The Mantle of the Prophet


The first book of Kings describes the word of the Lord coming to Elijah at Horeb. The LORD said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus, and when you have arrived, you shall anoint Hazael king over Aram; and Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint king over Israel; and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint as prophet in your place.1 So Elijah went and did what he was told. So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, while he was plowing with twelve pairs of Continue Reading →


This morning (June 11: the feast of St. Barnabas), I was thinking about the story of  Barnabas of Antioch, the Christian apostle and companion of Paul of Tarsus, and how the two of them went around preaching and converting people to Christianity just a handful of years after the events of the crucifixion of Jesus. I thought about the concept of “conversion” and the sorts of proselytizing that continues to go on all around us, a couple of millenia  since then. I’m reminded of the line from the movie, Princess Bride, where Inigo Montoya says, “I do not think that means what you Continue Reading →

Evil, Mean and Wicked, Bad and Nasty

Good and Evil

The problem of evil in the world continues to raise its ugly head wherever and whenever we raise the subject of Faith. It’s important that we put this one to rest early, so here goes. Popular “wisdom” has it that there’s a fierce battle going on out there between good and evil. From that perspective, we wonder what the results will be and who (or what) will win out in the end. It also causes people to question a god who could create such evil and allow it to exist. As is so often the case, if you ask the Continue Reading →

What the Meaning of ‘Is’ Is


“It all depends on what the meaning of ‘is’ is,”1 said President Bill Clinton during testimony for his impeachment hearing. It was a statement that echoed around the world and caused much scorn to be heaped upon him. The statement may be typical of legal hair-splitting, but, in the world of Understanding, that statement is absolutely critical. It does all depend on “what the meaning of ‘is’ is!” The verb ‘to be’ (‘is’) is at the same time both the simplest and most complex concept. It is a verb and so it refers to an action — the action of Continue Reading →