Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Do You Believe That...

The Almighty God exists?

Either He does or He doesn't exist. The evidence of the world around you either suggests the presence of an infinitely powerful creator or it suggests a chance occurrence. It is not a question of which of these options you believe but which does this world's phenomena suggest. When we say "suggest" we mean that the evidence points, through some authoritatively logical principle, at one of the two conclusions. It has to be a logical principle otherwise how could the suggestion pass from the phenomena to you with meaning.
The position that God exists has as its "suggestion" the presence of an almost infinite order, macrocosm to microcosm, physics to ethics, at a level that in many cases reduces to an irreducible complexity that has to all exist or not at all. The logic followed is that which appears designed and ordered suggests a designer since any degree of chaos (the designer-less state) is defined by the degree of disorder.
If you need an example, science would be happy to provide one. In the attempt to find intelligent life on other worlds, we have pointed radio telescopes and launched unmanned craft listening for any message from the vastness that are the heavens. Can you imagine the elation and the claims of proof that a single ordered phrase of sounds or numbers, perhaps only ten seconds or digits long , would create in the expectant researchers? To them it would prove, as it should, that an intelligent being, sufficiently capable to transmit the phrase had to be on the other end and wished to be known. In fact the space craft we have launched bore an inscribed plate which we assume would be evidential (along with the craft) of our existence to alien life forms. We presume with William of Occam, that the "simplest explanation is probably the correct one". In another secular example, we know, in archaeology, that man has lived somewhere when we see the grosser forms of ordering, say a short stack of stones or a pottery fragment, that some ancient tribe (we rightly conclude) has left behind. The discovery of Order is evidence of ordering beings. With the creation we face a range and complexity of order that would take an ordering being only describable as an Almighty God. Such is the reasonable "suggestion" from creation.

Let us pause a moment. You might not choose to believe the suggestion measured out above. It did not claim to be a proof. It was merely a "suggestion" present in Nature in which you will or will not have faith. If you will not, you have not proved, in any adequate way, that God does not exist, only that you don't want Him to exist. The same level of rational demand placed on the God-believer is required of the God-unbeliever. To disbelieve rationally you must show how the evidence suggested that particular claim to you. Otherwise you are standing close to megalomania. If you do not provide a rational argument you must be claiming that ultimate truths arise unbidden to your mind, that you have a god-like prophetic and revelatory gift. I think we can agree that you don't possess such a remarkable quality.

To affirm God's nonexistence one has to have a "suggestion" in the World's being that rests on some logical principle as well. Remember that we are not discussing what you choose to believe but whether or not that belief was preceded by a natural and logical suggestion. What is it about things actually being within the complexity that scientists have devoted centuries to unravel on the assumption that laws and constancy keeps their discoveries true, what is it about all this that you see, which "suggests" an accident? I know you can tell a story of accident and chance but what about the changes of life in that story that requires that chance, or more accurately, the absence of will, was its cause? What principle tells you that this all has a self evident mindlessness? And also remember that this necessary "suggestion" of Nature must overwhelm the suggestion (which you accept as valid) that order must be willed. It must be huge, this suggestion and logical principle, to invalidate the reasonable suggestion of a very large, ordered, and interrelated universe brought into being by a infinitely powerful deity. Otherwise you must deny there is order (making even your thoughts disordered and consequently invalid) .

Christians tell a story of God's creation but back it with pointing to a valid suggestion we all accept, present in all the evidence. We will all accept it or face ruination of our humanity, only able to participate in life as animals. The Unbelievers tell a story of unwilled and accident based existence but when asked for a principle that sustains it merely point out more parts of the story. Telling us more of the fanciful accident story is like a simple Christian who claims the Bible is true because the Bible says it is. Wise Christians know that God's "eternal power and deity are clearly perceived in the things that have been made".

For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse;
Romans 1:19-20

And without faith it is impossible to please him. For whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Hebrews 11:6

"And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father, and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind; for the LORD searches all hearts, and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will cast you off for ever.
I Chronicles 28:9


Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I'm "It".

I must be getting somewhere in life. Josh Gibbs, who knows everyone, tagged me first and referenced said tag in his preface. It is like getting a Golden Globe.


Four Jobs I’ve Had:

1. janitor
2. sailor
3. bookseller
4. graphic designer

Four Movies I Could Watch Over & Over:

1. The Three Musketeers (Richard Lester version)
2. Gladiator
3. What's Up Doc?
4. Incredibles

Four Places I Have Lived (Apart From Where I am Now):

1. Annapolis, MD
2. Ann Arbor, MI
3. El Centro, CA
4. Yokohama, Japan


Four TV Shows I Love:

1. House
2. The Office (British version)
3. Scrubs
4. The Prisoner

Four Places I Have Been For a Vacation:

1. England
2. Grand Canyon
3. Montana
4. Spokane

Four Websites I Visit Daily (or almost daily):

1. Effable
2. Michelle Malkin
3. Lucianne
4. Cedar Room

Four Favourite Foods Flavors:

1. Onion
2. Butter
3. Black pepper
4. Bacon

Four Places I Would Rather Be With My Wife:

1. alone
2. shopping for anything
3. Outback Steakhouse
4. Did I mention "alone"?

Four People I’m Tagging:

In Christian kindness (doing unto others as I wish I had been done by) I tag no one. Register your thanks in the comments section.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Carpe Caffe

At last, a coffee cup worthy of the name.
Matte black for that sober Big Haus sense of the sublime and yet, a glossy white inside so that you can see the heady, opaque seepage which graces your day.

It (or they, being 72 in number) arrived today and there was rejoicing in these environs.

In honor of their presence I dredged up a poem written over twenty years ago.

It is titled....
Coffee

It crawls from the pot echoing glory,
Victory as black as the night it defeats,
Raising the shades that blinded us. More we
Owe this gallant, this ambrosial treat.

This morning comes on Columbian feet,
Moves us to make us to run in the race.
A sacrifice placed on His mercy seat,
The God of all comfort judges its case.

Does he decry it as Stygian trace,
Or grant you the peace of St. Stephen’s face?

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Annum

T'was one year ago today that I, the oracle of Big Haus, began to give my words unto the sphere of Blogo. It is time for you, from the Evantine acolyte to the anti-Futilitarian reader, to recollect, to lean forward on your keyboard, and ponder whether this year has been one well spent. Beneficial? Yes? No? Self absorbed nonsense? Got some choice terms and correctives dripping like venom from your tongue? Let us hear it, bucko. There are a lot of you out there. In this year we have had about 4,000 unique visitors so I am looking for about 4000 comments on this post. I am not so old that I cannot be chastened and I am not so full of myself that I cannot be made fuller still.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Farmer’s Prayer

The skies, on wind and blue crack’d grey,
Let low light shine at empty trees.
Warm with cattle and late stack’d hay,
In barn below the moss, his pleas
To timbers echo twice sincere,
Nay, thrice the prayers arise anon.
“Good gifts from solemn Autumn here.
My barn hath life to winter on.
The wind outside brings cold a-day
And freezing death to hill and pond.
With ample food for mine, I say,
Thy barns hast Life and Life beyond.”



by Evan Wilson

Real Thanksgiving

"Thank you for doing that," said she, smiling in a way that conveyed real sincerity.
"I didn't do it," you said, being that this was the only honest response.
"Well, I pictured you doing it, so thank you." Her smile was a little more fixed and insistent.
A pause settled down on the bistro table. Someone was smoking a cigarette somewhere nearby and it added a pleasantness with the noise of other patrons. Your coffee cooled a moment longer untouched. It was time to choose your words with diplomacy and yet carry the fragile child named "Admonition".
"You are, truly, a forty watt bulb." You smile in a way that conveyed ontological certainty and took a sip.

I suppose that someone at sometime has thanked you for that which you did not do. The thanks in that circumstance are nowhere near as valuable as being thanked for that which you did. In fact, they are not valuable at all. A presumption from the above illustration is that thanksgiving is only actual, not when we do it, but when it tracks directly with reality. People can only stand before God in honor and thanksgiving with a certain submission to realities that God has defined and made.
Romans 1:19-22
"For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse; for although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools,"
This is not only applicable to the secular mind which fails to absorb the world that stares them in the face. This is for the Christian who shies away from the the obvious conclusions available in reality. Thanking God for your government "for there is no authority except from God" and thanking God for submission to your husband or parents. How many Christians fail to be thankful because they don't actually believe that they "look up" at parents, husbands, or kings. If you believe in that which God has made, you can render both honor and thanksgiving naturally. Have you accepted what is?
Thanking God for His grace is truly effective when you believe it is part of your reality. This is another evisceration of thanksgiving. There are things for which we know we ought to thank God (which we dutifully do) but about which we only hold doctrinal affirmation. It is not as much a part of our reality. When you drop a valuable vase on the concrete patio, you will find the difference between a reality based adoption of gravity and a doctrinal one. And when you sin do you search for grace with the same "real" alacrity with which you dove for the falling heirloom? You took that humbling and costly experience with thirty-two-feet-per-second-squared and never, ever will carry anything so clumsily and casually as you did that day. You seriously believe in gravity. You trust it every step you take. Is God that real? Is Sin? Is Grace?

Grandma gives you socks for Christmas. You thank her because you ought. It is not that you disbelieve that the socks or she exists but that you don't believe that such an action truly sufficed as a gift. It wasn't what you wanted. It wasn't really a gift in your reality so it wasn't really thanksgiving when the words trickled out of you mouth. That it is real, and you thanked her, is insufficient. Rich thanksgiving is offered according to the real by someone who has submitted to the real.

The oracle: Know what is, live no other, be thankful for it.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The Earth Trembles

A romance through the ages rang, as true
Blue belfreys clapped iron fists on five
Long tones of mood, tailing tales of virtue
Stood upon its head. Deaden’d men, though live
And married once, woo’d Fate next to the best
Of faiths. The husbands of this second wife
Were pitied souls, purblind in some protest
To some less hareem’d version of their Life.

These, "Mister Collins" each, would trip to fall
Into their lustings dark, made mud with tears,
And soiled nuptial garb for all. The gall?
They wore the stained same but naked fear
Had made their cap of sense forgot and gone.
Their shirt of mercy now meant naught but luck.
Holiness a cloak by “decree” withdrawn.
Feet shod in good news sank from sight in muck.

To woo this wench were wanton words of pride.
Her damp and dirty past, a lust refined,
Asked that the rival wife be put aside
So “maid succeeds her mistress”. Concubined
Till, by her bed, Fate addled all of thought.
They poemed her puddled beauty and her swamps.
We know it’s true that Love is blind but not
That mud is wedding cake. This grimy pomp
Is destiny that proved they knew not which.
When blind lead blind they tumble in the ditch.

by Evan Wilson

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

For Sin and Hell

I suppose that the question is less on whether we believe that God exists and more on whether we want Him to exist. The pre-Christian mind needs to conclude that "God exists and He rewards the seeker" (Hebrews 11:6). To be at that point one must have had a wanting for the benevolence that only a God can provide. The pre-Christian has to hope. They are described as "without hope or God in this world." If they always suspect, doubt, roadblock, stall, then the message of the Gospel will not meet eager ears. But they must hope, not for world peace or a cancer free Aunt Betty, but they must hope for the rewards of God.

Many people think that money will solve the calamity of their life. They start to imagine a rich uncle who will die and they will inherit the answer. They buy lottery tickets in flagrant abuse of the odds because the "answer" is money and they have hope. God can answer many of those calamities better than money but no one can see how and many Christians live with such similar calamities that it gives a negative testimony to the lost. But Hell, on the other hand, can't be fixed by money or cosmetic surgery. Forgiveness of sins cannot be accomplished with a Roth IRA. A tax-free lottery win can bury you in the Benjamins but you'll still be damned, and to be more clear, damned eternally. To create a hope that leads a soul to grace we have to preach a problem the answer to which only God controls. The testimony of our lives must be a testimony of righteousness gained and lived with the joy of Life Eternal. No more of the entertaining church that "seekers" (who are not seekers) will attend and decide to add bits of the Christian religion to their family's sense of purpose. They haven't sought God. They have no hope of God's answer in the Lord Christ for the sins of their benighted souls.
"Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the preaching of Christ." (Romans 10)
"Faith is the assurance of things hoped for." (Hebrews 11)
The kind of hope we offer and that we create in the hearer is the kind of faith we get from our "converts" Is it any wonder that the Church today is filled with unregenerate souls? What does your church offer in lieu of forgiveness and Life Eternal? Belonging? Neat culture? Modest dress code? Ethical authority? Family protection? Big answers to all your questions? Patriarchal humbug? A youth group pop replacement? Ritualisic juju?

I know, I know, not everyone drawn by these things has done so with such a shallow expectation. Many believe that somehow, somewhere in the magic back rooms of THE CHURCH the salvation machines are working overtime to guarantee salvific grace will ooze out of the pew and leech miraculously into their's and their children's unsanctified behinds. This is Christianity folks, not Baal worship. All the belonging, all the performance, all the passion plays are but filthy rags. You family's service in the temple is pointless. The church has no grace to give.

The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart (that is, the word of faith which we preach); because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved. The scripture says, "No one who believes in him will be put to shame." For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and bestows his riches upon all who call upon him. For, "every one who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved." Romans 10:8-13

But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God; who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12-13


Jesus died for your sins. When you hope against hope that that is precisely what He will address in you, you stand ready for the Faith that saves.

Monday, October 30, 2006

A Gothic Weekend

We, the elect eighteen, sat about a great table and spoke of the reshaping of Europe at the hands of Scandanvia. Gotland and Borgholm giving us Beowulf the Goth and Sigurd the Volsung. We watch a Christian heresy bring about the Fall of Rome rather than the Truth. And because of Euric the Visigoth in Spain, Emperor Anthemius calls on Riotimus the Briton. Is Riotimus Arthur? He is last seen at Avallon. And was Constantine III the usurper really the father of Uther Pendragon?
And then came victuals.
And then the Sagas... and cigars...and single malt... in my library.
Some would call it a good time. Still others would say that mankind was never meant to sustain such bliss this side of Ragnarok. We did. So there.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The Hareem

The golden tree, framed by oak,
Under glass above my desk,
Danced with joy as wind caressed
And tore her garment piece by leaf.
Day by day more lustrous few
Fell from her to grassy floor,
And all the other wives of wind
Swayed with same and nuptial joy.
The lord of this light urban wood,
Who dressed these dryads in their youth
In beauty green, o’ershadowed all.
With black and towering, tumbling sky
He treads the wedding isle
And sees their beauty, unadorned;
A promise fair of ruddy children
Springs from the Autumn ground.

by Evan Wilson

Monday, October 23, 2006

Brisk

With back to the wind warm thoughts
Of thanks within me breathe.
Collar up and cap down low, I ought
To mind the cold that seized
The world herebouts. But no, and not
A thought, my face is in the lee.
And smoke, all mine, whips ‘way and fraught
With fall, cold fingers, dancing free
About my pipe, find warmth. Caught
By life itself.
Good day, O God, to thee.

by Evan Wilson

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Complaints?

"Do all things without grumbling or complaining."
Was this written by the Apostle because he didn't think there was any brokenness in the creation, any cause for complaint? Perhaps he thought we should recognize the fallenness and just internalize, husband the ulcer we have worked on since high school. Perhaps you don't understand the world in which you live.
Broken and full of fools? Yep, you betcha. To move from there to an internal or external complaint, another belief has to be clarified. Who is in charge here? Who has responsibility for governing the broken system and the annoying company of dunderheads? That is what a complaint or grumble is actually about. It is not about the flaw in the matrix. It is about the flaw in the governance. It is an emotional usurpation. It is the beginning of the seizure of power, of rebellion against those who rule, in your opinion, so poorly. The heart demands better than this. The lips cry out what is the abundance of such a heart. And finally some action, stress cadet sacrificial work loads demanded of self and others to fix what the fools wouldn't, until, with old age, bitterness and frustration hammers the mind into little miserable pieces, crumbling under the onslaught of the inevitable winner, Futility.
This is rebellion, not just against reality or the verse above. This is rebellion against God. Why did He subject the world to decay and futility(see Romans 8)? He subjected it in hope. And you thought that complaining was the the very voice of hope? If you complain, you complain like the Israelites in the wilderness. You have said that you don't trust Him to govern His world, certainly not as well as you would if you had all power. The decisions in the government of this world are different and more demanding than you think. This can be confessed. This can be changed.
I Corinthians 10:9-13 We must not put the Lord to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents; nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer. Now these things happened to them as a warning, but they were written down for our instruction, upon whom the end of the ages has come. Therefore let any one who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your strength, but with the temptation will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

We can be better than this. We can honor the governments God has granted this world. There is a way of escape. The Bible says not to rail against, not to grumble about, nor complain to, but it does have a speech proper to the failings of the world. Have the governments allowed calamity to get through? Are you anxious? Request, plead, and thank.

Philippians 4:4-8 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let all men know your forbearance. The Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

If you are a complaining person, let it be known to you this day, that you don't sound any more like a Christian than someone who dropped the F bomb. Next time you are rendering your judgments, insert the F word before it. You know, "F-ing traffic!" or "F-ing friends who didn't f-ing remember my f-ing tastes!" I can't type it out because I am what is called a Christian. You can say it really because if you are complaining it will sound more natural, more poetically in keeping with the theme.

Since we are all f-ing dying, opportunities to f-ing complain will only increase.
But the Christian has a choice of other words to live by.
Rejoice.
Forbear.
Request.
Supplicate.
Laud.
Peace.





Saturday, October 14, 2006

Dusk to Dark

Join us (Wes Callihan of Schola Classical Tutorials and myself of The Big Haus Society) for an Antiquities seminar! These are enjoyable days thinking and talking about the long ignored glories of the past.

Our Schedule:

Alaric the Visigoth through Attila the Hun
The Glory has Departed
Rome was realizing that she was in no position to be out so late alone. There were new gangs in the neighborhood and the condition of her virtue was suspect and no longer any protection.
Evan Wilson

Sandwich Lunch

Arthur, Sigurd, and Beowulf
The Tree of Dreams
The fifth century was a time of plowing, tilling under the centuries of classical glory but at the same moment, a time of planting. The seed was sown that became Western Europe's myth and cultural identity.
Wes Callihan

Attila the Hun through Theodoric the Ostrogoth
Extreme Unction
The Germanics and the Goths have played long enough with their prey. It was now a time for death and devouring.
Evan Wilson

Boethius and Benedict
Chaos & Consolation
The Mistress of the World was dying and everyone knew it. This shaking of the unshakeable was disturbing the souls. They needed to turn to something, in their religion and thought, to find consolation.
Wes Callihan

Dinner:
Residually Roman ergo Italian


Readings and Smokes:
Recessional: Lest We Forget
Wes will read perhaps of the Sagas and Evan will read C.S. Lewis' narrative poem Lancelot.

This seminar is two weeks from yesterday. If you would like to come from out of town and need a place to stay, just ask and we will see if our guest rooms are still open.

The Difference a Day Makes

Friday: Rollerblade punk
Saturday: Defender of the Freedoms of the West

Hoo Ah!

Graeme has joined the Army National Guard and was processed Friday and is serving his first duty weekend beginning today.
I gave him the haircut last night.
He will serve his senior year in the Guard, go to boot camp in the summer and enter the Army ROTC at UI in the Fall. Heck, I'm proud. The New Empire needs soldiers and I am certainly one who believes that the Legions deserve our honor and service. As always, it is Peace through superior firepower and the Story of Man is writ on the battlefield.

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Arrogance of Man

As I have said before, we define ourselves by the range and success of our wills. It becomes a problem of folly and then evil when we claim a range and/or a success where we have it not. This is the problem declared by St. James in perfectly reasonable and often echoed plans stated in his fourth chapter, verse 13. "Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and get gain." This is "boasting arrogance". The remedy is not to always live spontaneously but to dodge the arrogance. "If the Lord wills" is the addendum but not for incantational benefit and as a verbal pretend awash in "Christian speak". We state it out of the abundance of our hearts. Our will in our plans is not the highest will. We are but a vapor. Even your continued living will be at the permission of powers higher than thine.

We all enjoy growing our little emotional, financial, or real estate fiefdoms but the evil (which beset many satraps of the Persian Empire) is to be confused by your downline successes. With the focus of your manifest will expected to be a guide and authority for your citizens, you too ought look up at your own overlords with similar clarity. You are a citizen of God's kingdom. He might have other plans. The rich man in Luke 12 was making very reasonable plans. His view was all downward as he said "I will do this... I will store...I will say to my soul.." God said to him, "Fool! This night your soul is required of you." The richness of our selves, found in the expanse of our kingdoms, must be second to the richness of God's kingdom. His rules ours.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Days of Portent: The Royal Treatment

Al Guyer and The Oracle in tag-team birthday splendor surrounded by babes who proffer gifts of tobacco and hooch.
As one who has an ongoing knife fight with futility, these words I hiss through my clenched teeth to those appeasers who look on this scene and say, "It doesn't get any better than this." Yes is does, and it shall, both in this life, and the Life to Come! So there.

(For those familiar with The Haus who find this scene strange, we moved the dining tables into the living room and vice versa in order to dine in long banquet pomp. We put it all back.)

Friday, October 06, 2006

Hurricanes

On the bombing of Iraq

The sound of thunders coursing blue,
Ripping clouds in sundered night,
Ringed with eyes, (Ezekial's wheel),
They see the fleeing stricken reel.
Dervish, can you lift the fallen?
With cries of ‘Jihad’ from the rubble?
Twisted rock and timber rising
In anger at the tears, (surprising),
The sky gods in their justice weep.
Presumption is laid less than flat
As craters fill with smoke and dead.
The signature of nations’ dread
Upon the deed and lease of least.


by Evan Wilson

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Octoberfell

And when October fell
And dark descended golden,
Hearts that dormant lay
Leapt out of Summer’s molten
Heat to Harvest, filled with angels,
With reaping to be done.
The season called for dying,
And they answered, all as one.
That angry answer roiled above.
Hands fair clenched the Holy Rood.
They come to bathe their feet anon
In the dying wicked’s flowing blood.

by Evan Wilson

Monday, October 02, 2006

The Halls of Mojo

Did they believe me?
They certainly liked the food.
They got a free highlighter and pen with their notebook.
Cigars. Did I mention I provided cigars?
They'd better believe me.

Saying the Unthinkable, You Know, Like Oracles Do

Here's a thought. What women call love is actually honor. Certainly not the broad honor (no pun intended) we give some governing official but the same heart/head notion and expression. A governor's relationship to us is as one to many. "Love" occurs when a woman is personally and intimately secured by an agent that was not in the Great Chain of Being for her heretofore.
A woman's love in marriage is weak when the husband only has possession of the honor given to "husbands" ( general honor belonging to a kind) or no honor at all. Her love is strong when she perceives and reveres the individual honor given to his actual individual excellences. This notion of honor/love becomes the love we speak of romantically when the personal, intimate securing qualities of the man reaches a certain pitch in the woman's mind as she regards her jeopardization in life. Her own personal, immediate fief needs a particular, local rule. This encounter with "love" is particular and unique because of particular and unique subjective vantages but, in kind, it is not some arcane other magic for which understanding is impossible, it is honor.
Such is feminine love.
Masculine love is all Mojo.
I guess you should have been at the seminar this weekend.

Friday, September 29, 2006

A Serious Limerick

It is not that I think that you’re wrong,
Or positions you hold, headstrong;
But the way that you say it
May gainsay or betray it-
Nay, twist my allowance ere long.


by Evan Wilson

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

An Oracle

Rap music. Making room for junior high poets who can't sing but would like to be famous anyway. It must be so hard to think of a tune. But easily enough to" smack mo crack hoes into next June."

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Just an Observation

It struck me this morning, and I could be wrong, that the Emergent church is less of a reformation than a trend. What is that trend based on? I concluded that it is a passle of adults whose most devout, concrete Christian experience was in their youth group growing up. Look at the famous leaders. Don't they all seem to relate like a youth pastor? I am not commenting on whether it is good or bad, true or false. I am sure that many people have their lives wonderfully ministered to by such churches. I am sure that they are fellow believers.

But why, O, why do they lack this observant self description?. For the same reason I struggle with seeing the similar in me. I know that I am prone to think that my own patterns of life are "the balanced Christian way". You know, bookish, rational, tweedy, black coffeed, nicotined, poetic, and Lewisian (but not a dork who likes Tolkien). I am tempted to think that such is what the Gospel would create in every man. These are cultural differences like "barbarian or Scythian". There ought to be a clear distinction between what I prefer and what the Holy Spirit creates. It sounds obvious but why is it that we tend to fabricate for our preferences that which sounds like spiritual compulsion. What Christ makes of me upon looking at Him makes those Emergent youth leader vs. Oxbridge wanna-be philosopher distinctions fade to nothingness. My culture is the spontaneous and compulsive reaction to me according "to things which perish". My "life is hid with Christ in God."

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

This Persuasion

I have often said, perhaps here, that there are two kinds of Christians. KIND ONE: They are the ones who believe that Christ died to save the Church (capitalized on purpose) and the individual, in his beliefs and his life of salvation is the collateral effect of that Church. KIND TWO: This other group believes that Christ died to save the individual and the collateral effect of a gathering group of so saved individuals is a church.
That is a simplification, of course, and some might wonder if it goes any deeper. I consider that KIND ONE is a deep and abiding folly and that the distinction between it and KIND TWO is the same as between the Old Covenant and the New. While there are many ways for the saints to attempt to put new wine into old skins, let us look at five broad areas which are somewhat obvious. KIND ONE is a Christianity of the external, hoping to seep in to the soul, and KIND TWO is that of the internal, unavoidably infecting its world.
Allowing the good to go first, five categories of the internal Christian life are:
LIFE, LIGHT, LOVE, JOY, and FELLOWSHIP.
Those matching in the external life are:
CULTURE, CREED, LAW, ENTERTAINMENT, and FACTION.
Do you realize, as you look at those lists, that everything you have ever complained about in the Church, at least in other churches, is of KIND ONE? Let us compare , shall we?

LIFE is who the person has been made by their earthly and heavenly nature which spontaneously and compulsively effects their culture. CULTURE is the establishment of a broad, designed end which by the force first of dictate and then, with time, tradition, hopes to seep into the nature of the individual.

LIGHT is a knowledge whose illumination functions where it was dark, your own soul. You know to what you hold fast because that was the switch you flipped that convicted you, showed you repentance and found, by its light, forgiveness. It makes all things visible to you. CREED wonders how the church will remember what is true if we don't codify it, memorize it, and chant it back to our keepers.

LOVE is generous. LAW is the tithe.

JOY cannot forget that "I am healed!". ENTERTAINMENT, acknowledges that Christians are supposed to be happy and says, "Watch this and cheer up, dammit!"

FELLOWSHIP is finding contentment with the church. FACTION is insisting on a movement.

In order to become "members of one another", KIND ONE has you sign up with them and they train you to at least wonder, if not overtly check, the membership club card of others as they enter your ecclesia. Look back over the qualities of the external "visble" church. Is it not the religion of all earthly religions? It doesn't matter that it speaks wonderfully true things about the Triune God and the work of Christ. It as if they said "We want a religion just like the nations round about but we want it to be true and bigger and better." KIND TWO considers that if you "are" Christ's you probably value what you have in Him. You recognize those that have it too.

Certainly both kinds of Christian can be deceived in false brethren. At least to fool KIND TWO Christianity, fraudulent brothers must work very hard to fake the LIFE LIGHT LOVE JOY. I know real believers who struggle with these elements of the Faith. Usually you have already lowered the bar in your own lives regarding what those mean until even a Mormon could qualify by being like the "nice, good citizen" to which you have slipped. Go back and look at how those gifts of God are expressed in the truly changed believer. Now, how hard do you think it is to fake CULTURE, CREED, LAW, and ENTERTAINMENT?

Maybe Colossians 2:16-23 will read more clearly with this distinction made.
"Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a sabbath. These are only a shadow of what is to come; but the substance belongs to Christ. Let no one disqualify you, insisting on self-abasement and worship of angels, taking his stand on visions, puffed up without reason by his sensuous mind, and not holding fast to the Head, from whom the whole body, nourished and knit together through its joints and ligaments, grows with a growth that is from God. If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the universe, why do you live as if you still belonged to the world? Why do you submit to regulations, "Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch" (referring to things which all perish as they are used), according to human precepts and doctrines? These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting rigor of devotion and self-abasement and severity to the body, but they are of no value in checking the indulgence of the flesh."

Or Galatians 3:1-5

"O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified? Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law, or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh? Did you experience so many things in vain? -- if it really is in vain. Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith? "

Or if God might be more direct, Hebrews 8:6-13

"But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry which is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion for a second.
For he finds fault with them when he says:

"The days will come, says the Lord, when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; for they did not continue in my covenant, and so I paid no heed to them, says the Lord. This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall not teach every one his fellow or every one his brother, saying, `Know the Lord,' for all shall know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more."
In speaking of a new covenant he treats the first as obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away."

The Oracle, stolen from St. Paul in Galatians 5:7-9,

"You were running well; who hindered you from obeying the truth?
This persuasion is not from him who calls you.
A little leaven leavens the whole lump."

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Of Dark Days

Let God on high be praised above,
No threat of sunshine here below.
Dawning, mistrise, the grey of love,
O'ercast delights, mine eyes allow.
Chill discomfort demands attire
Which once obeyed is certain bliss,
And tramping out o’er moor and mire
Along with friend and pipe and this
Damp dawn is heaven here on earth.
The many gods sing high of Him
As cold, grey fear enthrones the North,
A sober joy that sunlight dims.

by Evan Wilson

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Ministry Update

http://thebighaus.com//html/NORTH12.pdf

Friday, September 15, 2006

Posterity for the Too Cool


The lads, Graeme and Gunn, in whom I am well pleased, leaning with that certain "what-is-it" on the railing of Aunt Peanut's deck in Montana.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

North

Lincoln green steps back a hundred paces into grey
As Odin cries for war;
The damp and calming coolness turns faces from the day
Of Baldur, Frey, and Thor.
But many thousand, pipes alit, step boldly to gate
Of Grendel’s grave, ah yet;
The mantle bravely fallen, wool, a Highland skein of fate
Weaves Siegfried in its net.


By Evan Wilson
because it is September,
the weather has changed,
and I am wearing long sleeves again.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

The Oracle: The Reason Why

For those of you men who live out of town or perhaps don't see me with any regularity, this is the opportunity to spend a day going over a philosophy of manhood, relationships, and behavior unlike you have ever heard. The seemingly self-serving title of "The Oracle" was bestowed by young men coming in the night to ask questions about women. A few years back, one such gentlemen said that a seminar was in order. With his help and pressure was born....
THE MOJO ORACLES.

If you would like to come to town for it, let me know if you desire to use our guest rooms and we will see what we can do.


The Mojo Oracles are for Men only.
This year the seminar will be
Saturday, September 30, 2006
10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
at
THE BIG HAUS
325 North Polk, Moscow

Seminar Schedule: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
First Session: THE SUM OF ALL DESIRE
Are there basic reasons for everything every man does?
The first session explores the claim that we are all after something simply obvious. It is the underpinning of a rationally sound pursuit of being a man.
Sandwich lunch
Second Session: HIERARCHY & SUBLIMITY
As the prerequisite to honour and dignity, a philosophy of position has been lost in modern America. Regaining that mode of thought is essential to becoming the gentleman.
15 minute break
Third Session: NOBLESSE OBLIGE & THE SEVERITIES
The more masculine virtues of Honour, Dignity, Integrity, and Gravity are the oft ignored virtues, and are not friendly to the modern egalitarian outlook.
15 minute break
Fourth Session: THE MOJO
The Biblical understanding of the Attraction called “Woman” and the benefits of that understanding in resisting temptation and winning a wife.
15 minute break
Fifth Session: The Word of A GENTLEMAN
Gathered from the teachings of that penultimate gentleman, Philip Stanhope, Lord Chesterfield, and the Book of the Courtier by Count Balthazar Castiglione.
1 hour break
Roast Beast Dinner— 7:00
Attire: Casual
with, after dinner,
CIGARS

FIN — 10 p.m

COST:$50 —Make checks payable to The Big Haus Society
Cost covers a notebook with essential documents, lunch and dinner,
cigars (if you want one), and a certificate of attendance.
Send to: The Big Haus, 325 N. Polk, Moscow, Idaho 83843
Payment required in advance to secure a spot (which are limited).
Cancellations less than a week prior will only result in a refund of half the registration fee, due to cost of materials.
For more information
call Evan Wilson
at 882-8679 or 882-4885
or ewilson@turbonet.com

Thursday, September 07, 2006

You Are Quite Wrong

Mark 12
18 And Sad'ducees came to him, who say that there is no resurrection; and they asked him a question, saying, 19 "Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man's brother dies and leaves a wife, but leaves no child, the man must take the wife, and raise up children for his brother. 20 There were seven brothers; the first took a wife, and when he died left no children; 21 and the second took her, and died, leaving no children; and the third likewise; 22 and the seven left no children. Last of all the woman also died. 23 In the resurrection whose wife will she be? For the seven had her as wife."
24 Jesus said to them,
"Is not this why you are wrong,
that you know neither the scriptures
nor the power of God?
25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. 26 And as for the dead being raised, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the bush, how God said to him,
`I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'?
27 He is not God of the dead,
but of the living;
you are quite wrong."


This passage has interest to we Christians in the defense of the resurrection of the dead. "Gotcha," we say to the Sadducees. But it also has a side, but necessary, point concerning the Christ's cosmology. Christians, especially Arminians, like to move God to some place outside of Time in order to make classical theism fit with freedom of the will. There are basic problems with that move but this passage is not usually addressed in the argument. It should be.
If God is atemporal the Sadducee's point could be held and Christ's argument eviscerated. If the Sadducees or Christ knew of an atemporal place where God normally dwelt (and it seems today that Christians without a thought in their pretty heads know about God being "outside of Time") then the verse quoted by Christ would naturally be applied to God’s relationship with the patriarchs being “always” (from His atemporal vantage) and would not necessitate an “afterlife”. He, God, could be the God of the living because He is atemporally and consequently, permanently there in their living times. That would answer the verse speaking of the patriarch's "present" relationship with God and His with them. But Christ leans on the present tense of the remark as if their past state and now dead condition was of no consequence. But was not their past life a place that God could access in His atemporal dimension? So certainly would the Sadducees say if they knew of this silly notion. Christ is affirming that they are alive in the Now, in an afterlife synchronous with our earthly life, and only if that state is true can his appeal to the tense of the verse bear any weight. His relationships must claim the actuality of the beings related to and the Past and the Future have no "living" people and are not places that even exist in the relationships of God.

The oracle: Jesus Christ's view of the afterlife necessitates transcendent heavenlies that don't transcend "was, is, and will be".

After all, (and I mean "after"), Amen.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Of Mysteries Too Great for Mere Mortals

A miracle happened last night. My wife, the Amazing Missus, was preparing the Big Haus menu in the dining room as she listened, with one ear, to me reading aloud C. S Lewis' essay "Religion: Reality or Substitute" and leading a subsequent discussion in the living room. While it is a tremendous essay, all of that "smarty pants" talk faded to nothingness as reality ripped at the seams. She was writing, in her lovely, loupy, girl cursive, something she never usually writes. The words "frozen waffles" flowed from her mechanical pencil. And, (be still my heart), as the word "waffles" found graphite reality, from my lips, a room away, sprang the word "waffle".

Yes, dear friends and dearer enemies, this place, this Big Haus, is a vortex of arcana. Banshees roam the halls and leave unwashed kitchenware by the sink. Dang their filthy hides.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

The Nonesuch

All views that I have held have been questioned by minds greater and lesser. All views of mine, singly and severally, cannot put aside, as Lewis put it, "the logical exclusion of dispute".
Except for this one.
I was, west of the Azores and north of Trinidad, the cutest child ever born.
This pronouncement includes mine own children and, of course, yours.

Admittedly, in the spirit of Christian humility, I have not worn well. Each of you can feel free to consider yourself a better looking adult than the Oracle.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Be Of Good Cheer

I found this old drawing I had done over twenty years ago and scanned it and colorized it.
I didn't just want to inscribe "Grim Reaper Comix" across the top so simple threatening poem would have to do.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Off Mycale Peninsula

Gliding on forgiving green deeps,
Oars dipping in silent tattoo,
The warship to battle, it leaps
From seven to eleven knots. Crew,
Captain, and pace drum are urging—
The oarmen thunder with groaning—
Eleven knots tightens the turning—
Eleven knots from the sea foaming.
Rowers nigh dead lick salt from their lips,
The sweat and the lash lend life to their grips.
Calluses break driving water behind,
Mouths mutter curses on captain and kind.
Faster by far than death should arrive.
“Faster lads! Ramming speed! Drive!”


by Evan Wilson

The Heights

You have read of the calamity that fell on the saints of Big Haus!
Though from these Olympian heights (above my chamber door) Scotland fell, one Ginny Metzler, having read of my dirt, offered to share some of hers.
Praise be!
Here you see what was given, rubbing cheek to jowl with the survivors of the Beast.
1. dirt from the deserts east of Jericho
2. the Coliseum in Rome
3. salt crystals from the Dead Sea
and most importantly in our travails,
4. Scotland
On the far right sits a little jar with a clod in it picked from the wreckage of glass shards and dust swept into a trash can. It is now labelled "The Ruin of Scotland"

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Them Changes

Aeons pass. Stuff happens.
A bird flew into my library the other day. Its delicate sensibilites could not seem to find the door which, as some of you know, is eight feet wide. The tussle that ensued involved two adults, a sheet, a broom, and a dustpan.
In the Annals of Nimrod, a mighty hunter before the Lord, it is said that the Oracle, wielding his dustpan (that he had named Landwaster), smote the beast until it fell from the heights and assumed room temperature. The wounded were then counted ere the trophies could be set up. The sheet in its efforts to entangle the beast had swept the dirt collection from its place on high. Down plummeted the flasks at 32 feet per second squared and Scotland the Brave smacked the glass on my desktop a ripe and juicy one. Scotland and its glass-walled home were smashed to atoms and the glass top to the desk went similarly but in larger pieces.
What you see before you is the desk awaiting its new transparent protection and it is being shared with you this day as, with the changing of the seasons, new stuff and old have been arranged thereon.
Of these articles, feel free to ask.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Till As Angels Be

We wouldn’t chase our souls apart unless
We died and wander’d up to Heaven’s height
Where should and shall that death make meaningless
These vows made only sacred in this life.

My mind walks o’er the years of you gone by,
Slows my step toward our passing’s parting,
Though I would run if in thy lap I die
In heaven, to Heaven’s apt arriving.

A poem to my wife
on our anniversary
28 years
August 12, 2006

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Sin: Excuse or Escape

A creation subject to futility and sin since the Fall has made up our minds for us. We face the travails of the calamitous in our lives and the task is to arrange it better. The guilt of sin is one such pain and man has either to brainwash himself into thinking it doesn't affect him that much or to flee from it outright. Of course the Christian view ought to be flight, escape, resistence through the grace of our Saviour but hidden in our philosophies are basic life defining principles that tempt us to excuse rather than escape.

The positions of determinism and free will each carry that virus. Determinism has the excuse ready made. While those that claim the view affirm that they alone are guilty of sin they have, hanging behind the scenes the strong affirmation that they are not the cause of anything. All excuses attempt to remove causality from the self because cause, to the degree causal, is responsibility. Even within that theology there is the admission that this principle is true. Just look at the means that are used to claim that we can not take credit for our faith. We all "seem" to exercise faith unto Life. The determinist says that those within the free will camp are trusting in a faith that, to their mind, is their own and hence a work. And, they say, we know we are not saved by works lest any man should boast. How do they make this "seeming" self originated faith not your own? God causes it and therefore only God should be credited. So you see, the determinist agrees that the truly causal (regardless of "Seeming") is responsible. The question naturally arises that, if God causes faith and sin (and He is 100% causal to both according to the determinist), why am I credited for sin and denied it for faith?

As an aside, if faith is freed from being a work by the causality of God, how then can even a bona fide work, claimed as a work by the individual performing it, be a work?

The free will position, while not in an of itself an excuse for sin holds temptations as well. It acknowledges the individual's autonomy. For the sinful agent, their sin was their autonomous wanting brought to life. The lordship of the self is easily seduced into being the only lord. God can be put at a distance from which the penalty of sin is less likely to occur. This can be a physical distance (like deism), a strength distance (like paganism), an informational distance (like process theology) , or an emotional distance (like agnosticism). Freedom of the will bears its own guilt but if the adherent of the position wants to dwell in the comfort of arranging his own conscience with more local justification, he just needs to cease seeing the God of the Bible as close, personal, concerned, involved, opinionated, and, without a doubt, powerful.

The oracle: Let us measure our lives less by the benefits of our philosophies for in them can hide excuses, our hiding places. Let us give ourselve more to the benefits of God's grace, for in it is our escape from the guilt of sin and the power of sin.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Define Sovereign

When someone says that God is Sovereign, any Christian worthy of the name finds himself agreeing but at the same time feels that the speaker is using code for something else. It is largely because the idea of YHWH, maker of Heaven and Earth, being sovereign is too obvious to be that speaker's only motivation. He who intones that "God is sovereign" is "up to" something. The word "sovereign" means "rule" and, of course, God does... all things. But the person that was belaboring the obvious was not saying that God rules, he was saying that God exercised a certain kind of rule, that of exhaustive sovereignty. He is saying that God is an Autocrat (all decision falls to Him) versus a Monarch (the highest and ultimate judge of all decisions).

The foregoing is an example of the infamous "boa constrictor" argument. This a form of argument is one in which a concept is uttered in terms with which everyone in the audience will agree (the loose loops of the snake) and once everyone assents to it, applying it narrowly, presuming on the agreement of the audience (constricting the coils). It will either be that the loose or the tight use is being misdefined. In this case, the tight is the erroneous usage.
They say, "God rules."
We say, "yeah, you betcha."
They say "So you agree that God is in exhaustive control and has decreed all things."
We say "Nope."

The question before Christians regarding the Sovereign of the Universe is His method or kind or extent of rule. And the debate is narrower than we think. The nature of rule is that there be two (minimum) participants, that which rules and that which is ruled. They don't have to be outside an individual as in the mind ruling the body but they must be discrete. The discreteness is present only if there is a real potential of regard and disregard of the ruler. The ruled may not merely be the extension of the will of the ruler or there is no other will for the ruler to rule. If God's governance is presumed to be an exhaustive autocracy (in which nothing occurs but the will of the ruler) there is no actuality to the existence of the party called "the ruled". We know that in ourselves, that the closer we get to an absolute submission to our wills, the more closely we are able to define that which is our self. If there is an absolute and exhaustive submission to the will of God, nothing exists but Himself. The apparent diversity of creation would be merely the presence of God. It is pantheism ( "God is everything and everything is God … the world is either identical with God or in some way a self-expression of his nature"). Consequently, exhaustive divine sovereignty is not sovereignty at all. Only that which grants (by whatever method) an encounter with possible obedience and disobedience can claim to rule. God rules like all rulers rule. He has not exhaustive decision but exhaustive imperium, the unquestionable ability to reward and punish all things. His absolute ability to punish and reward all that is in His creation is the arena of sovereignty. The question before Christians is between, and the ratio between, that which He causes and that which He rules.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Define Justice

Justice is when an action occurs in an arena over which an agent has an established hierarchic governance and, regarding which action, the ruling agent has previously expressed its will to the citizens of that arena, said agent awards benefit or applies detriment to the actor discovered to be responsible in a measure proportioned to that actor's contribution and intention of cause.

Is it justice if an action measured is only possible?
Is it justice if the less measures the greater?
Is it justice if an agent not governing that arena executes a decision?
Is it justice if the actors are unaware of the ruler's will?
Is it justice if the ruler does not consider responsibility?
Is it justice if causality is not the measure of responsibility?
Is it justice if measure of responsible cause does not include degree of intention?


If I am wrong and one hundred percent causal for the above statement, by what definition of justice could I be blamed?

Friday, August 11, 2006

The Glory of Desk Drawers

Desk drawers are a sanctuary. Things which had meaning and lost it need a place to hide until they can regain their meaning. What are they hiding from? Some woman, probably a wife or mother, scouring a house looking for things to sell in a yard sale. Yard sales are the liturgy and sacrament offered up to the Great Ancient Anatolian Goddess "Shopping" who has said repeatedly through her foul, eunuch priesthood that someday, somewhere everything you can possibly buy, you can buy for 25 cents. Think of these women as the Saturday Morning Maenads. But I digress. Desk drawers are partially designed to be outside a woman's sight. They blend. When shut, they look tidy and neat. All the while, inside their shallow deep and dark recesses, a gathering of the important stuff that will be the joy of many grandchildren after your death. This is because stuff cannot speak for itself. Men know that stuff in drawers has lost, if only temporarily, its meaning and cannot lay about in the open. The religious fervor of Woman would ignore your entreaties, look upon its pointlessness, and consign it to a bin, a bag, or box labeled "yard sale". There is no appeal. If she finds something wandering about after it has been consigned, she may choose to serve the commands of this G.A.A.G.S. rather then St. Paul's teaching regarding the withholding of connubial bliss (he was against it). Rather than risk this destructive force in a marriage, a man should set up these "drawers of refuge" in strategic spots around his domicile.
If any of my readers are women and are suppliants of G.A.A.G.S. , today you will be exposed to a telling victory in the Oracle's application of his "drawers of refuge". I was rummaging in one (no other word is allowed for this practice) and, lo and behold, I came up with those two thingies pictured above. Defenseless stuff at its finest. You women are probably thinking, "Where were they hiding?" On the left (grid is at .25 inch) is a bronze coin from Judea circa 103-76 B.C. issued by the Hasmonean king Alexander Jannaeus while on the right is a bronze coin from Judea issued at the time of Festus, the Roman governor before whom St. Paul gave his defense. There you go. Antiquity in a drawer in North Idaho, hidden, because women walk the Earth.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

If You Seek, You Find

Your saving and living faith is not merely about the sum and truth of that which you believe. It is also about how you got there.
"And without faith it is impossible to please him.
For whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists
and that he rewards those who seek him." Hebrews 11:6

One of the key elements of faith, in fact its very beginning, is to believe that God is there and He is benevolent to those who seek Him. No one but one's self can accomplish this. No ecclesiastical institution nor historic compendium of truth can replace the absence of it for an individual. God wants to be sought. He rewards those that do.
His purpose was clear as early as the dividing of the nations as He says through Saint Paul at Athens,
"And he made from one every nation of men
to live on all the face of the earth,
having determined allotted periods
and the boundaries of their habitation,
that they should seek God, in the hope
that they might feel after him and find him."

There is a Club Christianity which you can join with the half-faith mentioned at the first. You can become a member in good standing by mere regularity of attendance at services and assenting to certain facts about God. If surrounded by a culture that applauds this as conversion, God (and I mean this) help you. Half of your faith is still missing. When did you first devote yourself to knowing Him? When did your upbringing, if it were in a Christian home, stop being the end of your faith and start being a signpost. Do you revel in all the revelation of God, from Nature to Scripture? Do your words tell a tale, by prayer, praise, and testimony, of your pursuit of God. Do you seek?

If you do not seek Him one wonders if you actually believe He exists and is gracious. Without having asked and answered the questions about God, sin, and salvation how could your faith ever expect to be "the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen"?

"Seek first the kingdom of God."
"He who has ears to hear, let him hear."

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Maduro Dance

The off white lines wear grey in early twilight
And dance the measure played. They swing in wreathes
Down the floor of Brahman with moves polite
Scenting all the Atman that I can breathe.
Warm pirouettes come kiss my lips and leap
To warm my soul; tone my eye with amber.
Golden hearts are thus refined. Drawing deep
On the heat of slow consuming, cambered
Coals while hands untouched by the warmth of such
Ecstatic calm, damn contentment and damn
This art, this joy. They say,‘You dance too much!’
But dignity is out of reach to them.
The step, the pace has certain height and grace,
A hint of Spanish with Virginia laced.


by Evan Wilson

Monday, August 07, 2006

Christendom versus Christianity

No, it is not a very original title but the subject has been on my mind. Many would agree with these two categories but they would probably draw the line at a different place than I. I draw it between personal darkness and personal light. There is a sizeable majority of active, sincere (meaning not nominal) Christians who do not seem to be changed by the Holy Spirit. Worse, there are ministries which, seeing where the demographics of "size success" abide, cater their doctrines and their words to attract and keep that majority. That majority becomes the history of the Church. That population sends its generations to seminary. There is more of practical unregenerating belief in the Church than regenerating belief.

Of course, that majority does not know the Lord Jesus Christ and has not been set free from sin. These ministries that speak to them can be liberal and say there is no sin (except racism or believing in sin) but they are generally not successful because they give insufficient religious perks and are hard to distinguish from the secular. The successful church or ministry will be conservative. They try, with the law and church culture, to tidy up these church-going, creed-believers so that a vague similarity to the ethics of Jesus might appear, at least in their brochures. It is whitewash for the "visible church". As an example see any Christian college's PR glossy and then visit the lives of the smiling students, let alone the homes of the teachers. I consider this Christendom infidel, not because it doesn't have faith but because it believes in its belief, like the Seven Sons of the High Priest Sceva in "Jesus whom Paul preaches." My years of observation has convinced me, with no residual doubt, of Our Lord's words, "Narrow is the way that leads to life and those that find it are few."

Christendom plays at being Christian unsuccessfully but quite successfully relives the foibles of Israel. Israel was an unregenerate nation which the Living God had chosen and had controlled through the Law. They trusted these deceptive words "This is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord". That is exactly what the Christian culture mongers are seeking (be they the "keep my kids innocent" neo-agrarians or moralizing, political "prayer in public schools" activists or the Oxbridge medieval protestants engaged in heavy petting with Apostacy). Like Israel, they trust in their history, their liturgy, their buildings, their priesthood, their superstitious sacramental magic, and their social affectations. Yes, it is a "sign and a wonder", an empire which very busy men have built. It must be large, complete, and compelling. It has to make people think of themselves as Christians without personally "calling on the name of the Lord. It has to replace the Gift of God.

The Old Covenant was a needful means of running an unregenerate people with a modicum of external order. The New Covenant is making a different sort of person, ordered internally by the Holy Spirit. If you get handed a "Christian" culture by the leaders of your particular movement, you are joining the Old as Israel not the New in Christ, a shadow not a substance, a playtime of childish ways not maturity, law not grace, Christendom not the Kingdom of Our Lord and Christ. The Old Covenant was just that shallow. But the unredeemed want the shallow because they can touch it. They like their covenant reality to be a large and bumpy objectivity. The blind need it thus that they might feel their way along. They can believe that the church believes the right things because being blind, they have to trust someone else to post braille signposts along the way. They want the church to stand between them and God much like Moses stood between God and the people. But the writer of Hebrews says, "For you have not come to what may be touched." True Christianity is lived out by those for whom the Holy Spirit has written His culture on their hearts. Christianity is the subjectivity of a covenant and the covenant is the promise of a wonderous miracle of subjective change.


There can be splendor in a man made culture. It fills our aesthetic needs and desire for order but it is no guide to successful Christian living. If righteousness were through the law or any outside social manipulation we would have no need for grace. Some things must be your own, personally, as in the phrase "every one who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." Are you one of these? Or do you have more than one "degree of separation" between you and God? There is a difference in metaphysical condition between the man or woman who believes that others believe correctly and those men and women who have believed. The first group wishes to have and needs to have the church they believe, believe correctly and to tell them what is good and how to live. The second have looked into the face of God, unveiled, and were changed. Are you someone who has found the narrow door or are you marching lockstep down a very broad highway to Destruction, with the comforting presence of the rest of Christendom.

The oracle: Christianity and the New Covenant is individual with the church as its collateral effect. It is not the Church with its collateral dictates to the individual.

On the temptation of Christendom, or any part of it, to dictate a culture, C.S. Lewis in Lilies That Fester:
"Anything transcendental or spiritual, or even anything very strongly ethical, in its pretensions is dangerous and encourages it to meddle with our private lives."

"The higher the pretensions of our rulers are, the more meddlesome and impertinent their rule is likely to be and the more the thing in whose name they rule will be defiled. The highest things have the most precarious foothold in our nature. By making sanctity or culture a moyen de parvenir you help to drive them out of the world."

And if you were always suspicious of Lewis, here is St. Paul.
II Corinthians 3
5 Not that we are competent of ourselves to claim anything as coming from us; our competence is from God, 6 who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not in a written code but in the Spirit; for the written code kills, but the Spirit gives life. 7 Now if the dispensation of death, carved in letters on stone, came with such splendor that the Israelites could not look at Moses' face because of its brightness, fading as this was, 8 will not the dispensation of the Spirit be attended with greater splendor? 9 For if there was splendor in the dispensation of condemnation, the dispensation of righteousness must far exceed it in splendor. 10 Indeed, in this case, what once had splendor has come to have no splendor at all, because of the splendor that surpasses it. 11 For if what faded away came with splendor, what is permanent must have much more splendor. 12 Since we have such a hope, we are very bold, 13 not like Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not see the end of the fading splendor. 14 But their minds were hardened; for to this day, when they read the old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. 15 Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their minds; 16 but when a man turns to the Lord the veil is removed. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Misericorde

Lifeless bodies lying, lay with living
Men, torn and suff’ring still. A battle done
But the dying beat back Black Death, hov’ring
In his sorties for the slain. Patience won
More warriors in the slow embrace of pain
Than the reaping instant of the pitched war.
On the field limbs are moving not. They’ve lain,
A tangled knot and mass of meat, no more
A memory of the thundering host. Red
Armour, bent before the killing blows, seeps
Into the mud and knights, with those they led,
Sink rusting into Hell, to dust, to sleep.
But cries, weak cries, above the gore and dirt
That was a proud and standing man at arms,
Lift pleas, Dear God!, to aid or end the hurt.
The different words in different tongue charms
With partial pity an indifferent knight
Who passed. The dagger in his hand had left
The coup de grace till now. His sword and fight
Was why such dying harvest was bereft
Of most of life. A cruel sight to leave.
Quiet parts the pleading lips as breast bends
To feel the steel of Death. The Fates must weave,
Alas, but thus make mercy and amends.

by Evan Wilson

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

An Illustration

Body odor is hard to discern when it is your own. You are happy with your choices of hygiene and you will not notice your pungency without shoving your face in your armpit. You are at peace. Others are not so lucky. It is your odor and their nose. They don't need to put their face in your armpit. They merely need to walk by or step into an enclosed place with you. Soon they are dreading the "fellowship" you offer after church. "Someone," they say gossiping like the Philistine, "must tell you." They certainly should be braver but they are not. They should, in a manly way, walk up to you and declare to the ears that which the nose lacks. "Sir, you are offensive to all that breathes. Without breath we die, but sir, with it we are sore wounded until death may be preferred." Such would the brave man say to his, now, ex-friend. Instead, less brave, he leaves an unsigned note in the pages of the odiferous friend's KJV (the stinky are often sticklers).
Once this note is found and read, the comfort of the pungent is disturbed. The borders of his life have been breached. The proverbial rock with a note has been bunged through his window. Is it a psyops attack of enemies? "You stink" when you don't can be viewed as an attempted misdirection of your efforts in ruling your fief. Is it the fearful admonition of friends who wish you to remedy something that affects them? Both are likely stories as stories go. The choice between them will tell another story, that of self assessment. Most of us, I think, are insecure about our attempts to be physically pleasing and would naturally understand that our self-comfort has misled us again. We may quickly develop into a three-shower-a-day obsessive compulsive. It takes a mighty proud man to be so confident of his hygiene that he feels free to consider the note-writer an enemy whose efforts were an obviously flawed attempt on the citadel of a kingdom wonderfully run.
Do they not know that this is how all men should smell?

There is an irritation ratio that could be discerned. In both stories it is a negative act to lob a unsigned missive into another's life commenting on a failing and it is a negative condition to stink. How annoyed we are with which, is the ratio we find defining our souls. Does my annoyance with the unknown writer predominate? Or my failure to clean myself sufficiently?
Sometimes, when the planets align, the stink is real and the enemies are real. This ratchets up the confusion in dealing. The foul one easily sees the animus of the commentary and is tempted to consign the whole proceeding to motives unconnected with his stench. Others, friends, see that an enemy spoke the needful first and was rejected so they hurriedly scratch out a note and file it in the KJV . "No really, I mean this, you do stink. This is not from the previous anonymous writer." "Sure its not," says the offensive to himself and others who have grown comfortable with a certain level of greenish miasma in the places they gather. This is not a circumstance which will get the stinking to stop anytime soon. Some give up and avoid. Some try to find new ways to speak to the stink. They try directly, as the brave should have done but it is too late. The stinkers have developed a view. They have addressed the concept of stinking thoroughly because they defended against enemies. As for the enemies, damn them. For the olfactorily offended, they need to realize that noses are merely the evolutionary residue (like the appendix) of radical anabaptist pietism. And our friends, we will make and sell a bacterial cocktail that will, when applied to your sweaty areas, grow into a New Wave of Wafting Greatness that Will Sweep the Infidel Nosiness Down to the Pit. And we will also need to develop something for our watering eyes.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Is There a Problem?

Suppose someone calls the police and, disguising their voice and refusing to give their name, lets a detective know of a crime committed. It is called a tip. The police like it when it happens. The anonymity protects those in the know to sufficiently to allay their fears of being embroiled more than they wish. The tipster usually has some criminal connection or guilt that they would rather not discuss with the police. That said, the tipster has information the police need to and should want to know because it gives the forces of righteousness something to go on, a task and direction to pursue. Of course, anonymous testimony would and should never be admissible in court but the tip is not a trial. For the police to treat the tipster as if some unconstitutional blasphemy had occurred is to confuse categories.
"You must confront the alleged mobster yourself first, sir," replied the flatfoot.
"Geez, copper! He'll kill me!" sez the garbled voice.
"He has a right to face his accuser, son. And be sure to take all witnesses against the accused with you. It wouldn't be grave justice in this great country of ours if you didn't."
"(click)"

When a conversation occurs in which I am informed by "anonymous" of some bad action (either of mine own or some others) I have two choices:
1] I can disallow the charge on grounds afforded to me in formal courts, behaving like all actions of this nature were essentially formal. The generic guilt of tipsters is cause enough.
2] I can thank the vague voice and promise to investigate, the guilt of the tipster notwithstanding as the tip refers to something with which I should be very concerned.
The first is that of a martinet. He has confused low things for high things (himself first on the list) and has claimed the bureaucratic dignities of the high as a buffer.
(\mar-t'n-ET\, noun: A strict disciplinarian. One who lays stress on a rigid adherence to the details of forms and methods.)
The second is a virtue called humility of a little practiced Near Eastern religion called Christianity.

But what if the claims are outlandish? What, O Oracle, what if it were about YOU?!
I don't imagine that any of my sins are reposited in my soul without a force field of significant justification surrounding them. My friends won't say anything because they either believe my justification or want to remain my friends. My enemies, whose eyesight regarding my failings is acute and is likely no more tainted with animus then my justification is tainted with self love, they wish, for whatever foul motive, to bring me to my knees. Odd, if I sin, it is just where I should be. They are Assyria, more wicked than Israel by far but God was being faithful to the Jews by reminding them of righteousness at the hands of the Gentile.
They, the anonymous Assyrian, is an ample target for scorn but I, the chosen, the Israelite, am gifted at neck stiffening.

Is knowing a name all so important when we are trying to hear the Lord's direction and correction? If our spirit is being admonished we should be thankful that our spirit is alive enough to hear the admonishment and not so closed that it demands a name be attached. Would the discovery that my accuser is a sinner himself (as is probable) merely relieve my curiousity and send me before God to examine my conscience? No, it would be added justification that my desire not to listen would be confirmed.

Anonymous accusation is a test of our humility. This is no institutional trial before our peers (they would need to prove the claim) but a trial of our souls before our selves (for we can know, without awaiting the formalities of trial, the proof).

We must not wait until our madness is restrained by a speaking ass.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Grace That Was Alexa

On the death of my niece, Alexa Grace Wilson

And should we say this child with life as such
Must be bright with light and sight to bless?
And should we pray in tears o’er trifles much,
Define the best and love th’unworthy less?
Now would this race of earthbound men refuse
To grant e’en fifteen quiet months below
And would we trace and speed the minutes? Muse
Upon here numbered mourning hearts and throw
Your minds into the time that calls us all.
Wonder, we with sight and ear, if at Death
We will draw friends to compass such a hall
That here at fifteen months appear. Her breath,
Bless’d, unbreathed now, taught the hearts of men
In better ways than many, without Grace,
Amen.


by Evan Wilson

The Code of the Futilitarian

Live as to enjoy earth today.
Live today as to enjoy heaven later.
Live as to die inbetween.

There is nothing better for a man to do.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Of Peace and Glory

There have been men like Cyrus the Great, the Emperor Trajan, William the Conqueror, and Saladin, whose exploits warm your heart as they marched their legions along a bloody path to peace.

And then there are people like the 7th Earl of Cardigan, James Thomas Lord Brudenell. What a world-without-end idiot!

The wonderful lessons of war stand close to the disciplines. While some gloried few learn that they are called to a greater mandate, most will learn that they have stepped too far.

Bully Beer

Lift high and hail the amber glass
Or darker still, the stout.
Nectar distilled of barley grass
And hops to stop about.
Salute one time the brewer's men
They've labored weeks to this.
And toast the one who bought this round
Bestowing blessed bliss.
And thank your God for life and friends
Whose hints of heaven cheer,
Good conversation without end
In warmth with bully beer.

by Evan Wilson

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Quo Vadis

If you are a Christian, the Mosaic Law ought to be abolished in your life. The Law was used, according to Galatians, as a custodian for the unregenerate, as the world, filled with the unregenerate, awaited the advent of Christ. The world's history can be a metaphor for the progress of your own soul.
You began in...
1. A state of innocence
2. The Law came
3. Sin came to life
4. You died.
5. Because you are dead, more and more Law is added in order to keep you in custody.
6. "Who shall deliver you from this body of death?"
7. You were set free from the Law and Sin and called to Righteousness by Jesus Christ
8. You, perhaps, insulted the work of Christ by turning back to the Law.
9. "What shall deliver you from this second death?"
10. Oh, I dunno, maybe it is in the Book of Galatians.

The claim for the need of Law in a Christian's life carries with it two errors.

Correction #1: First, a factual mistake of identity. If someone is in Christ and in His grace they don't need it. "Sin shall have no dominion over you for you are not under law but under grace."

Correction #2: The second error is more of an "oops", rhetorical/PR blunder. The persistent claim that Christians do need the Law, far from defining the deeper walk club, defines the user as "slaves" not "sons", living in "shadows" not "substance". The more Old Covenant you apply, the less valid your claim on the New Covenant. This error is based in the logic sprung from the definitions of the two covenants. The Old is external law under which a person dies and the New is internal law by which a person lives. This, folks, is their difference and their place of contention. One cannot be a "strong" Christian and be under the Law. Such a Christian has "nullified" the grace of God. If under the Law, you are either claiming you are a Christian that is morally retarded, internally prepared for the impious, and needing to be led around by a keeper or... you are not a Christian at all. The presence of Law claims one thing, that the person cannot be trusted to naturally live in accordance with Holiness. It says, "Hey Jesus, thanks for nothing!"

What place is there for those under the Law? They can fit in with the Mormons nicely and they'll always look better than the profligate. They get all those heady benefits of making their own religion and the gratification of insisting on it for others. Luckily "Jesus" and "Christian" are not copyright which will make what they design look more like the real thing for the other "spiritually challenged". They'll get a lot of help out of church history because their kind of spiritual retardation has been prevelent in many of the more famous chuckleheads. They'll feel like they are part of something big and lasting, you know, like "falling away from grace"(very popular over the last two millenia). It would be nice to have the help of Jesus and His Spirit but "This persuasion is not from Him who calls you." So, tragically, they will still look worse than those for whom "born from above"and "fruit of the Spirit" meant something.

Jeremiah 31:31-34 "Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant which they broke, though I was their husband, says the LORD. But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it upon their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And no longer shall each man teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, `Know the LORD,' for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more."

The oracle is this: The less restrained a person is internally, the more restrained they will need to be externally. Go figure.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Let Me Think

Of my life,
on having memories of the Anne Arundel County Library
whose children's section was in the basement
down a worn, colonial staircase.

On narrow step and ever down,
My own small feet descend and rise,
Small arms filled full with pictures bound
In blessed books for children eyes.
I searched for those, an alibi
For looking, longing at my dreams
Which held a story in this wise;
To sit in quiet thought unseen.

But child life is life around
Many things of play. It tries
To, sneering, snatch away what's found
By quiet wits. They criticize
My daemon, and to exorcise,
Build games and tawdry toys between,
But pictures still within me rise
To sit in quiet thought unseen.

With age words were with pictures crowned
Without the drawings loved and prized
And hid my passion in the town
Of souls. I should apologize
To those who meanly memorized
The plays of sport and business teams.
I'm a cripple man, black-avised
To sit in quiet thought unseen.

I do not tempt, evangelize
These latent ways, my creed serene
But cross myself and catechize
To sit in quiet thought unseen.


by Evan Wilson

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Buying, Selling, and Getting Gain


Perhaps because I thought these things out in your company or perhaps it is merely the curse of thinking too much while being a graphic designer with a Kinkos nearby, but, for whatever reason, you are looking at the product resulting from my interest in the social philosophies of gentlemen and ladies.
Yes, now you can have these available for easy reference in your own pudgy hands.

The posters are 11x17 on card stock for $10 each.
The booklets are sixteen pages of tightly packed, perfunctory pith for $6 each.
Go to
http://thebighaus.com/html/contact.htm
for the means of contacting us with any requests.
Checks can be made out to: Evan Wilson
(Throw in $3-$5 for mailing if you are overwhelmed by the opportunity, ignoring any rational objection made by your spouse, and just send in an order.)

For the curious: The background is the carpet in my bedroom.
For the critical: perfunctory \pur-FUNGK-tuh-ree\, adjective:
1. Done merely to carry out a duty; performed mechanically or routinely.
2. Lacking interest, care, or enthusiasm; indifferent.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Petty Kingdoms, Poorly Run

"And he said to him, `Well done, good servant! Because you have been faithful in a very little, you shall have authority over ten cities.'"
Our lives are kingdoms held in fee. While few of us are or ever will be truly great (I have a corner lot in Moscow, Idaho and Alexander was dead by the time he was my age) we have to stand up and recognize that we are not animals. Our humanity is in our Will, our Governance, and the extent of our internal Civilization. In fact, though we are smallish kingdoms, our self knowledge has come to us accurately when it knows where is the border of our realm and the peace of the life inside it. I meditate on this when speaking to others who can't seem to find the simplest wisdom by which they could govern better.
I think, "You don't do "You" very well, do you? Maybe if you had less in Life, you could do it better.
"Every one to whom much is given, of him will much be required"
We have been given humanity. It is a station, a dignity a little less than the gods. How have we scribed out the ways and orders of our lives? How have we governed? The rest of humanity watches and measures the joy of our citizens, the contentment of our queens, and the peace of our souls. Are they thinking that perhaps we were given too much?

Monday, July 10, 2006

It Has To Be Said

OOOOh! The stars in heaven and all the saints in heaven preserve us! Aiiiieeee! Italy! Beats ! France!
OH MY! OH MY! OH MY! OH MY!

(yawn)
Yes, I know they are great athletes but so are the cannibals that chase you through the jungle.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Oh Yeah, it is the Fourth of July

Having a cookout. Ribs, beans, fixin's, friends, fireworks. The usual. There is a slight difference that I have with my fellow traveling evangelicals. They want to have the current citizen remember the sanctity of the Founders to inspire a better patriotism. I want the current citizen to be a patriot for the country as it stands today. If they think at all of the Founders, they should briefly consign such Founder's souls to a place of unremitting torment where the worm dieth not.
For the easily confused"
1. The Founders were not patriots, they were sinful rebels against their nation's king and God's anointed.
2. You can be a patriot, but love it for what it is today with today's authorities.
3. Putting a powdered wig on an evil man will not make him godly.
4., Our later benefit (financially and politically) is a crass reason to stand the teaching of Christ and His apostles on its head.
5. "Therefore he who resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment." Romans 13:2