Monthly Archives: October 2004

At lease someone benefitted from these books.

Ten years ago during finals week at the junior college, I left my dorm room to go the bathroom down the hall. Returning 5 minutes later, I found someone had stolen my text books from my desk, presumably to sell them back to the book store for me. Only I never got the change. They got all my books except for four that were someplace else. Well, I’ve been toting those four books around, a chemistry text, an AutoCAD text, a Fortran programming text and an engineering statics text, keeping them in storage for most of the past 10 years. Each of these books cost between $40 to $60 when I bought them. Today I thought I’d see if I could sell them used on and found that the combined total value of these books would be about $3.75. So I have sent them to the circular file. It would have been better if they had all been stolen.

Anabaptist Readings…

I have just finished reading two chapters from Spiritual and Anabaptist Writers edited by George Williams. It is a little volume worth reading. In Chapter V, On Free Will, Balthasar Hubmaier speculates on what happened to the human will at the Fall. He is inspired so to write due to problems he identifies in Lutheran followers who seem to emphasize God’s will to the point of completely overriding man’s will. Hubmaier levels some good critizism’s against the abuses of the Lutherans, but I think his argument is weakened by employing the philosophy of church fathers and an often alegorical interpretation of scripture.

Chapter VI of this book recounts the Trial and Martyrdom of Michael Sattler, a leader of Swiss and South German Anabaptism. I found this chapter most fascinating. It reads alot like the accounts of martyrs from Foxe’s book. Sattler impressed me as a godly man of biblical conviction who made an excellent witness by his trial and his execution.

Now I would go home and fix myself some lunch, but I am parked on the other side of the wash and it has been raining quite hard for most of the day so far. Having no desire to be rebaptised today, I think I will camp out in the library.

Ah my dear, dear Augustine…

Those are the words of a Russian song which has recently been running through my mind. The reason is that I have been reading Augustine’s A Treatise On The Predestination Of The Saints. It’s rather good but it does take multiple readings and some untwisting of some linguistic pretzels to get his drift. After 25 pages of this, I was drawing to a close thinking, “Gosh, he could have made this about half as long,” and I come to Augustine’s conclusion wherein he writes:

I have said a great deal, and, perchance, I could long ago have persuaded you what I wished, and am still speaking this to such intelligent minds as if they were obtuse, to whom even what is too much is not enough. … Let this, therefore, be the end of this treatise, lest too great length in this one may give offence.

Ah my dear, dear Augustine…

a little gardening space…

Last week I moved into an apartment in a little barrio of the San Fernando Valley. It has a balcony about 8ft x 3ft and looks out into the living room of my neighbors across the alley. Way back in the day, on an old website which may yet resurface somewhere, I once said “the world is my back yard.” I do enjoy kickin’ about my back yard. But my backyard space is now at a premium and my seminary studies will put a krimp in my kickin’ about style for the next 4 years or so. Therefore I’m migrating my backyard to some virtual real estate.

A dacha is something of a Russian country home. Or at a mininum, a tiny plot of land outside the city where you can go and dig in the dirt, drink in the sun and enjoy a glass of kompot. If you are out in the country, at your dacha, you are на даче, na dache.

So, if you are in the neighborhood, and care to drop by, come see me na dache.