For years on this program, in homilies and personal discussions with parishioners, family, and friends — I have explained that there is no such thing as progress. That you can’t earn anything. That nothing you have belongs to you. No one owes you anything, and even what you seem to have will be taken away, so give it away now because you owe God and your neighbor a debt you can never repay. That you are not a victim – on the contrary – you are the abuser, and you should not keep tabs when you help others because your life does not belong to you.
I have insisted that Scripture is the Pearl of Great Price. The only treasure of value. It is so precious that any time spent talking about anything else is wasted breath. That is why people are sometimes nervous around me during coffee hour, let alone family gatherings.
In recent years I have directed my parish council not to use words like “progress,” “success,” “legacy,” “build,” or “engagement“ during meetings or in printed materials and notes.
I have doggedly acted out Pharisaism publicly so that with each breath when I preach the judgment forcefully, everyone present is certain that I am a hypocrite so that on the off chance that anyone submits to the biblical commandment, they are absolutely clear that it is the righteous commandment that guides their steps and not my example.
I have ridiculed the abuse, criticism, and disrespect of parents (evangelized by popular culture and Disney children’s sitcoms) not because our parents are good (no one, according to Jesus, is good) but because, as the Good Book proclaims, whatever we are, we are no better, if not worse, than what came before us. I have ridiculed parents, too, because I am a Pharisee, and my job is to preach Psalm 78, like it or not.
Richard and I have dismantled our culture, politics, identity, and ideologies of every flavor on this podcast – and still, people want to say, “I agree with you, Father…”
Beloved, in Christ, you can’t possibly agree with me. Even I disagree with me.
Only the dead agree with Scripture.
One day, God willing, Richard and I will have a chance to read the Book of Revelation on this program – a book that handles the function of the martyrs elegantly. In the meantime, with respect to our inability to agree with Scripture, we’ll continue our discussion of the genealogy in Luke 3:28. (Episode 482)
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