Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Bibles for Sale

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

I’m all worked up about an online argument with Michael Main about Rolling Stone and hip youth oriented bibles. The truth of the matter is that I’m continually tempted to buy one of those youth oriented bibles. I want to look at the passages and see how they explain away the misogyny and hatred. I secretly hope that they will have just the right words to make Christianity sensible in my mind.

Sure, Jesus’ message was sensible. Love thy neighbor. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. Give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. I just haven’t noticed a lot of Christians following those noble thoughts. Even the characters in the Bible have a hard time being nice and withholding judgment. How could that be explained in a youth oriented bible?

The problem is that the Christians that are quietly following the words of Christ are ignored while the judgmental Jesus freaks are shouting out their hatred. The best ministry is quietly following your beliefs and allowing others to notice how smoothly your life flows. It doesn’t come in flashy two page spreads in Rolling Stone magazine. I immediately equate hypocrisy with advertisement, so when Rolling Stone rejected the ad, it sounded completely logical to me. The idea of refusing to buy the magazine because they rejected the ad never occurred to me.

It made Michael Main angry and he blames their rejection on bigotry. He thinks they made a mistake to base their rejection of the ad on a religious stereotype. The article doesn’t even mention the word “God,” yet they rejected it. He thinks they should just come right out and admit that they did something wrong. His response took me totally by surprise. I am looking at the ad right now. Why would they want to put an ad in Rolling Stone? They want to sell bibles. It has nothing to do with Jesus or the Word of God. They want to sell bibles. That’s what any company wants to do: sell their product. I guess as a capitalist, I should be angry with Rolling Stone for rejecting their ad. Of course, as an American, I also believe that they have the right to reject whatever ad they want.

I don’t even freakin’ like Rolling Stone. I wouldn’t have bought their stupid magazine anyway. The bible on the other hand… Man, you can’t buy publicity like that. I didn’t even know that particular bible existed before this whole thing happened. Now, I’m thinking about checking out that bible. Zondervan Publishing should thank Rolling Stone for rejecting them. They got an article in USA Today because of them. I guess everything works out in the end. Zondervan gets lots of publicity without even having to pay for it.



  1. Okay, first off I wouldn’t say we ‘argued’…we discussed our opinions like civil human beings. And I enjoyed it!

    I would mention that Rolling Stone got a lot of free publicity too.

    If I have time today (the house is still a wreck and I’m already proscratinating but I promised I would find at least two of dogs amid the chaos of the bedroom – that’s a joke) I want to write about exactly the type of Christians that set you off… they set me off today too…and one of them many years ago led the most Christ-like man I know to choose family over career resulting in 3 true and honest Christian young people now building families of their own.

    I enjoyed our on going banter via comments….Hell, at least it gave me a chance to sit down instead of carry furniture :)

    I got too old for Rolling Stone long ago and my Bible translation holds the wisdom I seek…it was learning to study it properly, understanding the context of some of the brutality, mysogyny, and hatred in the stories told that is indeed difficult.

    I will mention though that being judgmental can be a two way street…it’s not reserved just for Christians :)

    Please never hesitate to take issue with anything I write (although I sort of get the impression that you’re not exactly a wall flower) I believe the only way to understand the Bible, and find the path toward an honest faith is via community…a community that excepts that others have differing viewpoints.



    Comment by Michael Main — 1/20/2005 @ 1:36 pm

  2. Laura,

    Hi again. I wrote to you yesterday and was very pleased that my little message in this cyber bottle came back to me with your words to me. Thank you. I read your blog today and I thought of the following letter I wrote to my niece a while ago. I thought that you and whoever might enjoy reading my thoughts on this huge question that we all seem to wonder about. Thank you for the opportunity to share my thoughts. I also wrote back to you yesterday on your blog about your musing about being a writer. I too ‘are’ one. Always be happy and be safe. Thanks again– Clifford

    Dear Crysti,

       I received your letter today and was very pleased to hear all you had to say and offer. It is strange how life is. We look for truth and meaning in most things we do, and most often then not we fail to find any. But when we do look, and when we do find truth and meaning, even in part, we celebrate somehow, and cannot help but feel a sense of elation and an odd sort of momentary self-fulfillment, that we have understood just a little bit better, how this great big universe rolls around about us. The rub, however, (and there always is one.) is what do we do with our little epiphany. 
      Do we take it to a downtown corner and yell and shout that we have a cosmic cog to the universal puzzle. (But no one really listens.) Do we take it to work perhaps, to let those we work with look at it and consider it and then pass their opinions on to it? (But, this always makes us uncomfortable.) Or, we will take it to a dear friend who will certainly receive it and understand it as we did. (But then they don’t.) So, what do we do with our little epiphany? 
     I don’t know…!
     We can ask Clifford the Christian, or Jason the Jew, or Crysti, the agnostic what Truth is, and will discover a very interesting thing in all their answers—that they are all the same. There are no differences in things that are True. And, everything will be answered for them all, and as long as their search for Truth is open minded and sincere and without pride or prejudice, they all will find what one of my characters in my book finds, that-- Truth is Truth where ever you find it. It does not matter if Buddha or Jesus or Abraham says it. If it is Truth, it will be true for all and in all times and ages. (Even, if Mickey Mouse says it.)  
     The quest for Truth is hard and demanding. It is not for the weak willed or for the lazy or for the fearful. One must listen carefully to what these men do say, so you can know, with all certainty, what they do not. For I believe that God has taught us more Truth in what he does not say, then all the thousand million things we suppose, he did say. 
     When Jesus stood before Pontius Pilot, moments before he was sent to his sentence, the Roman governor knowing that he was finally standing face to face with the man that he had only heard reports about for the last three years, the man who he had heard such strange magical things about, this good and wise man, the man that some even had called a god, Pilot, understanding who this man was, finally asked Jesus THE question—“What is Truth?” And, it is what he does not say, that, for me, begins as my first piece of “evidence” that Jesus is the Son of God. For, I believe, if he had tried to answer Pilot’s question, then he would have been a liar. Jesus said nothing to answer Pilot. The greatest philosophical question through all time was asked. And, he answered, not a word. Not one single word. If he had said anything, anything, it would have been a lie. Why? 

    Because, Truth is not based on opinion. It is better to ask, how Truth is, instead of what Truth is. It is the same sort of step one takes, when the scientist looks into the dark starry skies and will ask how, but the theologian will look up and ask why.
    God is much bigger then us all. King David once stated—“Who is man, that Thou art mindful of him. Who knows the mind of the Lord, and who has been his councilor?” There are mysteries in this life, sweet beautiful mysteries, that we may never know the answers to, but that still should fill us with hope and excitement and wonder, not fear and anguish. It is a great and liberating thing to wake up one morning and realize that we do not have to get it right, that we do not have to know the right answer, and that we do not have to hate the sinner and love the saint, and that love can be easy and hate can be hard. So my first piece of wisdom that I would like to give to you my dearest little niece, is to always know, that your daddy loves you, your mommy loves you, your brother loves you and Jesus loves you and I love you. I will write you soon about the details of our book we will be exploring together.

    Love always and always— Uncle Clifford.

    Comment by clifford — 1/20/2005 @ 5:32 pm

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