Sunday, May 14, 2006

A Brilliant Sermon

My brother, the humble carpenter/philosopher/farmer - whoops, he's not a farmer anymore, preached a brilliant sermon at our church last Sunday. It compares the crucifixion of Jesus with the atrocities at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. It was very original. Although I criticized him afterwards for going on 10 minutes longer than the 15 minutes he had originally allotted, in reading the sermon, it reads well all the way to the end. You can find it here.


Anonymous said...

This is a great sermon! Let's pray that his wisdom spreads to other pulpits.

Have any of your dearly beloved brothers dared to preach on the first verse of the 14th chapter of the Second Book of Kings: "And he said, ‘But my brother Esau is a hairy man, but I am a smooth man.’"?

The text of Alan Bennet's exposition on this verse can be found at:

Anonymous said...

Tell your lovely brother that we believe torture is OK because we believe in a God who can only be satisfied with bloodshed, and who also apparently thinks it is just fine and dandy to have arranged for infinite torture for those who have offended him. So it's a long and glorious tradition that we'll have to learn to do without if we want appeal to theological arguments to oppose torture.

Amishlaw said...

Good point, second anonymous. I'll pass along your comments and see what he says.

Amishlaw said...

My brother, Dannie, responds to the second anonymous's criticism thusly:

"I agree with my anonymous critic, and even said in my sermon that it is difficult to generate an argument against torture from the perspective of the Christian tradition. Since my intended audience was Christian I hung my argument from the slender thread of creation. Readers may have noticed that the purpose of my challenge to the reading of Jesus' torture through the lens of Isaiah was to undermine the idea that God can only be satisfied through bloodshed. That this is heretical from the perspective of Christian orthodoxy was noticed by conservative members of our congregation, which is an unusually intelligent congregation. I appreciate the comment from anonymous. Other comments are welcome."

Dannie Otto

Anonymous said...

A shrewd answer, lovely brother Dannie. Alas, to my eye, your argument is grounded not in creation but in the Imago Dei, which has always been a slippery concept in my book. When we talk Imago Dei, we often conveniently overlook just what a petty and vindictive bastard Yahweh could be. But I don't want to strain Amishlaw's good will here in ferrying words from one of us to the other. So I'll just say "Thanks" for your thought-provoking words.