be funny to have a Jesus who doesn't really care about what men do, he loves them and wants them to do their own thing. They have to be able to take his name in vain because they get frustrated, that's just the way they are. They think that God understands our weakness and excuses it but that's not the case. He does understand our weakness and yet still expects us to live up to his standard but in his grace he came to pay the penalty for our weakness, not to excuse it. He takes the penalty freely, without payment, it is a gift. But if you reject that gift, then you will pay the price yourself. That includes taking the Lord's name in vain -- which is part of the Ten Commandments. Pretty clear. If you're going to mock the religion you might want to learn it first. It might make for funnier comedy.

But what is worse (a whole lot worse) is that Jesus says he forgave his Father for the cross. Why in the world would you write something about Jesus when you haven't a clue about the Jesus you are ridiculing. Comedy is funny when it's based in truth, it is so clear that the don't have the slightest clue who Jesus is.

Jesus would never say something like that because God the Father is perfect and has no need to be forgiven. Jesus laid His life down. God didn't force the cross on Him, He picked it up. He made the decision to be obedient to the Father, He did it willingly:
Matthew 26:39 And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, "My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will."
Sheesh, people read the Bible, it's pretty clear.

One final note to the producers and writers of this show: do you really think this is edgy? Beating up Christians has been done to death. How about doing something really edgy, how about you beat up sanctimonious writers of liberal shows who beat their viewers over the head with their propaganda. So much so that they lose viewers week after week, now that might be funny.

Politics, Hagar in the Wilderness and the Weblog Awards

The 2006 Weblog Awards

That's what I've been doing :-) But I wanted to let you guys know about the Weblog Awards in case you hadn't heard that they are taking nominations until November 24th. And the best thing of all, you can nominate yourself (I didn't have to, I begged the Reformed Chicks readers to do it for me). They have all kinds of categories (except religion and Christianity) like parenting, conservative, liberal, etc. Go check them out and nominate your favorite blog. I nominated mostly mommy blogs since they don't get the recognition that they deserve.

Now, back to reading about Hagar and how her experience parallels Moses' experience.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Being Five

This one is very funny! My anonymous comments are usually from spammers.

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