2008-10-31

Well this is ironic...



Apparently a bunch of my fellow evangelical Christians decided to get together and pray for the economy. Nothing really wrong with that. The problem is that they decided to gather and pray at The Wall Street Bull. Probably because they somehow feel that touching an object while they pray somehow releases some sort of spiritual anointing, a number of pray-ers prayed while touching the bull, as per the photo above. A video of the event shows the crowd singing "God Bless America", though not the Bull-touching bit.

What is ironic, though, is that these fellow believers of mine forgot very disturbingly about a rather important event in biblical history - namely Israel's worshipping of the Golden Calf (Exodus 32) which made these rather fervent believers look like they were involving themselves in idolatry. Furthermore, the irony continues when it was progressive, non Christian blogs and commentators who picked this up (see here and here).

Even more ironic, if that were possible, is Colossians 3.5, which says:
Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. (ESV)
The English word covetousness here is the Greek word pleonexia and is roughly translated as "the wish to have more". The NIV translates the last few sentences more roughly as "greed, which is idolatry".

So you have a bunch of Christians praying over a golden calf which looks suspiciously like idolatry. But then when you take it to its next level, they're not really praying to a statue, they're praying for the economy. But by meeting at the Wall Street Bull, they are essentially aligning themselves with the financial industry, which means they're really praying for Wall Street who, through their greed, has ended up causing misery for the entire nation. So in many ways these Christians are praying for an institution which is based on greed - and that, according to Paul in the Colossians, is idoltary.

As someone who knows a little bit about the Bible, this sort of event is shameful to the Christian faith, no matter what the intentions of the participants were (unless there's footage of them cursing the bull as being a representative of greed, then I might think they were okay).

7 comments:

Ron Lankshear said...

Oh No. I could not believe the sight - perhaps that is Aaron with his hand on the horn.

Thanks OSO

Sam Norton said...

My mind has well and truly been boggled.

BTW I'm still mustering the courage to shift to Linux - I at least now have a 2nd machine I'm going to try things out on - but what has kept me back is the realisation that some software that I use depends on windows to run... V annoying.

Ron Lankshear said...

APC mag has a great article on dual boot

http://apcmag.com/the_definitive_dualbooting_guide_linux_vista_and_xp_stepbystep.htm

I followed it last year when my HD blew up and the new HD with XP would not read the old HD neither could Macbook. But Ubuntu did. I was very impressed - I got back nearly all my data. like 98% and this was a seriously thrashed HD.

The apps on Ubuntu seemed good. But like you I have Windows stuff I need to run.

Web design with Frontpage and my trusty Finance program MoneyCounts windows 3.1

WINE does handle many Windows programs but I did not see what I wanted listed.

But my old PC does dual boot and as we speak I am downloading Ubuntu now 22% right on last day of month using my Usage limit to the full.

Lifehacker have a page on using it from a USB stick and I will try that. And I will re-assess my old PC as to full Ubuntu not just dual.
I'll boot into Linux and see if the network can talk to it.

As OSO said OpenOffice is great as is Audacity and I can continue to copy my LPs into CD MP3

John M said...

As a recovering Multician and someone who wasted his youth (well, middle age) doing things like adapting the PASCAL source code for LZW into ANSI PL/I in a 36-bit environment, I wish you all the best with your hot new Linux variant.

But to get back on topic, please check out this WikiPedia paragraph, especially the picture:

*** begin quote ***
The tauroctony

In every Mithraic temple, the place of honor was occupied by a tauroctony, a representation of Mithras killing a sacred bull which was associated with spring. Mithras is depicted as an energetic young man, wearing a Phrygian cap, a short tunic that flares at the hem, pants and a cloak which furls out behind him. Mithras grasps the bull so as to force it into submission, with his knee on its back and one hand forcing back its head while he stabs it in the neck with a short sword.
*** end quote ***

John M said...

Hi OSO,

I've just reposted your article with intro before and discussion after taking off from the links in my comment above.

Ron Lankshear said...

A good page John

Yes Mithras and worship of the Bull goes back a long way. Earliest town I know of is Catal Huyuk in Anatolia had bull images and that was before the Black Sea flood.
Lovely title one site on it has -

http://www.ancient-wisdom.co.uk/turkeycatalhuyuk.htm

The Black sea flooding disruption had people moving around and Bull worship went all around the Mediterranean - Crete (Minotaur) etc and Egypt. One guide to Timeline in Egypt are the Bull mummies which give details of Pharaohs.

So an idol is an idol. And I only recommend laying hands on people.

Micah Neely said...

Especially ironic since some think the bowling green bull was originally a statement on the greed of the exchange not a symbol of a powerful economy. It *was* installed without the permission of the city.