Here is the home page of the Audubon Society named after John James Audubon. Among other things, Audubon liked to kill birds. There used to be huge flocks of passenger pigeons in this country and Audubon and many others would go out and just start shooting into the huge flocks of birds, killing hundreds. Passenger Pigeons are now extinct.

Now the Audubon Society wants money so other birds don’t go extinct, which is fine but seems highly ironic to me. It would be like me killing thousands of cats in my life and then having a cat conservation group named after me. I haven’t killed any birds in my life and no one named a bird conservation group after me.

Speaking of birds, if you’ll notice there are many more birds singing outside now. Yesterday morning I heard chickadees, goldfinches, crows, and a pileated woodpecker and for Northern Wisconsin, that’s pretty good for a half hour in January. I didn’t shoot any of them either.

Baseball commissioner Bud Selig now has to OK the trade and then Sammy has to pass a physical and the Cubs and Orioles could have a deal! At the end of last year I debated whether I wanted to follow baseball anymore. Now that the Cubs have released Sammy, I feel as if I get a new start. I can’t wait for the next few months to go by and get baseball going again. Old things are passed away, all things have become new.

Surah 5 The Table, The Table Spread

verse 12 lists things you can do to impress Allah and says if you don’t do them you are resisting faith. Faith, according to the Qur’an means doing work for Allah, essentially saving yourself by impressing Allah.

verse 17 points out again that Christ is not God.

verse 38 says that thieves should have their hands cut off, now that’s forgiveness if I ever heard of it.

verse 40 states that Allah punishes and rewards whom he pleases and this is stated throughout. However, when you read you see that by being good you can get rewards and being bad gets you punishment. In what way then, is Allah in charge of punishing and rewarding? Seems to me the people are in charge of it based on what they deserve through their actions. Oh, that’s a brilliant point Jeff. Thank you, thank you very much.

verse 46 “And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah.” How exactly does the Gospel come anywhere close to what’s going on in this book? I don’t get it. There’s no way Jesus agrees with this. Jesus’ Gospel was not a confirmation of the law, it flew in the face of the law, in case you missed that point, it was the perfect law-followers who killed him!

verse 51 “take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends.” Oh yeah, now that sounds like Jesus.

verse 75 presents irrefutable proof that Christ is not God, get ready, hope you’re sitting down. “Christ the son of Mary was no more than an apostle; many were the apostles that passed away before him. His mother was a woman of truth. They had both to eat their (daily) food.” Jesus ate food, people eat food, therefore, Jesus is a people not God.

verse 82 the Jews get a real bad rap in this book even though he says many times that the Jews are God’s people.

verse 101 and 102 tell Muslims not to ask questions about things that cause you trouble, if you do you’ll pretty much lose their faith. Basically, the Qur’an is so certain it’s right you shouldn’t question what it says. Seems to me if it were truth Allah wouldn’t mind if we asked questions to figure it out. Asking questions is the key to learning, perhaps this is why Muslim nations don’t turn out much technology.

verse 110 Jesus was given the Holy Spirit by Allah and Jesus used the Holy Spirit to make a bird out of clay and breathed life into it.

verse 116 and 117 Jesus never said to worship him, just to worship God. Now I know he said earlier that followers of the Qur’an and the Jewish Scripture (verse 69) and the Gospel (verse 66) are ok, but what about the John 10:30 parts of the Gospel? The problem with being inclusive and saying that these different revelations from God teach the same thing is that they most certainly do not. I’m unclear how those differences are to be resolved.

God and I have a deal we agreed on long ago. The deal goes like this–whatever Jeff says in front of people, God will make sure the exact opposite of what he says will happen. This morning I said in my message how the Cubs can’t get rid of Sammy Sosa and lo and behold it appears as if they might! I’ve figured out how to manipulate God for my benefit, it’s taken me years to figure it out, but I’ve got it now.

Anything you want done, just let me know and I’ll go before people and say it won’t happen and then it will. Well, I hope they go through with the trade. It appears as though the Baltimore Orioles will pick him up, which is good, East Coast teams need more shlubs. They can have him. At least one more city will see the total futility of the loser. Boy, well, I better stop before I make God have to change His plans.

Every once in awhile a guy can dream, right? I think so. This year, July 29-August 1 is the Hall of Fame weekend in Cooperstown where my boyhood hero Ryne Sandberg will be inducted to the Hall. Boy oh boy would I love to dump my kids off on someone and take off with my wife to Cooperstown for that weekend. That would be pretty cool.

I went to the Hall of Fame when I was in high school and I thought it was one of the neatest things our family ever did on vacation. However, no one seemed to want to dilly-dally there as much as I did. I remember I bought a huge glass mug there and about four months later the bottom of the mug fell off. I’ll be a bit more discriminating as to what I buy if I go again. Maybe I’ll go this summer. Anyone want to watch three charming, always well-behaved children for a few days?

I’m getting back into biking now for the year. I took a few months off and spent time walking and cross-country skiing instead. One of the things I hate about biking is that it’s around cars. Bikers get no respect from cars. Some yahoo honked and yelled at me, something about getting off the road, even though he was nowhere near hitting me, I knew where he was the whole time, and it made no real difference in the overall scheme of things.

I remember last year two dumb kids whipped snowballs at me and it was after a stretch of getting disrespected by people on my bike. I thought in my head “Should I r respond to these kids? Or should I just take it and move on?” I decided I should respond, otherwise they’ll think they can get away with this and kill someone sometime. So I turned around and went back to them and yelled “You trying to start something? Cuz I’m liable to finish it.” They took off running, it was great.

But life is full of these out-of-nowhere tests for your TESTimony. What should I do when someone disrespects me, talks about my mother and puts my life in danger through stupidity? Do I turn the other cheek or teach a lesson? I don’t really know, I just go with the flow, as the Spirit leads, as they say. It’s worked OK so far but there’s always tomorrow.

Speaking of keeping things in perspective, no matter what kinds of problems you are dealing with today, it could be worse. You could be this guy who owns a cattle feed lot and has a 100-ton manure pile that has started on fire and can’t find a way to extinguish the flames! The jokes are just too easy on this one that I’m just going to leave them up to you.

Also, in this article, the man who owns this 100-ton manure pile claims the smoke doesn’t really smell that bad “I guess it’s just all perspective,” he said. “To me, it just smells like smoke. I really don’t know how to describe it.”

It’s all in your perspective.

Yesterday I made some comments regarding the hubbub surrounding dear old Sponge Bob. I do not agree that Christians should speak up about ridiculous going-ons in the world, I think we should focus on us. It seems as if I share this opinion quite frequently about many issues and would like to give my biblical support for this view.

It comes from 1 Corinthians 5:12,13

For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But those who are outside God judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.”

Paul seems to be saying that the Church has enough troubles of its own to take care of, don’t worry about the world, God will handle them. If individuals in the Church are doing their job the way it was explained, there will be fewer in the world anyway, and that’s pretty much our point.

Instead of getting upset that the world sins, we should be taking care of our in-house issues. For instance, if Christian marriage appeared happier, more fulfilling and satisfying, there would be an automatic decrease in pre-marital sex, out of wedlock births, divorce, drunkenness, pornography, child abuse, homosexuality, drug use, etc. Instead, Christians go on having horrible marriages and spend their time focused on gay cartoons. I believe I have the Bible and common sense on my side in this issue.

Update on the Rolling Stone decision to not run the TNIV ad in their magazine. Apparently, they have relented and are going to run the ad in their next issue.

“There has been a groundswell of consumer support, and we’ve had so many calls from potential advertisers that we’ve actually moved the publication date for TNIV up a few weeks. It will now be available Feb. 1.”

In other words, “hey, if we can make money off the Bible and get lots of free press, we’ll do it!”

Alright Christians, ready to be outraged again? Here’s the latest source of our collective outrage: Sponge Bob Squarepants. Apparently good Christians are to be outraged that in a new video teaching tolerance there appear to be homosexual cartoon characters.

“Their inclusion of the reference to ‘sexual identity” within their ‘tolerance pledge’ is not only unnecessary but it crosses a moral line,” Dr James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, said in a statement on Thursday.

Let me just say, I do not condone homosexual characters be they cartoons or real-life, but I also know enough to know that the world doesn’t really mind and this new video will sell more now that Christians have made this, up til now obscure video, popular. Why do we act so shocked that the world glories in sin? Instead of critiquing their sin, why not teach an alternative?

If Christians spent as much time and money teaching marriage as we do ripping homosexuality, our marriages would be better and would attract the world to our view anyway. Not only that, Paul tells us that proper marriage shows the love of Christ for his people. The world knows we don’t agree with homosexuality, what they don’t know, and have rarely seen, is that there’s a viable alternative that can lead to joy and peace in life.

A week or two ago I mentioned that a Muslim guy said the tsunami, that has killed more than 200,000 now, was Allah’s judgment on America and Israel (seems like Allah could have made that message clearer by sending an actual tsunami to America and Israel).

Well, turns out that Muslims aren’t the only ones blaming God. In America, 10% of Catholics blame God and half of Southern evangelicals (read: Southern Baptist legalists) blame God. I don’t blame God, I tend to blame the earthquake that started it and Adam’s sin that caused the earth to do harmful things.

Surah 4 Women Part II

verse 93 “If a man kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell.” There goes that forgiveness part again. Hard to say salvation is by faith if a work can eliminate it. I guess this would qualify it as a religion of peace–as long as everyone is a Muslim anyway.

verse 95 again brings up special reward for those who fight for Allah and have a better position than those who don’t fight.

verse 116 It is repeated throughout that Allah is oft-forgiving and merciful and easily forgives sins but the exceptions come fast and furious. “Allah forgiveth not (The sin of) joining other gods with Him.” Anytime sins are easily forgiven, EXCEPT then you have salvation by works. Anytime you have salvation by works you have insecurity and doubt.

verse 137 says that if you come to the faith and then leave and then come back and leave then Allah will not forgive them. More conditions.

verse 157 Here is the official Muslim teaching on the death and resurrection of Christ–He was never really killed, it just looked like it. “That they said (in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah.;- but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not:”

verse 171 This verse presents a huge problem for anyone saying that the God of the Muslims is the God of Christianity. “Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no more than) an apostle of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His apostles. Say not “Trinity” : desist: it will be better for you: for Allah is one Allah.”

Russia is jumping on board the anti-Semitism bandwagon. Get this, I quote from the article linked to:

“A group of nationalist Russian lawmakers called Monday for a sweeping investigation aimed at outlawing all Jewish organizations and punishing officials who support them, accusing Jews of fomenting ethnic hatred and saying they provoke anti-Semitism.”


“about 20 members of the lower house of parliament, the State Duma, asked Prosecutor General Vladimir Ustinov to investigate their claims and to launch proceedings “on the prohibition in our country of all religious and ethnic Jewish organizations as extremist.”

My favorite argument is that Jews provoke anti-Semitism! No kidding, really? You mean if there weren’t any Jews there wouldn’t be any anti-Semitism? You would think Jews would tire of making people hate them. That’s some logic right there. Get ready folks, get ready.

Here’s another reason to hate school–it could make you blind. New white boards are being installed in schools around the country which are connected to a computer. The light coming off the white board from the projectors could damage retinas.

Of course, we all know what solution these hyper-sensitive people have for the problem–have the government issue safety regulations for all schools on the proper use of white boards. Why in the world should the government be doing that? It would make a lot more sense to have the manufacturer of the white boards do it, if it truly needs to be done anyway.

All of our retinas would be better off if we slept 24 hours a day too, why not have the government issue us beds so we can do so?

Cindy has been wanting to get a membership to the YMCA and I don’t know. I have this thing about paying for exercise. God made us a whole big world for free that we can walk around in and stuff, why pay for it?

So after a light beating, I showed her this article on abc news. It says that vacuuming the house or cleaning the bathroom is equivalent to a light workout at the gym! Saweet! These guys just make my points for me!

Surah 4 Women

verse 3 “Marry women of your choice, Two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one.” Sounds reasonable and pretty much saying to only marry one woman, if you know what I mean.

verse 34 Seems to be using the terms women and property interchangeably throughout. Then we get this wise teaching, “As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (Next), refuse to share their beds, (And last) beat them (lightly);” Boy, maybe these Muslims are on to something here.

verse 43 Just when he gets going on his excellent teaching on women, he goes and changes the subject. He says that before praying Muslims are to wash their whole bodies! What a chore that would be. I wouldn’t have prayed until I was 13, and only once a week at that.

verse 76 “Those who believe fight in the cause of Allah, and those who reject Faith Fight in the cause of Evil.” Again, what exactly does he mean that they are saved by faith? He has all these strings attached to what faith is. In order to be saved, according to this verse, you have to fight for Allah and this isn’t a metaphorical sense either. He mentions being killed so I think he means actual war. How’s that for a religion of peace?

verse 79 “Whatever good, (O man!) happens to thee, is from Allah. But whatever evil happens to thee, is from thy (own) soul.” Total legalism here! How’s that for a religion of hope?

I’ll stop at verse 90. I wish he had expounded more on them women, I can hardly wait for more details. The most depressing day of the year is looking up now!

Today is January 24. Feeling depressed? You might be because according to a British psychologist today is supposed to be the most depressing day of the year. The formula he used to determine this date is

[W + (D-d)] x TQ

M x NA

The reason we’re to be depressed is because by this time we realize how much we spent on Christmas, renewed family tensions, quit our new year’s resolutions and we’re in the midst of cold, dark winter. I don’t know, I’m doing pretty good. I think he should add football to his formula. Or worse, baseball. Cub fans would move that date to somewhere in September.

Johnny Carson passed away today. Another life lived where what he did totally revolutionized the industry. It is inspiring to see people go all out and totally change a whole industry. He’s still being copied today.

As I was saying in the message today, if we would unleash ourselves on our passions, talents and interests and become part of the doers rather than the watchers, we’d become the ones the world would watch. As we’re doing our things in Christ, we would have ample opportunity to share what we know. If we applied our whole heart to everything we did, we’d revolutionize our industries too and what a way to open a conversation!

Most Christians are never asked a question and thus are not ready with an answer because they haven’t heard the questions. The reason there are no questions is because we’re not living in a way which inspires a lot of curiosity. I think we’ve been given liberty from the Lord to go for it, use our stuff and live for eternity and allow that eternal focus to attract others to us. We’re in this together, let’s help each other through!

Surah 3 The Family of ‘Imran: Part II

verse 120-125ish is about people who don’t agree with Islam and what Allah will do to them and the fact that Muslims don’t have to worry about unbelievers doing anything to them because Allah will protect them with his angels.

verse 135 “who can forgive sins except Allah.” Although it mentions Allah forgiving sin, it has yet to address why he can, other than the fact that he can because he’s God. But there is no explanation of sins being forgiven as in a deliverer or a sacrifice, etc.

verse 182 “Allah never harms those who serve Him.” Pretty much the second half of this Surah is about how Allah is in control of everything. If something bad happens to you it’s because you weren’t serving Allah. When you do good; Allah is good to you. This is the typical human view of God. He throws grace in there but in practice grace has nothing to do with Allah’s dealings with people, it is solely works based.

verse 193 “blot out from us our iniquities.” Again there is a plea for Allah to forgive sins with no mention of how he can do that. No mention of blood, sacrifice or payment, just the concept of forgiveness.

verse 195 gives an indication of how you can get your sins forgiven: “Those who have left their homes, or been driven out therefrom, or suffered harm in My Cause, or fought or been slain,- verily, I will blot out from them their iniquities.” This is where you get the idea of Muslims dying for Islam, “for the cause,” and receiving free passage to heaven (the Garden”). This is salvation based on works. So which is it–just asking for forgiveness or having to do this stuff for forgiveness?

Zondervan, owners of the rights to the NIV, attempted to buy an ad in Rolling Stone Magazine. Rolling Stone told them nope, we don’t do ads with religious messages. Of course, Rolling Stone magazine pushes their own brand of religion every issue but we know what they mean. And that’s fine, they’re a corporation with all the freedom in the world to decide who advertises in their pages.

Christians, of course, are to be outraged at this latest example of “persecution.” However, my outrage is more with the fact that the advertisement was promoting the Today’s NIV (TNIV), which has blatant mistranslations of the Scriptures. It’s an attempt at an inclusive translation of scripture, not nearly as threatening or alienating as the original NIV. Basically it pretty much changes God’s mind on a number of issues including the fact that men and women are different.

I, for one, think Rolling Stone made a good call here.

Surah 3: The Family of “Imran

verse 28 “Let not the believers Take for friends or helpers Unbelievers rather than believers.” This verse makes it hard to do much in life with other people. It is interesting that Christianity proclaims love for our enemies and patience towards unbelievers and having a good report among those on the outside. Islam just wants nothing to do with them except, of course, killing them.

verse 37-45 Mary is from the family of ‘Imran who gives birth to Jesus Christ. He mixes together several biblical references in these verses talking about the birth of Christ. Zakariya is Mary’s husband or protector, he goes mute for three days as a sign that Mary will have a son–in the Gospels this sign is referring to the father of John the Baptist–Mary is not called a virgin but a woman who is barren.

verse 59 Jesus was made from dust, good to know.

verse 79-84 I believe he’s saying here that if anyone is faithful to the truth he will not ask people to worship him. When Christ tells people to worship him this must be someone changing the truth in the Book. Verse 84 makes it clear that Jesus is just another prophet, not someone equal with God or worthy of worship.

I’ll stop at verse 100.

Surah 2: The Cow Part II

verse 120 I have found truth in the Koran! “Never will the Jews or the Christians be satisfied with thee unless thou follow their form of religion.: Preach it!

verse 132 Amidst a rambling section about Abraham and his sons is the following statement, “And this was the legacy that Abraham left to his sons, and so did Jacob; “Oh my sons! Allah hath chosen the Faith for you; then die not except in the Faith of Islam.” Followed up with

verse 136 “Say ye: “We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them: And we bow to Allah (in Islam).” When listing the children of Abraham he always throws in Ishmael first. The Bible doesn’t refer to the God of Abraham, Ishmael, etc, the Bible addresses the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

verse 144 gives instructions to pray in the direction of the Mosque.

There is an extensive section of the principles of good Muslim living–fasting, showing charity, praying, keep your contracts, be patient, suffer, observe Ramadhan the month the Qur’an came (verse 185), “Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you (verse 190),” kill those who oppose the faith (verse 191), take the pilgrimage (196-199), give your life for Allah (207), stay away from wine and gambling (219), marry believers (221), be divorced no more than two times (229), fight in the cause of Allah (244),

verse 249-251 he refers to a battle where guys went to drink from a river and only those who drank out of their hands made it, those who drank from the river were left and then David killed Goliath. Wow, skipped a few books there !

verse 256-257 I guess this is the salvation message of Islam, although all those nice things listed above seemed rather necessary to avoid Fire on the Day of Judgment.

verse 272-274 charity is good and you will be repaid in time for your good you do to others.

verse 278 Typical verse instilling Muslims with security in their future “O ye who believe! Fear Allah, and give up what remains of your demand for usury, if ye are indeed believers.” So if you don’t do this you don’t believe, so you’re really not believing in Allah, your doing all this stuff to be good enough for Allah to know you believe.

That wraps up my thoughts on Surah 2, the cow.

From Bush’s inauguration speech:

“That edifice of character is built in families, supported by communities with standards, and sustained in our national life by the truths of Sinai, the Sermon on the Mount, the words of the Koran, and the varied faiths of our people. Americans move forward in every generation by reaffirming all that is good and true that came before – ideals of justice and conduct that are the same yesterday, today, and forever.”

I know he’s a politician being nice, but the ideals of justice and conduct are not the same between those groups of teaching. Even the truths of Sinai don’t agree with the Sermon on the Mount–Sinai says justice is “eye for an eye;” Sermon on the Mount says “turn the other cheek.” The Koran says, “kill whoever disagrees.” That presents a bit of a problem. It just aint that simple.

I am no man’s judge, I’m just saying.

It’s our President’s inauguration today and I thought you’d be interested in an article about the pastor who is going to be doing the prayer. Allow me to quote from the beginning of the article:

“The Rev. Luis Leon’s flock describes him as a liberal thinker who preaches inclusiveness in his sermons, furthers social justice in his work and welcomes same-sex couples in his congregation.” Now, that may not be all bad, it doesn’t say he’s marrying the same-sex couples. His inclusiveness, however, apparently goes to the degree that you really don’t need Jesus. He criticized Christians for over-writing signs that said “God bless America” with “Jesus bless America” after 9/11 by saying, “I was so disappointed that was the reaction of some members of the Christian community,” he said. “We can certainly be a lot broader than that in our inclusiveness.”

Perhaps Bush’s doctrinal belief that Muslims worship the same God is just being consistent with what he’s been taught by his pastor. It’s good for us to know where he’s coming from. Sure wish one of you guys from RBC would become president and have me pray at your inauguration, it would be a prayer America would never forget. Amen.

A Texas “law-maker” wants to make schools record students body mass index on report cards. If kids are “too fat” their parents will be given information telling them how to make their kids less fat.

I find this completely insulting as a parent. As if I wouldn’t know my kid is fat? As if I need someone else to tell me my kid is fat? As if schools were created to tell people what they already know as opposed to teaching them things. Maybe schools are having so many budget crises’ because they’re doing so many other things besides teaching. If you look at the article you see a picture of this Texas “law-maker” and it’s not real surprising to me that 1) the law-maker is a woman (Read: over-protective mother) and 2) she appears to have a body mass index of the prodigal son’s homecoming dinner main course.

I’m getting real tired of people, particularly government people, telling me how to raise my kids. It doesn’t take a village, it takes me and my wife so back off.

Thank you, I feel better now. They’re all just lucky I belong to a religion of peace like my Muslim friends.

From the Koran or Qur’an,

Surah 2: The Cow

verse 29: “Moreover His design comprehended the heavens, for He gave order and perfection to the seven firmaments;” Although Allah is talked about as the Creator, as far as I understand it, the creation was never talked about. Creation is where the Bible starts, the Koran just states that Allah designed it and made stuff. Almost the idea that there was stuff here and he kind of put it together, not that he began the whole thing. Something like that.

verse 34, 35: “And behold, We said to the angels: “Bow down to Adam” and they bowed down. Not so Iblis: he refused and was haughty: He was of those who reject Faith. We said: “O Adam! dwell thou and thy wife in the Garden; and eat of the bountiful things therein as (where and when) ye will; but approach not this tree, or ye run into harm and transgression.” Here is a bit borrowed from Scripture sort of, although God never told angels to bow down to Adam, as man is a little lower than the angels.

verse 40-62ish: Recitation of the history of the people of Israel and their wanderings in the wilderness, although it is Allah who is guiding it and making it sound as if it’s one and the same thing.

verse 62: “Those who believe (in the Qur’an), and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians and the Sabians,- any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.” I guess George W. was right after all, we do worship the same God. Cool.

verse 87: “We gave Moses the Book and followed him up with a succession of apostles; We gave Jesus the son of Mary Clear (Signs) and strengthened him with the holy spirit.” Jesus makes his first appearance. Throughout, Allah is addressed as “we.”

I’ll stop at verse 100 of The Cow for now. The point so far is: listen to the Koran or you’ll be punished for eternity. You should know enough to listen because of all the miracles that happened with the children of Israel.

More important insight from our Muslim Friends. The Christmas Tsunami is being blamed on Jewish and American investments in Bangkok and other areas. These resorts for the rich, which America and Israel are behind, encourage people to fornicate, including Muslims. So Allah, in his mighty wisdom, decided to kill them all and that’ll show them Americans and Jews.

The brilliant mind behind these statements also says that a careful examination of these areas reveals that they were all tourist areas. A not so close examination of the areas hit also reveals that THEY WERE ALL BY LOTS OF WATER. Maybe it was Allah’s judgment on windsurfers, which also explains why John Kerry lost the election. Or maybe it’s judgment on sunbathers for worshipping the sun. Please.

These Muslims better watch out, they’re beginning to sound like Pat Robertson.

OK fine, I’ll take them up on their little challenge and I’ll go ahead and read the Koran and I’ll make notes of it here to share with others the implausible god of said book. Let’s start at the beginning:

Surah 1: The opening

verse 2: Allah is described as the “Cherisher and Sustainer of the worlds.” As pointed out in an unrelated post yesterday, Islam does not claim that God created and this is clearly seen two verses into their book. God merely really likes the world and sustains it, no indication given as to how Someone has enough power to sustain something he didn’t create.

verse 4: Allah is the “Master of the Day of Judgment.” Four verses in and they’re already talking about judgment, I wonder if this is a legalistic religion?

verse 7: Ah, but before we get too carried away into legalism, they bring up grace as well. Wow, even Muslims understand grace.

An interesting piece about religious education in America and Europe. Makes some good points and gives plenty to think about. The first paragraph is pretty good too:

“The sociologist Peter Berger once remarked that if India is the most religious country in the world and Sweden the least, then the United States is a nation of Indians ruled by Swedes.”

Europeans attend church less but know more about religion than Americans. Who’s responsibility is it to teach it? And what about our knowledge of other religions? Do we care? How will we meet needs of others if we don’t know what they believe? Or, is knowing about other religions too dangerous and possibly encouraging one world religion? Interesting questions, don’t know all the answers.

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