There are many things I have done in my life of which I am ashamed. I am guilty of failing to love my neighbour on numerous occasions. There are many sins for which I seek forgiveness from God and others.
Bad arguments in favour of war (Number One): The hypothetical murderer
The more I read about the history of World War One, the more I understand how we repeat our mistakes. Nearly every war is justified with claims that the situation is unique. Every time, the arguments made in favour of war are depressingly familiar.
If you think UKIP's members are extreme, read its official policies
Nigel Farage has thrown out the latest UKIP member to provoke controversy through bigoted opinions. Farage says he wants to get rid of candidates with "extremist, barmy or nasty" views. But it is not individual candidates who are the problem. UKIP's official policies are extremely nasty, based as they are on an ultra-Thatcherite free-market extremism.
UKIP, homophobia and the real sin behind the floods
UKIP councillor David Silvester believes that Britain’s recent floods are the results of sin. You may be surprised to learn that I agree with him. There the agreement ends, for we have very different ideas about what the sin is and how it has affected the weather.
This morning, I received an email from a polite and friendly public relations manager at the Royal Mint. This follows my petition calling on the Mint to withdraw a £2 commemorative coin featuring Horatio Kitchener and his recruitment slogan “Your country needs you”. Last night, the petition – asking for the coin to be replaced with one that commemorates the millions who died in the first world war – passed 20,000 signatures.
The Royal Mint have revealed the design of a special £2 coin to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the first world war (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25558632). It is described as a “commemorative” coin, but it does not commemorate the millions of people who died. Instead, the coin's design glorifies war and celebrates a leading warmonger.
When I became a Christian, I read daily (or almost daily) Bible reading notes, each exploring a particular Bible passage. They were helpful, at least in terms of assisting me to be disciplined about reading the Bible. They were less helpful in that they frequently jumped around the Bible and often implied that there was only one interpretation of a particular passage (to be fair, some did this more than others). They tended to assume that the reader had a rather straightforward view of biblical authority and they almost never drew any explicit social or political meaning out of the passage in question.