Exporting Crazy: Irish Edition

There’s nothing like watching a bunch of Irish kids at a fundy youth camp run by Bible Baptist Church of Balllincollig sing the praises of the KJV.

Because Ireland just didn’t have enough fighting fundamentalists so we decided to send them some more.

Update 1: A few folks have questioned whether the song above is really a praise of the KJV since the version isn’t explicitly mentioned. I suppose my own bias is somewhat at work here since I’ve never heard this song sung by anybody but KJVO folks and the line “I haven’t changed one word that it said” definitely seems to fit that particular camp.

However, whether or not this song is specifically about the King James, the church in the video is definitely heavily promoting a KJVO point of view.

151 thoughts on “Exporting Crazy: Irish Edition”

  1. I don’t know, but I like the song “This Blessed Old Book.” I didn’t see where this talked solely about the KJV, more on the Bible. Plus the other videos after this one, seem to indicate this camp is not too IFB.

  2. I don’t think this is a KJV song – no version mentioned at all:


    It’s a well of pure water when I’m thirsty and dry,
    And Bread when I’m hungry and worn.
    When the battle is raging, it’s my faithful sword,
    A shelter from life’s troubled storm.
    It’s a light to my pathway and a lamp to my feet,
    When this world gets so dark I can’t see.
    And I’ve not made a change in one word that it says,
    But it sure made a change in me.

    This blessed old book that I hold in my hand,
    It’s true from beginning to end.
    It’s the solid foundation where I firmly stand,
    Sin kept me from it, now it keeps me from sin.

    When I think what it cost just to hold in my hand,
    I’m reminds me that I owe a great debt,
    To all of the martyrs who’d gone to the stake,
    And quote it with their dying breath.
    Now its critics are many, believers are few,
    But one thing I’ve found to be true.
    If you find when you read it that there’s something wrong,
    There’s something wrong with you.

    1. If they were talking about the Scriptures in general, it would be OK. But knowing the beliefs of their church, they are specifically talking about the KJV. Phrases like “And I’ve not made a change in one word that it says, But it sure made a change in me” and “If you find when you read it that there’s something wrong, There’s something wrong with you” mean to them I’m sure not atheists or unbelievers but “compromisers” who use modern translations.

      Interestingly, when they sing these words – “When I think what it cost just to hold in my hand, I’m reminds me that I owe a great debt, To all of the martyrs who’d gone to the stake, And quote it with their dying breath” – most of those martyrs were NOT quoting the KJV.

      1. Hmmm, who would those martyrs be in the Irish context? Cromwell’s victims, perhaps?

    2. Wanna hear something odd? I don’t believe every word of the Bible is correct. I think inspiration of the Bible is more like any other kind of literary inspiration than Holy Spirit dictation. Some parts are great, true to reality. Some parts are perty bad. I’ve listed many of these bad parts out time and again on this blog, so I won’t rehearse them here. People know where they are. Those parts you read and secretly think, What?? Ok, there must be some way to explain this away . . .

      And I admit there is something wrong with me. I have no doubt about that. But I DO prefer the KJV, so where does that leave me? 🙂

      1. That leaves you in a fairly rational place, with a preference for a certain translation, or maybe a certain style of language. Nothing wrong with it.

        I don’t think anyone here harping on the KJVO crowd is necessarily attacking the KJV itself. It’s fine as far as translations go. It was most likely excellent way back in its day. The problem is the exclusionary nature of those who hold to it as if it was handed down directly from God to King James himself, apparently the first English speaker on earth, never to be reconsidered as the language changed. Or people who seem to think Jesus himself spoke in thees and thous.

        And as for “Those parts you read and secretly think, What?? Ok, there must be some way to explain this away . . .” I can relate. I don’t have all the answers, but I can certainly relate.

  3. At long last — some Irish content on this fine blog!

    I shall sleep content tonight.

    1. Are you kidding?
      Do you have any idea how many Irish people are Catholic or otherwise non-Baptist?

    2. Same way you sell the need for missions to Poland or Costa Rica.

      Besides, Catholic countries are a lot safer than, say, Uzbekistan. Or Somalia. Or Iran.

  4. “If you find when you read it that there’s something wrong,
    There’s something wrong with you.”

    If there was something wrong with me when I found that there was something wrong, then was I wrong to have read it, or was I wrong to have been comparing it with something that was not wrong?

    Am I wrong?

    1. You were wrong to have read it without the presupposition that it was right, thus what you were comparing it with could not possibly have been right. Right? Right!

      1. That’s what I’m thinking. I don’t fault anyone for believing every word of the Bible, (fear of transgressing God’s VERY Word is a powerful hermeneutic), but it would be nice if people would at least admit that there is some serious circular reasoning involved.

        Like just yesterday I watched Mike Huckabee explain why he is against The Gays. He said he’s not about getting on the right side of history; he’s about getting on the right side of the Bible. The Bible is agin’ it, and that’s it. But he would be more than ready to change his mind if God would send down an edited copy of the Bible from Heaven with HIS signature on it.

        Uh, Huck, that’s not how the first Bible came to us, so why would you think the edited version would come to us in that way?

        Oh, and to really throw you for a loop–I prefer the KJV. 🙂

        1. That’s exactly what I thought when I heard those comments. Something like Huck doesn’t have a clue about how the whole canonization process worked now, does he, much less who wrote all those books? I don’t think God’s signature was involved.

          (Not that I’m any expert either, but sheesh…)

    2. You may be right. Then again, you may be wrong. Somehow I got dizzy between those two sentences and can’t remember where I was going.

      1. You may be right. I may be crazy. But it just may be a lunatic you’re looking for … Don’t try to save me.

  5. Haven’t the Irish suffered enough? Cromwell, starvation, The long struggle for Independence, partition, The Troubles…Ian Paisley…Bono…and now this.

    (Yes I know some of that has to do with Northern Ireland…and I”m just kidding about Bono. 😉

  6. I like the song; I’m sorry that they are so rabidly KJV – I read the page Darrell linked to in his update, and they claim that the KJV is inspired, and that Moses and the gospel writers translated God’s words instead of being given them by God.

      1. There is a huge difference between those who use and prefer the KJV (a group which some posters here fit into) and those who insist that the KJV is the ONLY true translation of the bible, and all other translations are evil – some even believe that the KJV corrects the original language texts.

        There is nothing wrong with using the KJV. There is nothing wrong with preferring the KJV. When you start insisting that other must use the KJV, you’ve got problems.

        1. I think I’m starting to understand a little. But what is wrong with insisting someone use the KJV? My friend reads from a KJV and she is from China and she is not even a Baptist. -_-‘

        2. My first church went from ‘the King James text is the best’ to ‘anything besides the KJV is corrupted by the devil, even the NKJ.’

          I now read a variety of versions. Some are easier for me to understand than others. Although most don’t sound right to my ear except the KJV.

        3. I am probably a little more than just preference. I don’t believe that the KJV was given by God, but I do think it was translated from the Hebrew/Aramaic/Greek texts that were in common use down the years of the church.

          I do think that the translations made from the modern texts are inherently inferior, because their source is inferior.

          Because the sources are different, I cannot go along with the idea that any version is as good as another.

          Anyway, just explaining what I believe – I don’t want to start a version war here.

          I utterly REJECT what this church teaches about the KJV.

        4. Version wars they are.

          If after reviewing the manuscripts you still determine that the textus receptus is better than the NA-28 apparatus http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novum_Testamentum_Graece then I will respect your opinion.

          The problem is, for the most part, we are dealing with the opinions of my experts versus the opinions of your experts, and claiming that “our” experts are closer to God’s will than your experts.

          I can say, just as easily, that the Textus Receptus is based on inferior manuscripts.

          What are your sources? I just gave you a link to mine.

        5. As one who has studied textual criticism at a pretty serious level (would have been my Master’s thesis if I finished), I get frustrated when I hear people claim that there is anything special, superior, or trustworthy about the texts that the KJV was translated from. That is a falsehood. The facts just don’t match that narrative. What is especially frustrating to me is that this is not arcane knowledge – Daniel Wallace, for example, has written extensively on this (he’s a pretty conservative DTS scholar). The KJV texts were at places incomplete, at other places had some SIGNIFICANT additions, and don’t even correlate well with the majority byzantine texts. And of course, Erasmus only had one or two copies of each book, so he had no reason to suspect textual variation. It is also patently false to claim that the TR was based on commonly used texts or a commonly used text family. The Greek wasn’t used; the Vulgate was. Which probably explains why Erasmus had to cross hundreds of miles to multiple cities just to collect enough books to have most of the New Testament in Greek! (He never did collect all of it; to this day part of Revelation is back translated from Latin to Greek in the TR). This is very basic stuff, folks, so please be careful about espousing a particular position until you take the time to learn the (objective, historical, empirically verifiable) facts.

        6. What’s wrong with insisting someone use the KJV? 1. It’s divisive. 2. It changes the focus from the message of the Bible to the Bible itself. 3. It puts obstacles in the way of people who struggle with reading comprehension. 4. It ignores the actual words of the KJV translators themselves.

        7. Cults need to maintain an ‘us versus them’ mentality. By saying that real christians only read the KJV, they are using fear to keep people in their own churches, no matter how bad or unscriptural things are. There are other techniques used, of course, but this is one of them.

  7. Observations/Ponderables:
    1) Why is the pulpit so far away from the audience?
    2) Some of those Bible-waving kids have less rhythm than I do. And that’s saying something.
    3) My heart goes out to the kids who obviously are not thrilled about being there.
    4) Motto of church from website: “We really believe the Bible, and it shows!”
    5) Pastor’s last name is Ledbetter. I’m not Calvinist, but if your last name is Ledbetter, I think you’re predestined to be IFB or own a honky-tonk or both. (And has anyone else ever heard of Jerry Clower?)
    6) Ledbetter has a new grandchild (Twitter). Congrats!

    1. Back when my children still lived at home, I was in the habit of inflicting old comedy radio shows on them. They didn’t find many of them as funny as I did. Then, on a road trip, I bought a CD of Jerry Clower stories and afflicted them once again. When the CD was finished, a voice from the backseat of the Suburban spoke these words: “Finally, Pop bought something that was funny.”
      A new generation of fans was born.

      1. Nice. I actually got to hear him in person once. Wore a bright red tuxedo from the 70’s. Somehow pulled it off.

        Loved his stories about the Ledbetters:
        Ardel, Burnel, Raynel, W.L., Lanel, Odell, Eudel, Marcel, Claude, Newgene, and Clovis. And of course the parents, Uncle Versie (“The King of Bird Hunting”) and Aunt Pat.

        1. When things are going a bit askew, I often holler out “SHOOT UP AMONGST US! One of has got to have us some relief!”.
          Sometimes the reference is understood. Often at work I hear some comment like, “Hmmm… must be from before my time.”

          I would very mush have liked to see him perform live. He is one of the artists I always wished I could see put on a show at the Ryman Auditorium.

      1. I’m cleaning and puttering in the garage today. I think I’ll find a Jerry Clower station on internet radio. Thanks for the idea.

        1. Thank you. I hadn’t considered that there might actually be a Jerry Clower station.

    2. Dear IFBPK:

      While attending Snob Clones Perversity, I had an Assistant Prayer Captain [i.e., Snob Clones spy] roomie named Ledbetter. He was no Calvinist, believed that there was no such thing as predestination, and was no leader. We called him ‘Bedwetter’ because it suited his personality and level of maturity.

      Christian Socialist

      PS: This is the first time I’ve seen you here. Thank you for making yourself known to us. Welcome to Stuff Fundies Like. Stick around. I’m not sure how he does it, but Darrell continually outdoes himself here, and I for one just love him for it. Blessings!

      1. Thanks, C.S. I’m actually a long-time fan/contributor/patient. Had to change my handle because I was “outed” to some fundy friends and family. Doesn’t bother me much, but I was afraid it would cause harm to those whose livelihood depends on IFB support.

        Darrell has indeed helped me greatly. Still have a ways to go, but I’m recovering one day at a time.

        And C.S., I don’t always agree with you, but I do appreciate your efforts to make newcomers feel welcome. If they keep showing up, it might help them. You kind of remind me of a church greeter. (I mean that in the most positive way possible.)

  8. I feel that I need to separate from these people. They have started down the slippery slope to rock music with those worldly guitars. First acoustic guitars and next it will be electric guitars, then drums! They need to go back to the good old fashioned piano! Haymen?

    1. According to some of the books opposing new Christian music, guitars are phallic symbols designed to look like they are being stroked by moving up and down the fretboard.

      1. Absurd, but not surprising. I once had a family member attempt to dissuade me from taking up the electric guitar because electric guitars “have horns built into them!” and, “People intentionally distort their sound, and that’s unbiblical.” This same person also said I shouldn’t study music theory because, I their words: “You’re a Christian; you should only study music FACT!” Whether this person was fundamentalist, or simply losing touch with reality, I still don’t know.

        1. Look at the French Horn’s bell and the tubing, and think “oral fixation.”

          (They call me “the poor man’s Freud.”)

  9. Guh! I feel so sorry for those kids. I’m so glad that we were able to get our kids out so they don’t have to feel like they wasted half of their life living for the MoG.

  10. Is this bad?, but when I think of Ireland, I immediately think of Guinness. Now I want a Guinness and it’s 8:20 in the morning .

    1. Let me just vent something here…

      So, IFB say beer is wrong, but prior to proper water filtration, people drank mostly beer and wine. Even the beloved forefathers and Puritans.

      The Baptists come and all of a sudden, it gets the title of “strong drink”.

      I personally don’t like the taste of it, but there’s nothing wrong with it.

      So, enjoy your Guinness today!!!

      1. “I personally don’t like the taste of it, but there’s nothing wrong with it.”

        Natalie has just volunteered to be the Official Designated Driver of SFL!

        1. School bus? I don’t think so, not with the level of sophistication we have here. I’m thinking more like a limo. You can even wear a snazzy chauffeur outfit. First class all the way!

        2. I have experience both as a limo driver and a designated driver, if needed. I also have my CDL with passenger endorsement, for “limos” carrying more than 15 people.

  11. Ahhhh my people!!! They sing this song with all the gusto of a rowdy pub song. I’m buying everyone a round of Guinness!!!!! Darrell gets two!!!

  12. Dear IFB,
    I think my people have suffered enough. Now bounce ye bums back across the pond!!!!

  13. How is it idolatrous to love the word of God? Did not Jesus say:

    John 17:17 KJV

    Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

    Afterall, how else do we know about God and his ways and our sinnership and salvation apart from what is written? Anything else is vain speculation is nothing more than walking in the imagination of one’s own heart.

    1. I have a question–when were all of the books of the Bible finally accepted and canonized ? First year of the church ? First decade of the church? First century of the church? The answer might be surprising. What in the world did the church do for all those years without a Bible at all, much less the KJV?

      1. I should have added–it may also be surprising who decided on this canon of Scripture. Those idolatrous Catholic-Orthodox! (One church at that time.) And it may be surprising that they included the so-called Apocryphal books. As did the original 1611 KJV. I love surprises!!

        1. I hope you really do like surprises Nico because in regards to you making the claim that Catholic-Orthodox decided the Canon of Scripture, history simply doesn’t support that. It has been said that men were already quoting the canon of the New Testament who were living in the latter part of the first and the first part of the second century.

          I couldn’t resist. 🙂

        2. Hi A Regular! I think Catholic Gate-Crasher answered well enough, but just to respond–Yes, the individual books existed before the 4th century, and were in use in the churches. But the canon is a different matter. Many books were disputed. Different local churches had different lists of accepted books. Not all churches possessed copies of even the books that were accepted. There was no “Bible” as we know it.

          My point, or at least one point I was trying to make, is that the idea that the 66 books of the Bible (I’ll ignore for a moment that Orthodox and Catholic Bibles are a little thicker!), are the sole and sufficient source of all dogma and morals and knowledge of God does not hold water. Somehow the church seemed to do all right without it for quite a long time.

          However, if you have sources for an undisputed canon of Scripture prior to the 4th century that matches what we now accept as Scripture, I’d enjoy looking into it.

        3. The Biblical canon was not finalized and canonized until the 4th century. Of course people were quoting from parts of it (especially the Gospels and Pauline epistles) long before then. But that’s not the same thing as establishing the canon, including all the books of our present New Testament.

          Eusebius attests that, as late as his day, many bishops had doubts about the divine inspiration of the Apocalypse (Revelation). He died in 339.


        4. @Catholic Gate-Crasher
          It was God alone that decided “canon”. Nobody owes the Catholic organization a debt of anything.

        5. Why is it funny what mr.laser said nico? Don’t you believe that God can preserve his own word?

          “The councils did not legislate the canon so much as set forth what had become self-evident truth and practice within the churches of God.” (Which Came First: The Church or the New Testament?, Fr. James Bernstein, Orthodox churchman, 1994, p 13)

        6. What was funny?

          1. The idea that “God *alone*” “decided canon.”

          As if God gave Athanasius the first canonical list of books (the first one we know of, anyway, but the point is there) and he just copied it out. As if there were no human decisions made, when the early documents are FULL of wrangling and deciding and arguing over the inclusion/exclusion of some of these books.

          An interesting and, I think pertinent point: At the very first church council, deciding what to do about Gentile converts, the elders said, “It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, *and to us* . . .” This synergistic operation is pretty much the way God works with humanity, don’t you think? Which, yes, opens the door to mistakes, errors, bad decision, etc., but that’s what you get with free moral agents.

          2. The idea that no one “owes the Catholic organization a debt of anything.”

          (The name “Catholic” is anachronistic, but we’re talking here about the (more or less) united Christian churches. There are plenty of sources for all this if you care to research. I bought my 38 volume set of the Early Church Fathers for less than $200 from CBD–this was 12-15 yrs. ago, but I think they still are a decent price. )

          So, no debt owed. Except that, as the sources show, it was Catholics who decided among the circulating books which ones were canonical and not. And it was Catholics who hammered out what to think about, for example, the 2 Natures of Christ and the Trinity, foundational (fundamental?) dogmas accepted by pretty much all Christians (leaving aside for the moment the non-Chalcedonians, no disrespect to them intended). These things had to be argued out, debated, discussed, because the Bible is not all that clear on them without interpretation.

          It seemed as if Mr. Laser was saying that God not only gave his infallible VERY Word direct from heaven without mediation, but he also sent down an infallible interpretation of that Word without mediation so we would never go astray. I do find that funny.

          3. And now, here’s something else funny.

          The fact that Fr. James’ statement proves my point, though it seems you are quoting him to contradict my point. I don’t know Fr. James personally, but I know his writings pretty well. I have this work you quote. (You wouldn’t believe the amount of reading I did on the Orthodox Church and church history in general before I converted in 2000. I should have taken up golf or something! 🙂 )Even though at the moment I am at odds with some of the social positions of the Orthodox Church, it’s quite difficult to argue with the sources that clearly show: That the canon developed slowly over time. That the church came before the canon of the New Testament. That the early united Christian Church met in council on occasion and decided many important things for which even Protestants/nondenoms are indebted to them.

          Yes, not all was holy and good in the Catholic and Orthodox churches over time. Church history is a bloody, nasty business, not for the faint of heart. But there it is.

      2. Interesting question nico. For that matter, what did the early Christian believers do before the book of Revelation? Also what did the Jews do during the 400 years of silence before the New Testament? God only knows.

        1. what did the early Christian believers do before the book of Revelation

          They relied on the Church, “the pillar and ground of the truth.”

          They also read the Gospels, which were widely accepted quite early on.

          Even after Revelation was written, it was not immediately accepted as Scripture. The present Scriptural Canon was not established until the Councils of Carthage and Hippo in the 4th century.

          Also what did the Jews do during the 400 years of silence

          Read I and II Machabees, maybe? 😉

        2. Leave it to the token SFL Catholic to know more about the development of the canon of Scripture than fundies. 🙂

        3. For all of the fundy/fundy-like appeals to “We’re going back to the Early Church,” there sure is an insistence on having a leather-bound VERY Word of God resting in their laps at every service–something that, in spite of our ignorance of exactly what went on in those early days, we can be quite sure the early church never had.

          And to answer my first question–the first lists we have that includes all of the books we accept today as Scripture are from the late 4th century.The historic creeds existed decades before the canon of Scripture. It really is a fascinating subject.

        4. Oops, just saw Nico’s leading questions. Sorry for stealing your thunder, Nico. LOL.

          I once heard David Jeremiah (on the radio) assert that you can tell that a church is Bible-believing if you see its members carry Bibles as they enter it. (Conversely, no Ninle-toting members = not a Bible-believing church.)

          By that criterion, the apostles did not qualify as Bible Believers.

          Of course, liturgical churches read TONS of Scripture during every service — OT, psalms, NT lesson, Gospel — but that does not count because the members do not tote their KJV Bibles into the church building.

        5. Yes–and also interesting is that one criterion for inclusion in the canon was whether or not a given book was used liturgically. (The Apocalypse was an unusual case. The Orthodox include it in the canon but still do not read it in services.)

        6. no Ninle-toting members

          Ack, George!!! How did “Bible” become “Ninle”?


    2. “thy word is truth”

      Um, well, “word” in the Bible does not always mean “written word.” In fact, unless it specifically says written word, chances are good it doesn’t mean “written word.”


      In the beginning was the Word….

      1. So you are saying that Jesus wasn’t talking about the written word in that verse then? It sounds to me you are unsure because of the way you answered. 😉

        1. I disagree Natalie: If Christ is talking about himself, why did he say these things a few verses earlier?

          John 17:6

          I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

          John 17:8

          For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.

          John 17:14

          I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

          But hey if I disagree I’m relegated to being grouped with “fundies” right?

        2. I’m not quite sure what you mean Natalie. Maybe you don’t understand, I don’t know if you noticed but when the word refers to Jesus it is capitalized. Here are some examples:

          John 1:1

          In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

          1 John 1:1

          That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;

          1 John 5:7

          For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

        3. Okay, in your first comment, you alluded that John 1:1 was referring to the written word, as in the Bible.

          But, John 1’s “Word” refers to Jesus. It’s from the Greek word, “Logos” which means “Essence”, but the consensus is that it’s referring to Jesus, especially in light of verse 14.

          Now, we might be saying the same thing, but from your comments, it appears that you were saying that John 1:1 was referencing the actual Bible (i. e. written word).

          I hope that makes sense. 🙂

        4. I never alluded to anything. You have confused me with Catholic gate crasher. 🙂

          Revelation 19:13 KJV

          And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

        5. There are no “capitalized” words in the Greek New Testament. Unless you refer to the ones with all caps, but then you have exactly the same problem. The caps in any English New Testament are provided by the translators. They usually fit the context, but sometimes they don’t. The NKJV is particularly bad about this.

        6. What about the orally transmitted Word? That’s how the Apostles experienced Our Lord’s word. They heard it from His own lips.

          That’s also how the apostles’ first followers received the Gospel. They heard it.

          “Faith comes by hearing….”

      2. @Catholicgatecrasher

        Why would you take issue with what Qube said? God’s word is true.

        Psalms 119:160 KJV
        Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

        Remind me again where God’s word is?

        For the record, the Catholic organization didn’t give us the Bible. The Catholic organization actively hunted down and killed anyone that tried to translate the words of God into the common man’s tongue. Did you ever hear what the Catholic organization did to John Wycliffe’s bones because they hated him so much or about the Jesuits of Loyola?

        A good documentary on this subject is “A Lamp in the Dark: The Untold History of the Bible.”

        1. elfdream did you even read what I typed? Anyway, I don’t consider wikipedia to be a credible source of information because it can by modified by people easily and last I checked, colleges (i’m not talking about fundy colleges) wont allow you to use it as a citation.

          Furthermore the part you referenced strangely did not cite its source. But I will humor you: even if they did do some translations, that still doesn’t mean they gave us the Bible.

  14. My post didn’t show. Catholic gate crasher, both you and Nico are incorrect about Canon of Scripture. There is evidence that men living in the latter part of the first and the first part of the second century freely quoted the the Canon of the New Testament way before any Catholic council.

        1. Yeah, the Early Fathers are full of quotations from the N. T. And there was talk of a canon. But no one had defined a list of canonical books that matched the 66 in (Protestant) Bibles. In fact, unless my memory tricks me, the heretic Marcion had the first list of canonical books, which was one of the spurs to define an orthodox canon over against the heretical canon. I have yet to read a reputable scholar that believes otherwise–Orthodox, Catholic, Protestant, you name it. It’s just that different scholars put a different emphasis on the facts, depending on their viewpoint.

          Various books were in circulation. Some of them were universally recognized as Scripture. Some of them weren’t. Some books that were later rejected were included as apostolic. These things weren’t finalized until the 4th century.

          Also interesting is that though the canon has been considered closed for centuries, Luther entertained serious doubts about some of the N. T. books. (Pretty sure you know this already, just making the point.) He famously called James an “epistle of straw” because it didn’t fit with his theology.

          At any rate, knowing that the canon developed slowly over time does not mean one has to have a low view of Scripture. It *does* mean, to me at least, that the fetishism of the Bible such as we see in the video above seems incredibly silly.

  15. I found this site a while ago when staying in Cork, though didn’t visit the church. If you have a look at the page on the site called What’s Different in Ireland it says a lot about the missionary attitude. Summary – the Irish are quite hygienic really in spite of leaving bread out in shops and having animal carcasses in their butchers premises.

  16. Back to the (mostly) original question – yes, I have visited with church support missionaries to Ireland. The KJV is NOT widely promoted as the only acceptable translation for a number of reasons, but yeah, being authorized by an English king is one big problem. As far as criticism of missions to Ireland, be aware that there are non-Christian immigrants to Ireland, and native born Irish who, just like here, are on the church rolls someplace yet have absolutely no interest in attending that local fellowship. Not a lot of true sheep stealing from what I understand.

      1. Probably not, but on the other hand, I don’t think love knows national boundaries. This is the problem I have with the whole “missionary” thing. It just breaks down unless we are talking about middle class, white Americans going to some island somewhere to get eaten by cannibals. At the end of the day, I hope all Christians are following in the commands of Jesus, and are obeying the two great commandments and exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit. If they do that in Dublin or Poughkeepsie, I don’t care. But if I had the choice, I’d be in Dublin too 😀

        1. This is the problem with foreign missions (and domestic missions to minorities, such as Native Americans) as we usually think of them: Missions, especially as they were usually done in the 19th and 20th centuries, assume an unequal power relationship between the missionaries and the people they proselytize. The historic link between missions and imperialism is not accidental; it is organic and possibly inextricable. Conversions aren’t 100% free-will, and churches don’t really reflect those of the New Testament, as long as the missionaries are tied to organizations and countries that are far more powerful (and richer) than any indigenous institutions or social relationships. We’ve recently mentioned this imbalance in the history of missions in places like Alaska, the Pacific islands, and Africa. To some exist it also is present when North Americans operate missions in Eastern Europe and Latin America.
          What an alternative would look like would be an interesting conversation topic. There are a few missionaries who go, as most seem to have done in the first century, to other countries with no financial support from home and no recourse to the embassies or consulates or other trappings of their home countries. Their relationship to the local people is altogether different from those who have funding, supplies, and diplomatic and military protection from abroad.

        2. If you haven’t already come across it, ‘Christianity Rediscovered’ by Vincent Donovan is a very interesting account of one person’s attempt to reach people, the Masai, without the baggage of his churches institutions.

  17. Just flew back into Alaska today from my vacation in warm, sunny Sedona. Good to read the thread here and to know that my SFL friends are all ok. Blessings to you all.

    I’m part Irish so I may have to look for a Guiness in honor of you all.

    1. Glad you’re back safe and sound–say, you didn’t happen to visit a vortex and return with answers to all our questions, did you?

      1. I visited several vortexes. In fact, I climbed Bell Rock, which is supposed to be a very strong ‘feminine’ vortex. I think I got in touch with my feminine side, but since then I can’t stop touching it.

        1. Well, I guess this new-found knowledge of how to touch yourself with pleasure is almost as good as having the answers to all of life’s problems. Beware, though. I’ve heard that pleasure-touching causes acne.

  18. Let’s support the occupation by sending Bibles in which the copyright is held by an imperialist, foreign power.

  19. Nico…I meant to applaud your masterful comments re the Canon. And yes, I agree…Father James proves your point!

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