Category Archives: Fun

15 Things Jesus Didn’t Say, by Jim Palmer

Here’s a few things you might hear in church this week, but shouldn’t. Mainly because Jesus never said them.

I picked this up from my good friend, John Benn, a pastor in Durban. It was originally written by Jim Palmer, an author and part of the Religion-Free Bible Project.

15 things Jesus Didn’t Say:

“For God was so disgusted with the world and you that he gave his one and only Son.”

“I have come to bring you a new religion.”

“By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have correct theology.”

“If anyone would come after me, let him disparage all other religions and their followers.”

“If you love me, you will regularly attend a church of your choice… within reason.”

“Blessed are the tithers for they shall be called the children of God.”

“Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in Heaven after the earth goes up in flames and destroyed.”

“You have heard it said, ‘Love your neighbor,’ which means the people with whom you attend church and relate to in your Christian sub-culture.”

Continue reading 15 Things Jesus Didn’t Say, by Jim Palmer

God versus the weather

Here’s something you conservative Christians should be teaching at church: stop watching the Weather Channel.

The Bible makes it abundantly clear that God is in control of the weather. God causes rain and drought (see Deut. 11:14-17; 1 Kings 8:35-36; Job 5:10; 37:6; Jer. 14:22; Amos 4:7 and Zech. 14:17 – there are many more examples). God controls the “storehouses” of rain, snow and even the lightning (see Deut. 28:12, 24; Ps. 42:7, 135:7; and Jer. 10:13). It is God who sends storms (see Jonah 1:4), sometimes to punish people (Job 37:13). And, of course, Jesus stopped a storm dead in its tracks (see Mark 4:37-41; also see Ps. 107:29).

So, why are conservative Christians comfortable watching the weather channel, which so clearly uses science to show weather systems and patterns and make predictions based on a Godless scientific view? And why are they comfortable with their children learning about the water cycle in school? This scientific vision of the world’s weather patterns presents a picture of a world in which there is no need for God or God’s agency – the weather just works because it is a complete, integrated system on its own.

Now, obviously, I am being deliberately facetious in asking these questions in this way. Most thinking Christians can quite easily accept that the weather works all on its own, without any miraculous intervention from the Creator (To be fair in my reporting, I must say that some don’t and claim that God does indeed control every weather event – see here for Donald de Young’s book, “Weather and the Bible”). And while they certainly believe that God is capable of intervening in any part of this world, thinking Christians don’t see God’s hand in every storm or lightning bolt or hurricane (or quiet sunset or peaceful afternoon breeze, for that matter). The weather just gets on with it, all on its own.

And we therefore understand the verses I quoted above as being clearly figurative, rather than literal (except, possibly, Jesus’ miracle).

So, why then, are some conservative Christians so uptight about evolution? And why can’t they apply the same logic and hermeneutical approach to the Biblical accounts of Creation as they do to God and the weather?

Yes, this blog post is really about evolution and not about the weather. But it struck me today to be a good analogy. Why aren’t more Creationist Christians uptight about the weather, how it’s presented on TV or taught to their children at school? I’m just interested, that’s all…

Old Testament instructions (and how to apply them selectively)

This is just for fun. Sort of.

I was sent this information by a friend of mine recently. It is laugh out loud funny – at least it was for me. Yet, the underlying issue (of how we interpret the Bible) is serious indeed. But read other entries on this blog for more cerebral engagements with the issue.

A few years ago, an American radio host ranted about homosexuality (and then later retracted her comments and took out full page newspaper adverts to apologise). Dr Laura Schlessinger (“Dr Laura”) broadcasts a 3 hour long, radio program each weekday on a network of over 500 radio stations in the U.S. and Canada and has an estimated audience of 20 million people. She holds a Ph.D. in physiology (not psychology).

In her radio show, Dr Laura had said that, as an observant Orthodox Jew, homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus 18:22, and cannot be condoned under any circumstance (she said more too about her feelings about homosexuals). The following response was posted on the internet. Its source has been credited to many different people, and is best regarded as an essay clearly meant for a wider audience than just Dr Laura. It is a reminder that many belief systems pick and choose their way through Biblical teachings in determining what is “right” and “wrong”. Authorship remains unconfirmed.

Dear Dr. Laura:

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination… End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God’s Laws and how to follow them:

Continue reading Old Testament instructions (and how to apply them selectively)

Great moments in history expressed as Facebook status updates

Just for fun.

My middle daughter, Hannah, is a real history buff (she wants to be an archeologist when she grows up). It helps to have a near perfect memory, so all the dates and names places easily lodge in her mind. But it also helps to have history made fresh, fun and interesting. This started with the “Horrible Histories” series (see the books and videos at – a kind of Monty Python show of historical facts. It’s genius.

And now, I’ve found something else that looks astoundingly brilliant in concept. It’s the history of the world as told through Facebook status updates. This is so clever. I’ve ordered the book (you can do so too at or or your favourite bookstore), and have seen some excerpts online. It’s a pity, I think, that the author seems to have a penchant for foul language, but if you can look beyond that, there is some genius at work here.

My favourite so far is the interactions of the church with some key historical figures. Like these, for example:

Continue reading Great moments in history expressed as Facebook status updates

How Youthworkers are seen – and see themselves

Just for fun this weekend…

I met with a few people from the Portsmouth Diocese yesterday (we are working together on a project to put my “Mind the Gap” generations work into a DVD programme). Ben Mizen (Youth and Children’s Work Adviser for the Diocese of Portsmouth) alerted me to a video that was put together recently for a Youth workers conference here in the UK.

If you are – or ever have been – in youth ministry, you’ll find it laugh out loud funny. It’s true, and funny, and a bit sad all at the same time. Enjoy. And share with the youth workers you know:

YouTube link if you can’t see the video above.

April Fools Jokes (for Christians)

Yes, it’s true. Christians do in fact have a sense of humour (some more than others, of course). The best laugh of the year for me so far was Rachel Held Evans’ (my favourite Christian blogger at the moment) post this past Sunday in which she parodied a number of well known Christian writers. Pure genius.

Read it here.

Thanks, Rachel, for a great laugh. With a slightly serious message, if you spot the ironies.