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December 15, 2010


Great! I think I will appreciate some BBC movies more just knowing they're willing to do that. :-)

Do we have any idea what "seclections" will be read? Call me pessemistic, but who knows that they won't focus on violent passages in Judges or other OT books out of context?

I think it's great. And to those who don't like this, change the channel.

It works both ways.

Melinda, do you disagree with secularism?

(definition: Secularism is the concept that government or other entities should exist separately from religion and/or religious beliefs.)

If so, which sect of which religion are you advocating should be the state religion in your country?


I think secularism has taken on a new meaning which is really the perpetuation of anti-religious ideas. Secular should not be a bad thing...but secularization (as a movement) is the movement more and more away from religion. It's one thing for an institution to endorse a religion--it's another thing for it to try and purge it from anything and everything. (FYI, I am not suggesting we are there as a society).

"government or other entities should exist separately from religion and/or religious beliefs."

This definition is incoherent in several ways.

1. "Or other entities" -- The church is one of those other entities. Surely the church does not need to exist separately from religion or religious belief. Does it? Or is the church not an entity? Or is it not an entity other than government?

2. "Government should exist separately from religion or religious belief" -- This is to say that government must exist separately from people, since all people have religion and religious belief. Even if you accept the atheist rationalization that atheists and agnostics have no religion or religious beliefs, are we to conclude that only atheists and agnostics should be part of government?

3. "exist separately from" -- What does this mean? How is it possible for two things that exist to exist separately from one another?

Do we mean that the two occupy different locations in space. If so, then a full blown theocracy, like Iran, is completely secular, since the government offices are not located in the mosques.

Do we mean that the one can exist even if the other is destroyed? Well, religion could surely exist even if government were destroyed, that is, people could still be religious in conditions of anarchy. On the other hand, government cannot exist without religion, since, as already noted, government cannot exist without people, and all people have religion.

Do we mean that the one makes no reference to the other in its defining documents. Well, if so, the First Amendment would seem to violate the notion of secularism rather than upholding it, since it does refer to religion. And the Bible, though it makes no reference to the United States government, has plenty to say about governments generally. The Bible seems to be inherently unseparated from any government or authority. The Bible is, by no means, the only holy book of which this is true.

Or perhaps we mean that all matters of public policy should be conducted without reference to religion? But this is impossible because, again, public policy is impossible without people and all people have religion. Not every matter that applies to them can apply to them without reference to their religion.

"The Bible, and especially the KJV, does have cultural and literary value in understanding allusions in historical literature that has been lost in modern education's banning of anything to do with the Bible." I agree with you for sure, Melinda.
Your point is well illustrated by an incident I recall back in my "singer/songwriter" days about 20 years ago in Ottawa, Canada when I was critiqued/questioned about my use of the phrase "climbed the golden staircase" to poetically refer to physical death (perhaps weak writing but it happened to fit the rhyme and rhythmic flow of the song). The majority of the people in the room were educated in the 70's and 80's and few of them understood the metaphor. By that time in history Bible reading had been outlawed in the public school system
As an aside, I often find in my discussions/debates in online forums that folk who've had the benefit of some Christian "cultural" exposure and Biblical teaching have a better grasp of the use of metaphor/parable than do those folk with a purely secular upbringing. This is often the cause of misunderstanding and miscommunication across the divide IMO.

It's good to hear from you, WisdomLover. :)

We're going to have major conference on the KJV at Baylor next Spring, April 7-9, 2011. Just click my name and read about it.

Confirmed Speakers Include:
Robert Alter (University of California, Berkeley)
David Bebbington (University of Stirling)
Philip Jenkins (Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion)
Laura Knoppers (Penn State University)
Alister E. McGrath (Kings College, London)
Mark Noll (University of Notre Dame)
Lamin Sanneh (Yale University)
N.T. Wright (University of St. Andrews)

Hi Francis, is the KJV promoted in the RCC as a preferred version, or is there even a preference of translations?

Also, since the magisterium was opposed to the laity having exposure directly to the scriptures in a common language in earlier times, was this recieved in its day [1611] as a good thing?

It will be interesting to see what Scriptures they choose. Would the whole thing be too much to expect?

After all, in January the BBC will broadcast the ENTIRE catalog of Mozart's music over 12 days.

Can't you just hear the uproar of Beatle's fans everywhere?

Thanks! Two big surprises tied into the 400th anniversary of the 1611 King James Version Bible:

1. Two scholars and an international team of researchers have compiled the first worldwide census of extant copies of the original first printing of the 1611 King James Version (sometimes referred to as the "He" Bible). For decades, authorities from the British Museum, et al., have estimated that “around 50 copies” of that first printing still exist. The real number is quite different.

2. As well, one of the two scholars has discovered the exact price at which the first KJV Bibles were sold back in 1611. That price has eluded experts for generations. The finding was quite a surprise.

For more information, you're invited to contact Donald L. Brake, Sr., PhD, at or his associate David Sanford at

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