I’m a Scripture, Tradition and Reason kind of Christian, pretty moderate in about everything and maybe a bit cynical about some things, however nothing warms my heart more than a good old fashioned book burning. There is something about this tradition that makes for good fellowship on a crisp fall night. Everyone is gathered round the fire and the grand master of the congregation, sometimes referred as the “Pastor” or in some cases “Preacher Boy” exhorts his otherwise illiterate congregation to burn books which they have never read and for which in many cases cannot pronounce the author’s name, much less know anything about the books being burned.
The cool thing for the folks doing this at Amazing Grace Baptist Church in Canton North Carolina near Ashville is that they not only are burning “heretical” books, but Bibles too, I think over 10 different translations to boot…now that really adds “fuel to the fire” if you ask me. The “Pastor” of the 14 member congregation a Marc Grizzard who seemingly appropriately is wearing bib overalls in his interview with a local television station, which coincidently is of the Devil too. That link is here and they have a nice little video too: http://www.kbmt12.com/news/local/63968712.html
The church has a pretty good list of Bibles and authors and even musicians, of course everyone knows that musicians are all Satanists so why shouldn’t they get their stuff burned too? Some of the Bible translations which are called by Grand Master Marc “Satan’s Bibles” include the New International Version. Now I admit I’ve never been a fan of what I consider a pretty bland and unexciting translation, but can’t see burning them. Likewise the New American Standard Bible, the Good News for Modern Man and a bunch of others make the list. I’m sure that my two preferred translations have to be in the mix somewhere, the Revised Standard Version and the New Revised Standard Version. Since these too have to be the Devil’s handiwork I will guard them with my life just in case Grand Master Marc comes up my way at 666 Lake of Fire Way.
Burning books is one thing, I would actually start with most Christian fiction, especially the Left Buttocks series if I were to start burning books, but even then I figure that maybe the Deity Herself would not approve. Of course the Grand Master Marc being a good Scripture only kind of guy, screw that demonic tradition reason too, does find scriptural precedent for this in Acts 19: 18-20 which I quote from one of Satan’s Bibles, the New Living Translation or the NLT:
“Many who became believers confessed their sinful practices. A number of them who had been practicing sorcery brought their incantation books and burned them at a public bonfire. The value of the books was several million dollars. So the message about the Lord spread…”
Of course the passage in questions refers to recent converts who had been into sorcery in a place where this was big business and not to Bible translations, or works of popular Christian writers of their day such as Peter, Paul and Mary…wait sorry, Peter, Paul and John my bad. Likewise the “Amazing Grace” church has identified a number of heretical authors whose works will be burned including such known betrayers of the faith as the Pope, Mother Teresa, Billy Graham and Rick Warren. Now I wouldn’t read Rick Warren if you paid me too, well maybe I’d prostitute myself if the money was right, but still I can’t recommend burning his books. I like the way that Billy Graham preached but was bored by his books, but still burning? I don’t know…and Mother Teresa’s books are too small to be more than kindling. As to burning the Pope’s books, which Pope, all of the Popes with a number after their name, or maybe those with a Latin or Italian name? Nope, must be all of them. Add to the mix others such as conservative stalwart James Dobson, award winning Chuck Colson, John, “no I’m not having fun” MacArthur and a host of others you get a pretty good pile of books to burn.
The church website: http://amazinggracebaptistchurchkjv.com/Download99.html is hard to reach right now because it has exceeded its bandwidth however they plan a good time including serving food for those who attend. Since there is food can I make Smores?
The interesting thing about the good folks at Amazing Grace Baptist Church which I think is a pretty uninspired name for a church which is to say the least a bit intolerant and has been used in a really popular song that I heard Willie Nelson sing is that the are KJOVers . In English that means King James Only Version people. For them there is no other version in English that is the true, inspired, inerrant Bible, the King James Version 1611, or 1611 for short. I knew a Army National Guard Chaplain in Texas who once visited one of his church “shut-ins” at her home. He asked her if she would like him to read something out of the Bible to her. She told him that only if he would read from the original language. He was dumbfounded, he didn’t have his Greek New Testament available nor anything in Hebrew, so he said that he didn’t have it with him. The lady said “Oh I have it in my drawer.” She reached to her bedside nightstand and pulled out; you guessed it the KJV 1611.
Now I have nothing against the KJV, I even have one or two in my collection. However it is not my language, I’m an American of the late 20th and early 21st Century. All the doests, don’tist, thousist and shallists really killeth me. Even in the liturgy I’m a 1979 Book of Common Prayer Rite Two kind of guy. Rite One is a lot like the KJV and while nice I find myself stumbling all over it like I was trying to celebrate the Mass in Urdu or Pashto. It just doesn’t work for me. If that makes me a heretic or worse I’m sorry.
However there is something I find perplexing about the KJOV crowd. The King James Bible as it was originally published in 1611was a little different than that called the 1611 today. First, it was translated by a bunch of Anglican scholars from the Greek and Hebrew assisted by the Latin Vulgate and Luther’s German translation. Second, it included the books commonly referred to as the Deuterocanonicals, sometimes known as the Apocrypha. Third the King James Version was “Authorized” not necessarily by God, but rather the Good King James of England, defender of the Faith who happened to believe that the “Faith” was that prescribed by the Church of England, not Catholics, nor Puritans and especially not Baptists was the faith to defend. In fact the Good King James despised the forefathers and foremothers of the Grand Master Marc and the stalwart Amazing Grace Baptist Church persecuting them, jailing them and even executing them. Of course the Defender of the Faith happened to be a flaming homosexual, not that there’s anything wrong with that. Somehow I wonder why they wouldn’t pick a Bible that was more Baptist friendly. Oh well, I love irony but will take my shirts to the cleaners.
Moving on to Africa where some rather extremist type Christians are trying to go back to the times of the Round Table up to the 1600s in England and Her Colonies in the “New World” aka Virginia and the Massachusetts Bay Colony by deciding children are witches and deciding the exorcise them. I said “exorcise” and not “exercise.” Unfortunately these folks have updated the exorcism manuals to include forcing acid down their throats. The story is heart rending:
The nine-year-old boy lay on a bloodstained hospital sheet crawling with ants, staring blindly at the wall.
His family pastor had accused him of being a witch, and his father then tried to force acid down his throat as an exorcism. It spilled as he struggled, burning away his face and eyes. The emaciated boy barely had strength left to whisper the name of the church that had denounced him – Mount Zion Lighthouse.
A month later, he died.
Nwanaokwo Edet was one of an increasing number of children in Africa accused of witchcraft by pastors and then tortured or killed, often by family members. Pastors were involved in half of 200 cases of “witch children” reviewed by the AP, and 13 churches were named in the case files.
Some of the churches involved are renegade local branches of international franchises. Their parishioners take literally the Biblical exhortation, “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/wire/sns-ap-af-nigeria-child-witches,0,5276725.story
There is little humor in this story, it is tragic. The fact that anyone anywhere would abuse and kill children in such a manner is abhorrent and unfortunately happens far too often. I live about a mile from “Witchduck” road in Virginia Beach Virginia. If you have seen Monty Python and the Holy Grail you will understand what I am talking about. I think that if anyone is going to accuse someone of witchcraft they should be tried by the ancient tradition of the witch ducking. I will not go as far as some to deny incidents of demonic possession but think that we need to be careful when we deal with the subject.
And lastly, is it wrong of me to think ill of the Virginia Department of Transportation, better known as VDOT? I have a number of beefs with the kind folks who manage our Interstate and State Highways. In the nearly 6 years that I have lived here I have had to replace two windshields and 8 tires due to debris that has littered I-64 and I-264 in the Hampton Roads area. Tonight as I pulled tire number eight off of my trusty 2001 Honda CR-V this afternoon to find a piece of metal imbedded in it I muttered a few epitaphs concerning the agency of ill-repute and leadership of questionable parentage and oedipal tendencies. I am tempted to send Governor Tim “Eyebrows” Kaine a bill for the money that I have had to spend to buy windshields or tires.
Tomorrow I have duty and the Abbess will take my tire back to the place that I bought it to see if it is still salvageable or if I need to get a new one with a bit of credit on my road hazard warranty.