G-Poppers… June 26th, 2015

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2615)

Jon close up

G-Pop was wondering how much a sixteen-year-old girl could truly understand. Not because she’s unintelligent or devoid of grasping adult concepts–it’s just that all information remains merely data until curiosity soaks it up. It’s hard to be curious about anything but your own life at sixteen.

But on the other hand, there is something going on in the country that is significant and needs to be addressed.

Even though in collective horror we watch foreign renegades parade a prisoner in front of cameras and behead the hapless fellow, we have to realize that it is equally as ignorant and counterproductive to “head” our captors.

We do not cut off the head of the people we arrest. Instead, we give them a “head”–a face, a personality, a back-story, interviews with their friends, and speculate for days on what prompted them to commit their recent atrocity.

The average criminal receives millions and millions of dollars of free publicity when the main reason that the wickedness flowed from him or her was the desire to be known.

It’s like feeding a bear cub in your backyard and wondering why you go out with provision one day and get eaten by the fully grown beast.

Somehow or another we have to stop sensationalizing evil. I understand that most people do not find goodness, joy and praise-worthy deeds nearly as interesting as the vile expose of a murderous act, but in some fashion we need to strip these perpetrators of the trappings they so desire.

G-Pop saw a news report last night where the picture of the person who had just killed his wife was some sort of Photoshopped air-brushed version, making the murderer look like Denzel Washington.

It’s wrong–and not morally wrong, but culturally wrong.

People who do atrocities against their fellow humans should not be granted face, body, story or future.

How would we achieve this? Well, let’s start with a simple thought: Only heroes get stories.

If you decide to kill someone, you become a silhouetted cut-out on the news, without a name–or given a name not your own to further mock the stupidity of the pursuit of notoriety. We certainly have no problem calling people “John or Jane Doe” when they’re a corpse. Therefore, when someone’s a dead man walking due to crimes against humanity, why can’t they be “Jake or Janice Dork?”

If we as a society do not communicate that such behavior is abhorrent and refuse to grant space, then those who are tormented with obscurity will gladly give their last breath and life for seventeen minutes of fame. (The original fifteen minutes seems to be growing.)

I am fully aware that those who work in the news room will object to this line of thought because they make a living off of affording us gory detail. But gory detail could still be provided without granting the one who produced the anguish any photo space.

How could G-Pop share this with a sixteen-year-old girl without coming across as an old man who is out of step with time?

Would she understand that to give people what they want is to encourage them both to continue to want and also to do things that will get it?

Yes, people who behead are truly barbarians.

Yet I must tell you, in our culture, the decision to “head” our villains only encourages the insanity of evil.

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G-44: Blogging… October 3, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2369)

Paul writing

Paul was a blogger.

Although it’s commonly accepted that he authored books, what he really penned were entries which he posted to various individuals and congregations, expressing his mood in the moment.

So sometimes we have:

  • happy Paul
  • sad Paul
  • angry Paul
  • theological Paul
  • philosophical Paul
  • bruised Paul
  • attacking Paul
  • judgmental Paul
  • merciful Paul
  • Pharisee Paul
  • and Gentile Paul

Nothing much is achieved in reading the New Testament without understanding this concept. For if you isolate off one of Paul’s posts and attempt to characterize his entire message by its content, you will soon be frustrated by another entry, which seems to be contradictory.

Before you become critical of this grab-bag styling, you might want to consider the audience Paul was trying to reach. First, he worked around the erroneous premise of trying to be “all things to all men so that he might save some.” Here’s the problem with the idea: the Jews seek for a sign, the Greeks want wisdom, the Romans crave power and the Barbarians yearn for an identity. It’s difficult to believe that any singular paragraph, clump of verses or accumulation of chapters could appease all of these sensitivities.

So by the time the first century came to an end, and all of the original folks who ate and lived with Jesus were dying off, the message was suffering from a “clarification crisis.”

Some people favored Paul, some Peter, some Apollos, and others, some no-name who didn’t make the Biblical cut.

Simultaneously, the Romans were gradually getting tired of killing Christians and because of the failings of their Empire, were looking for a fresh motivation. So as time marched on, the Romans embraced this “Mesopotamia Message” as their own, and of course, in the process, swallowed it up with their bureaucracy.

The Romans, being authoritarians, felt that the weakness of the Pauline preaching was that it allowed too much freedom for the individual, without the structure of a governing body filled with superiors.

So this new Roman church was structured exactly the same as Rome itself–with an Emperor, a Senate, tribunals and even, to a certain degree, legions of soldiers.

The ironic result was that a God who came to study man was ignored in favor of men who decided to study God.

Meanwhile, the Barbarians discovered a potent identity. They could defeat Rome and rule the world, such as it was.

So a message which was intended to place the Kingdom of God within the heart of each believer was now placed within the whim of a potentate.

Alas, my friends … leave it to human beings to make things worse when they organize. 

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