Sunday, December 27, 2009

Odds & Ends

  • We had awesome weather for Christmas -- blue skies, no breeze, temperatures in the mid-30s -- but now we're back to the usual murk.
  • Reading Deuteronomy, I'm increasingly puzzled by herem, i.e. the command to utterly and completely destroy Israel's enemies. The standard explanation is that "God had to meet the people where they were" -- yet the herem made no sense to them either! (NB how many times Moses, Joshua, or Samuel had to deal with someone who'd disobeyed by not destroying their enemies.) So what's going on here . . . and more to the point, how do you preach these passages?
  • The Network Advertising Initiative lets you opt-out of the data-mining that's being done on you and your use of the Web -- and even if you like the idea of somebody keeping track so they can figure out how to sell you more stuff, it's still a good idea to check out this site.
  • I know we're supposed to fuss about the commercialization of Christmas -- but if you turn off the TV and stay out of the malls, then it's really not all that bad.
  •  theCheckoutLine offers advice for the terminally ill, as well as those who are living with them. I don't like its non-judgmental stance viz. physician-assisted suicide -- mainly because I think it's wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong -- but most of the other counsel it offers is pretty good.
  • And I'll close with this quote for the New Year: "You can't turn back the clock -- but you can rewind it."

No comments: