Saturday, 14 February 2015

Theology, hairdressing and Huns

Is that Paul Holloway's head on the spear? (Art by Ron Embleton)
A much more detailed piece on the gathering of the Huns in N. T. Wright's defence has appeared on Atheist Biblical Criticism, including some really fascinating background to the situation. It's penned by a former evangelical who goes by the wonderful pseudonym veryrarelystable.
Anyone familiar with Wright’s work would know this denunciation to be correct. Wright is a virulent homophobe who used his unjustified privilege in the British parliament's House of Lords to promote his bigoted views. He writes copiously about the New Testament, but always with a slant on trying to prove the NT correct in some way, in order to please biblical-inerrantists and assorted fundamentalists.
(My impression is that, rather than appealing to hard core fundamentalists, Wright's following consists of many thoughtful but compromised evangelicals who are looking for a hero, someone who can provide a much-needed intellectually sound defence of their faith. We all tend to adopt a like-minded scholar or other authority capable of articulating our views more cogently - or with more credibility - than we can. The writer also points out that this sort of evangelical fan-theology has a long track record. When I was in short pants the biggies were F. F. Bruce and - in New Zealand - E. M. Blaiklock. The sad reality is that real scholars tend to be less than charismatic in their writing and speaking skills - with, praise the Lord, some few blessed exceptions.)
Evangelicals have, of course, already infiltrated university theology faculties the world over, adopting a veneer of academic respectability whilst churning out their bible-is-right-as-has-been-predetermined material in ever growing quantities. Non-evangelicals look on in dismay as their discipline is reduced from research into apologetics. 
Ain't that the truth. Such victories may be pyrrhic given the increasing tendency for universities to dump theology from their course offerings. Then there was the intriguing pairing of theology and hairdressing this last week which brought a wry smile to my face. Tough times ahead for Laidlaw College?


  1. "We all tend to adopt a like-minded scholar or other authority capable of articulating our views more cogently - or with more credibility - than we can."

    For me, Gavin, that would be you. Please keep up the good work.

  2. Aw shucks. You can definitely do better!

  3. Hairdressers' program cut? Well....

    Reading through various sources lately and finding the Bible under siege, I'm finding it difficult to see any justification for theology, except, maybe as a way to educate people to the lack of its need.

    A couple of years back, seven programs were axed at the local Technical Votech. Boatbuilding was among them, as was cosmetology. No one seems to have whined much and, thankfully, the Barber college survived the cut -- it's where I get my hair trimmed -- and I am very grateful the program was not.

    You know, in societies such as our own, financial realities abound, and, sadly, many programs which do not contribute to the bottom line must be excised for the good of the economy -- particularly when they have such marginal functionality in producing revenue in the first place.

    Theology just doesn't contribute to the bottom line.

    1. Wow, I'll say it doesn't add to the bottom subtracts from the bottom line if anything and it will definitely subtract from the wage earner's bottom line. Christianity and religion in general...been debunked for a very long just refuses to keep some dignity and leave. Nope, it has to be forced out and humiliated. That's a shame too, considering it may have made some valuable contributions to our survival.