February 18, 2016

"A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian."

Said Pope Francis, asked what he thinks of Donald Trump.

ADDED: Trump responds to the Pope:
If and when the Vatican is attacked by ISIS, which as everyone knows is ISIS’s ultimate trophy, I can promise you that the Pope would have only wished and prayed that Donald Trump would have been President....

The Mexican government and its leadership has made many disparaging remarks about me to the Pope, because they want to continue to rip off the United States, both on trade and at the border, and they understand I am totally wise to them. The Pope only heard one side of the story....

For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful. I am proud to be a Christian.... No leader, especially a religious leader, should have the right to question another man’s religion or faith. They are using the Pope as a pawn and they should be ashamed of themselves for doing so, especially when so many lives are involved and when illegal immigration is so rampant.
Is there an antecedent for "They" in the last paragraph?

AND: I love the Drudge presentation:

154 comments:

PB said...

Pope Francis! Tear down this (Vatican) wall!

Mr. D said...

Can't wait for Trump to threaten a lawsuit.

Terry said...

The crusades were all about building bridges.

CJinPA said...

The world's population is merely seven billion undocumented U.S. citizens. It's our responsibility as a nation to accommodate them.

Tom said...

I've noticed the Vatican, which I visited in September, has a lot of walls and not a lot of refugees or illegal immigrants. Heck, didn't even see a lot of legal immigrants. So, I'm not sayin'... I'm just sayin'...

rehajm said...

For a Pope of the people he's surprisingly out of touch.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

I try to keep in mind when I hear the pope's remarks that they may have been poorly translated.

I'd be surprised if he had the lack of humility to A. declare some other person "not a Christian;" only God knows the content of someone's heart and soul and B. claim that that is "all" that Donald Trump thinks about.

Mike Sylwester said...

The only growth in the Roman Catholic Church in the USA is from immigrants.

traditionalguy said...

The Jesuit true believer in Marxism via Argentina's traditions who is now imitating a European Pope will be seeking refuge himself the day when ISIL breaks into the Vatican and redistributes the treasures hoarded up there as ornaments for the Mohammedan buildings in Mecca.

Trump is a Calvinist Reformed Christian and those are still seen by Catholic Clerics the same way a US Marine is seen by the Japaneses Empire veterans... the few of them the Marines left living, that is.

Skeptical Voter said...

He may be the Pope, although if I were in the College of Cardinals, I would ask for a recount.


But being a lapsed Methodist, I just tune the old coot out.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

You would think the Pope's time would be better spent criticizing the Mexican government for creating an environment that forces millions to escape.

Sigivald said...

I'm sort of with Misplaced - the Pope is almost always quoted poorly and out of context, when quoted on anything, no matter which Pope he is.

On the other hand, even if correctly quoted, remember that he doesn't get to decide that question.

He can more or less decide someone isn't a proper Catholic, but only God gets to decide who is or isn't a Christian well enough to deserve the title.

I'm an atheist and I know that; I can only presume His Holiness does as well, at some level.

(I say that, though I agree that Trump's comments and demeanor are, in fact, not exactly an epitome of the imitation of Christ; he might be a lousy Christian, but one can't strictly say he isn't one, from outside.)

Henry said...

Googling Trump Sky Bridge brought up this link:

For $50 Million, You Can Buy That Tribeca Skybridge and Live in It

Some more googling of Trump Bridge combinations brought up this, which is better:

After graduating in 1964, Trump entered Fordham University, where he learned a valuable lesson. With his father he attended the opening ceremonies for the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, which connects Brooklyn and Staten Island, and noticed that the bridge's designer was not being honored. In Gwenda Blair's biography, Trump is quoted as saying: "I realized then and there, that if you let people treat you how they want, you'll be made a fool. I realized then and there something I would never forget: I don't want to be made anybody's sucker."

See! Bridges are for suckers!

Roughcoat said...

I'm a Catholic, and I tune the old coot out too.

When you're a Catholic you learn over the course of a lifetime to tune out the popes when they say nutty stuff. And not just the popes--the cardinals, bishops, your parish priest, the nuns, whomever. You tune them out and do your religion, your faith. The faith is bigger than all of them. They can't touch the Mystery of it. That's what you focus on.

Sal said...

Anyone who only thinks about building bridges to the Middle East won't be a Christian very long.

Mid-Life Lawyer said...

It's odd that the Pope doesn't seem to have a firm grasp on what makes a person a Christian.

holdfast said...

I heard that the Pope was going to excommunicate the Chinese and Pink Floyd.

Also Marky Mark.


Seriously though, it's things like this that convince me that we can never give away enough "free stuff" to satisfy redistributions like Sanders and this Pope. For them "what's mine is mine, and what's yours in mine".

How would the Pope like it if he woke up one day and found that his Argentina was 75% Muslim. Or that Italy was 75% Dutch Calvinist?

Eustace Chilke said...

I dislike Trump. Foreigners' opinions on American politics and culture I can't abide. He can take all things Francis and stick them straight up his ass.

sunsong said...

Ha ha, Trump deserves that. There will be many more from world leaders :-)

Bay Area Guy said...

Trump 1, Pope 0 -- his Holy Eminence should butt out of American political discussions.

donald said...

I like that Roughcoat!

n.n said...

The bridge to America has ensured a recurring refugee crisis.

traditionalguy said...

Incidentally, the Holy Father is neither Holy nor our Father. This has been well known to people who can read since William Tyndale translated the scriptures into English 530 years ago. That may be why possessing or reading translated scripture was as big a crime in Catholic Ruled Europe for hundreds of years as it still is today in Saudi Arabia.

It makes you wonder who is the Christian and who is just another Roman Empire's Pontafex Maximus, which means Caesar of the Bridge into Rome.

David Begley said...

I've reached the same conclusion as Roughcoat above. I'm absolutely stunned that any Pope - much less a Jesuit! - would get involved in an American election. One of the biggest unforced errors in history.

Very, very disappointed.

Gahrie said...

Perhaps the Pope could address the ruling class of Mexico, who keep their population mired in poverty and corruption in order to protect their power and wealth.

Mexico is a parasite feeding off of the wealth of the US. Not only do they export their poor to the US, remittances from the US are their country's number one source of income.

buwaya said...

"Calvinist Reformed Christian "
The Spanish Empire beat them over time, still going strong when the Dutch fell into decline.
Over the very long run the Spanish beat themselves, really.
The British sort of tried to pick up the scraps.

hombre said...

The Pope, like Trump, has a penchant for shallow, denigrative comments about "the other," promoting his politics and his populist image.

He would be better advised to concern himself with his increasingly fallen flock than with his ongoing Evita impersonation.

buwaya said...

"Ha ha, Trump deserves that. There will be many more from world leaders :-)"

Not if he wins. A friend in need is a friend indeed. With whom you can make a deal.

Ken B said...

The Conspiracy to Elect Donald Trump.

holdfast said...

Lighten up Francis.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OnpkDWbeJs

tds said...

this just means that according to pope Francis infrastructure Trumps real-estate

Saint Croix said...

When asked his thoughts on the liberal Pope Francis, Justice Scalia said, "He's the Vicar of Christ. He's the chief. I don't run down the pope. I think he's absolutely right."

Simon said...

Two very similar men, neither of whose pronouncements have any substance or interest. They're two sides of the same debased populist coin. The sooner we're rid of both, the better.

Howard said...

Shorter version of the teabagging reaction: bring back the Hitlerjugend and Pedophile Protector Pope after we crucify Francis.

traditionalguy said...

American Presidents James K. Polk and Andrew Jackson were Calvinist Reformed Christians. They are President Trump prototypes. Their style is democracy all the way down, and that is what Roman Empire imitators never can comprehend. They fight for what is theirs. If you or the Pope wants them to close their eyes and pray while they are robbed blind by a hierarchy chosen and blessed by a CHURCH of clerics in silly robes, you can forget it.

kjbe said...

"A. declare some other person "not a Christian;" only God knows the content of someone's heart."

The Pope is not defining Trump. He's defining what is essential to Christianity - helping the vulnerable, supporting the discarded and building bridges.

Amanda said...

"Ha ha, Trump deserves that. There will be many more from world leaders :-)"

So right. And it's amazing to read all the negative statements about the Pope here. Looks like Trump trumps the Pope. If God himself announced from heaven that Trump is no good, Trump would just say "Oh did God say something about me? If it's good I like him, if it's bad I don't like him". Yep this guy is the front runner for the Republicans, laughing stock of the world.

Limited blogger said...

Is this good for a 5 or 10 point bump to Trump?

Sebastian said...

It is good to know there is at least one person in the world with whom I disagree about everything. Well, OK: I do think Mexican prisons are kinda rough. Other than that: every single thing. But, fellow conservatives, let's not be baited by Francis to make this an FU election, tempting as it is now that he has added such a deserving target. I miss Ratzinger and Wojtyla.

Saint Croix said...

I think Francis' statement is very provocative and interesting, and also very true. The mistake people are making is to assume the statement only applies to Donald Trump. It applies to all of us.

Are you building bridges to your enemies? Are you talking to them?

Althouse is a great Christian under the Pope's standard.

n.n said...

A recycled refugee crisis with sustainable causes. And a private genocide through abortion rites and clinical cannibalism. The bridge has provided incentives for the the least Christian orientations and behaviors.

Saint Croix said...

Pope Francis! Tear down this (Vatican) wall!

One of the things I always liked about Francis was how he insisted on leaving the Popemobile, and went out among the people. To me, a Pope who is afraid for his life is a very bad Pope. So I was very impressed with that.

Amanda said...

The Pope is not only a relgious leader, he is a world leader and of course he is concerned about an American election, especially one in which the front runner for the Republican Party is a megalomaniac. What happens in the US affects the rest of the world. What happened in Germany and Italy that preceded WW2 affected the rest of the world too, didn't it?

CarlF said...

Nehemiah 1:1-4, 2:1-5
The words of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah. In the month of Chislev, in the twentieth year, while I was in Susa the capital, one of my brothers, Hanani, came with certain men from Judah; and I asked them about the Jews that survived, those who had escaped the captivity, and about Jerusalem.
They replied, “The survivors there in the province who escaped captivity are in great trouble and shame; the wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been destroyed by fire.”
When I heard these words I sat down and wept, and mourned for days, fasting and praying before the God of heaven.
...
In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was served him, I carried the wine and gave it to the king. Now, I had never been sad in his presence before. So the king said to me, “Why is your face sad, since you are not sick? This can only be sadness of the heart.” Then I was very much afraid. I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not be sad, when the city, the place of my ancestors’ graves, lies waste, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?” Then the king said to me, “What do you request?” So I prayed to the God of heaven. Then I said to the king, “If it pleases the king, and if your servant has found favor with you, I ask that you send me to Judah, to the city of my ancestors’ graves, so that I may rebuild it.”

Of course, Nehemiah was not a Christian, but Catholics believe the writings of the prophets are the inspired word of God. So, is God not Christian?

Fred Drinkwater said...

I wouldn't trust any of the reporting on either the Pope or Trump's reactions.
The other day, when the Pope was visiting Juarez, NPR had coverage of some of his remarks. From the voiceover, it was clear that the reporters thought they were covering the Pope shaming the US about its handling of immigration. But if you listened to his actual words, they were all about the forces driving people OUT of their home countries (Mexico and Central America), not the lure of the US or the dangers on the US side of the border.
Reminded me of press coverage of Obama's very early speeches. So much fawning and swooning, and so little careful listening to the actual speeches, or reading of the actual transcripts. The latter revealed the emptiness and clumsiness of his thoughts, but Boy Oh Boy did he deliver those words with Passion and Eloquence!

holdfast said...

And it's amazing to read all the negative statements about the Pope here. Looks like Trump trumps the Pope.

No, American sovereignty and national survival trumps the Pope. Trump is just the unfortunate vessel.

traditionalguy said...

Hint: God is not a legalist demanding continual sacrifice from sinners. That was done once for all in Eternity. Ergo: Needing a political Pope's extra special magical intercession for you with Mother Mary or Saint whomsoever is a scam. That has all been common knowledge since Hus and Luther's time.

Being a lawyer, the Frenchman John Calvin hiding out in Switzerland from Catholic Murder Teams just teaches it better in Institutes of the Christian Religion ( available cheap on Amazon.)

Saint Croix said...

I'm absolutely stunned that any Pope - much less a Jesuit! - would get involved in an American election.

Maybe he's worried about souls and trying to save them. Consider the possibility that the Pope has no real interest in Caesar, but has a lot of interest in who claims to be a Christian, and how they represent Christianity to the world.

Trump has an idea that the best way to be a Christian is to threaten, bully, or kill anybody who threatens Christianity. He's not the only person who feels that way, but it's a very bad reading of scripture. Or, in Mr. Trump's case, a very bad non-reading of scripture.

I am not calling Donnie a bad person--at least not on the Pope thread. He's just a guy who needs a year or two of Bible study, with a small group of Christians. There are lots of people who treat Christianity like it's a football jersey you put on, and then go out and stomp people with it. It's a very dangerous attitude to have, from a spiritual perspective.

CarlF said...

Mark 12:1-11:

Jesus then began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. But they seized him, beat him and sent him away empty-handed. Then he sent another servant to them; they struck this man on the head and treated him shamefully. He sent still another, and that one they killed. He sent many others; some of them they beat, others they killed.

“He had one left to send, a son, whom he loved. He sent him last of all, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

“But the tenants said to one another, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ So they took him and killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.

“What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others. Haven’t you read this passage of Scripture:

“ ‘The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
the Lord has done this,
and it is marvelous in our eyes?”

The general interpretation is that God is the landowner who builds the wall. (Many Catholics interpret the vineyard as the Catholic Church, around which God built the wall.)

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Nehemiah 4

But Sanballat, Tobiah, the Arabs, the Ammonites, and the men from Ashdod were very angry. They heard that the people continued working on the walls of Jerusalem. They heard the people were repairing the holes in the wall. 8 So all these men got together and made plans against Jerusalem. They planned to stir up trouble against Jerusalem. They planned to come and fight against the city. 9 But we prayed to our God. And we put guards on the walls to watch day and night so that we could be ready to meet them.

10 And so at that time the people of Judah said, “The workers are becoming tired. There is too much dirt and trash in the way. We cannot continue to build the wall. 11 And our enemies are saying, ‘Before the Jews know it or see us, we will be right there among them. We will kill them and that will stop the work.’”

12 Then the Jews living among our enemies came and said this to us ten times, “Our enemies are all around us. They are everywhere we turn.”

13 So I put some of the people behind the lowest places along the wall, and I put them by the holes in the wall. I put families together, with their swords, spears, and bows. 14 After looking over everything, I stood up and spoke to the important families, the officials, and the rest of the people. I said, “Don’t be afraid of our enemies. Remember the Lord, who is great and powerful! You must fight for your brothers, your sons, and your daughters! You must fight for your wives and your homes!”

rhhardin said...

Trump is the murarius maximus.

coupe said...

Trump needs Catholics to get elected, so my advice would be to not rile these murderous fuckers up, until after the election.

rhhardin said...

Something there is that doesn't love a bridge.

rhhardin said...

Wallclimbers and wetbacks.

Simon said...

kjbe said...
"The Pope is not defining Trump. He's defining what is essential to Christianity - helping the vulnerable, supporting the discarded and building bridges."

See, this is precisely the problem. Those things are what Francis thinks to be essential to Christianity. But those aren't the essentials of Christianity: Jesus told us what the essentials are, what our mission is, in the great commission and in his stern caution that no one coms to the Father but through Him. Our mission is to save the world from the clutches of the enemy, one soul at a time. That's what Christianity is about, and if Francis wants an ersatz religion that focusses on the social duties of Christians rather than the religious teaching of Christianity, the Episcopal Church is there whenever he wants to sling 'is 'ook.

Diamondhead said...

"Trump is a Calvinist Reformed Christian"

A Christian asks forgiveness for his sin. By Trump's own admission then, he isn't a Christian. Like Obama, he's most likely a non-believer who currently finds it desirable to be thought of as a Christian by credulous people.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sydney said...

Have to agree with Misplace Pants. If there is one thing I have heard over and over again from priests and other clerics, is that no one ever knows the heart of another and it is only God who decides ultimately who is and isn't a Christian. Very surprising to see that sentence attributed to a Pope. Shocking even. Does more damage to the Pope's reputation than Trump's.

traditionalguy said...

"They" is the Globalist New World Order religionists pushing the CO2 is pollution Hoax to create a environmental Marxist Dictatorship they think they will control as Masters of Atmospher War. Currently they are using a senile Rupert Murdoch as the pawn in their game.

sydney said...

Excellent respone by Trump. And the antecedent for "they" is the Mexican government.

Fernandinande said...

"A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian."

Some village is missing its idiot.

Why did the crow and the gull attack the doves? Because the doves were white.

Simon said...

hombre said...
"The Pope, like Trump, has a penchant for shallow, denigrative comments about "the other," promoting his politics and his populist image."

Yep. They're exactly the same—nothing but crass, empty-headed populist nonsense trying to take charge, through force of personality, of an entity that doesn't believe what they believe.

Saint Croix said...
"When asked his thoughts on the liberal Pope Francis, Justice Scalia said, 'He's the Vicar of Christ. He's the chief. I don't run down the pope. I think he's absolutely right.'"

In October 2013, when he said that, I would have agreed. But the clock keeps running and evidence keeps accumulating. It's interesting in that interview, by the way, you can really hear how Scalia thinks—"the chief." That's what Rehnquist was—the chief. And Scalia undoubtedly respected Rehnquist and Rehnquist's prerogatives, the Chief Justice is the boss, he's the one who makes the office run. But Scalia never hesitated to dissent when Rehnquist was wrong, and vice-versa.

traditionalguy said...

And this Pope's claim to fame is as a big player in the Masters of Atmosphere wars. The last Pope stepped aside so "they" could raise him up as to head their New World World Religion Division...It worked in Argentina, so why not the rest of World.

n.n said...

They refers to the advocates of anti-native policies, progressive wars, environmental displacement, abortion rites, clinical cannibalism, welfare industry, and other enterprises that deny reconciliation of civil and human rights with natural imperatives, and Christian religion/morality.

ddh said...

At the risk of being Dean Martin to your Jerry Lewis: The antecedent to "they" is "the Mexican government and its leadership." No one speaks in paragraphs, but we use a paragraph break in transcribing conversations and speeches for legibility. In this case, the paragraph break visually increases the distance of the pronoun from its antecedent.

What was the point of the question? To see if anyone could follow directions? Or to see if anyone was literal-minded enough to answer?

Amanda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sammy Finkelman said...

The thing to take away from this is:

1) That Pope Francis thinks criticizing or even demonizing Donald Trump is non-controversial. At least in Mexico.

2) That the Catholic church may be moving somewhat closer toward outright opposition to immigration restrictions, and, especially deportation - after all, in many cases it is their parishioners the government is trying to hurt. This is only a mild step, though, and very careful.

Bear in mind also that "THE CHURCH" regards everyone as equal. If you are against racism (on the grounds of human equality) how can you be for countryism?

Intellectually, though, what he said is somewhat incoherent, which is par for the course.

hawkeyedjb said...

Is the Vatican surrounded by walls and fences? Why, yes, it is. And they are well-guarded.

Does the Vatican accept refugees or migrants? Why, no, it does not. The Vatican is very strict about who can live there. Even though the Church sits upon a huge endowment, it will not accept any refugees into its own country. But then, "the hypocrisy of the clerisy" is a long-studied subject, one that offers a lifetime's worth of examination.

Amanda said...

"If there is one thing I have heard over and over again from priests and other clerics, is that no one ever knows the heart of another and it is only God who decides ultimately who is and isn't a Christian. Very surprising to see that sentence attributed to a Pope. Shocking even. Does more damage to the Pope's reputation than Trump's."
----------------------
"After all Trump has a history of questioning other people's faith, starting with President Barack Obama. "Trump has long been one of the most vocal skeptics about Obama's birthplace and faith," CNN's Chris Moody and Kristen Holmes wrote back in September when Trump got into trouble for not correcting a supporter at a rally who asserted that the president is a Muslim. (He's a Christian.) Actually, Trump didn't simply not correct his interlocutor, he responded, "We need this question."

But Trump has also made no bones about questioning the religion of his 2016 competitors. Just last week, in fact, he tweeted: "How can Ted Cruz be an Evangelical Christian when he lies so much and is so dishonest?" A consistent Trump refrain has been that Cruz can't be evangelical because he is Cuban-American. "Just remember this – you gotta remember, in all fairness, to the best of my knowledge, not too many evangelicals come out of Cuba, OK?” Trump has said.

Anyway, now that Donald has seen the light and been born again as a believer in not questioning the faith of others, he's bound to produce a Tweet-storm recanting his previous remarks, right?"

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/robert-schlesinger/articles/2016-02-18/trump-slams-the-pope-after-questioning-obama-and-cruzs-christianity

Saint Croix said...

For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful.

That word, "disgrace," means you are cut off from the grace of God.

If you read scripture, you might find that Jesus asks a lot of questions about the faith of other people. He wants to provoke us into thinking about our faith. Jesus often made people mad!

The Pope's innocent statement, that Christians should not only concern themselves with putting up walls, but should also build bridges, has been perceived by Trump as an attack. And so he responds with an attack on the Pope, declaring that the Pope is in a state of non-grace, and is separate from God.

This week Donnie has attacked George W. Bush and Pope Francis. Have you noticed?

Humperdink said...

Christianity? It's whatever you want it to be! Have it your way! You sure don't need to be a believer in Jesus. Just do some good works and that'll do it. Yep, it says so, right here .... somewhere ..... I can't seem to find where good works makes me Christian (i.e. a believer in Jesus).

I do recall reading somewhere that "No one comes to Father except by Me".

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Oh, and others have mentioned it, but here is an actual picture of the Vatican's wall.

http://meanderingkiwis.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/P1160998.jpg

Sammy Finkelman said...

Diamondhead said...2/18/16, 1:00 PM

A Christian asks forgiveness for his sin. By Trump's own admission then, he isn't a Christian.

Maybe, but the Pope didn't give that as his reason.

Not too surprising - he's not all that informed.

Peter said...

The antecedent for "They" in the last paragraph is "Mexico."

In any case, although the Pope is certainly free to assert that "A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian," well, unless you accept that the Roman Catholic Church is the One True and Apostolic Church you might substitute "Catholic" for Christian in that assertion.

Or perhaps offer the counter-assertion, that although "Something there is that doesn't love a wall," sometimes good walls do make for good neighbors? Or perhaps even acknowledge that a lack of walls (boundaries) can lead to a Hobbesian War of All Against All (what happens when defensible space does not exist)?

Or, oh, just file the whole thing under "Trumpty-Dumpty."

Sammy Finkelman said...

If massive deportations were attempted, and there were mass demonstrations, or there was an attempt to force sanctuary cities to stop being sanctuary cities and there were demonstrations, the Roman Catholic Church could easily side with the demonstrators. But not before checking the poll results.

Amanda said...

"This week Donnie has attacked George W. Bush and Pope Francis. Have you noticed?"

Of course they noticed. They probably agree with him, or they choose to forgive him for he knows not what he does. Or they're idiots.

Roughcoat said...

Focus on the Mystery, people. Ignore the rest.

Saint Croix said...

I hope Mr. Trump is not keeping an Enemies List!

Pope Francis
George W. Bush
Jeb Bush
Ted Cruz
Marco Rubio

What's even more worrisome is his Friends List!

Hillary Clinton
Vladimir Putin

Sammy Finkelman said...

Donald Trump said (sometime before the Iowa caucuses)

"Just remember this – you gotta remember, in all fairness, to the best of my knowledge, not too many evangelicals come out of Cuba, OK?”

The problem with that is actually, many Hispanics have converted to evangelical Protestanism (because of problems with the Catholic position on birth control and divorce?)

It is a movement that's been going on all over Latin America.

Ted Cruiz's father also converted, albeit in Canada, I think, although he retained the Catholic opposition to divorce. I think he had some problems, maybe with alcohol, and he sepaated from his mother. Then he got back together after his conversion.

His father became an evangelical preacher in Texas. Ted Cruz is most definitely a Protestant.

Now Marco Rubio. His family started out as Catholic and were Catholic in Cuba and in Miami. Then they moved to Utah. Marco Rubio, as a young child, converted to Mormonism and persuaded his family to do so also (maybe they had to, for him to become a Mormon at such a young age, which was something like 8.)

Then they moved back to Florida, and he and they became Catholic again.

Marco Rubio eventually married a Protestant. Now he is both a Catholic and a Protestant, attending a Protestant service with his wife on Saturdays and a Catholic church on Sundays.

Limited blogger said...

Over at Ace's site they're calling this Popesplainin'

Bob Ellison said...
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traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

"They do it too," is not a defense, Amanda. And questioning whether another's faith is Christian is not the same thing as questioning if the faith a man claims is really the faith he has.

The Pope is 100% correct here saying that Trump is a Scots Presbyterian. Catholics have called that faith a Non-Christian Heresy for 500 years. And Catholics when in power have successfully plotted to murder them for hundreds of years. The big problem the Catholics have had with Trump's Scots Presbyterians is that their faith gave them a clear head and the strength to fight back and win.

So when Pope sees Trump is for real , he naturally says " Damn, foiled again."

Simon said...

Sammy Finkelman said...
"Marco Rubio eventually married a Protestant. Now he is both a Catholic and a Protestant, attending a Protestant service with his wife on Saturdays and a Catholic church on Sundays."

No: Now he attends both Catholic and Protestant services. But you can't be both. Is he a Catholic who attends protestant services for sake of family, or is he a Protestant who attends Catholic services out of a retained cultural inertia (much as I sometimes attend Episcopalian services even as a Catholic)?

Bob Ellison said...

I heard a Trump-clip on Limbaugh's show in which Trump said no-one "has the right" to question another person's religion.

Trump knows where the rights are. Good to know. I thought the U.S. Constitution and American tradition guaranteed that right.

Imprecise language from such an incredibly intelligent person.

[Corrected from a deleted post above, in which I stupidly said Declaration of Independence-- d'oh!]

Tank said...

Tear down that wall, Mr. Pope Francis.

Go on, let a million "refugees" in.

Do it today.

==========================================

Me, I don't judge people by their faith, or professed faith. That's between them and God. But I do judge them by their acts and statements. This Pope has shown himself, over and over, to be a bit of a dope.

gerry said...

PF will be subject to God's justice for each soul lost to Him by the scandalous remarks carelessly made by PF. Meanwhile, the annual Peter's Pence collection will suffer from reduced donations.

Amanda said...

Scandalous! How dare the Pope!

tim in vermont said...

This reminds me of a joke that ends

"I don't know who the guy in the funny hat is, but that guy with funny hair is Donny Trump!"

readering said...

At the time the walls of the Vatican State were built they did not constitute a national boundary. Vatican States extended much farther, including entire City of Rome. Walls were more like the fences around Trump golf courses.

Ken B said...

"Is there an antecedent for "They" in the last paragraph?"

Behold the cruel neutrality of a woman who calls Rubio dumb for his catechresis (look it up).
It is perfectly apparent who 'they' are. And in the spoken remarks Trump even clarifies, he says who they are. Here at about the 1:15 mark. https://youtu.be/faqAQTtP0qQ
Althouse is playing grammar maven, but there is no rule that an antecedent of a pronoun must be in the same paragraph. Nor is it ungrammatical to parenthetically clarify an antecedent if you relize its antecedent might be distant or ambiguous. Trump did this. I think that actually shows a certain mastery of grammar does it not? Greater anyway than "Is there an antecedent for "They" in the last paragraph?"

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

He's defining what is essential to Christianity - helping the vulnerable, supporting the discarded and building bridges.

What defines a Christian is having accepted and acknowledged Jesus as one's savior.

tim in vermont said...

What defines a Christian is having accepted and acknowledged Jesus as one's savior.

I don't profess to be a Christian, but I am pretty sure that the Pope doesn't believe that, he seems as much of an atheist as I am, except he won't admit it.

robother said...

The Pope's power to excommunicate Christians has been limited for the last 500 years to Roman Catholics. However, his pronouncements do raise acutely the question (supposedly put to rest with JFK) of Rubio and Jeb's ability to enforce the borders in the face of the clear papal edict against such action.

tim in vermont said...

Speaking of linguistic faux pas:

two Democratic rivals had quietly narrowed from 23 points in December to a gut-rendering one point in a CNN/ORC poll released - Vanity Fair

What does "Gut rendering" mean? Don't they do that in slaughterhouses? Could they possibly mean "gut rending"? I think the idea that Hillary might lose has made them spring some kind of gear loose!

Steven said...

Trump seriously said, "No leader, especially a religious leader, should have the right to question another man’s religion or faith"?

What a moron.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jake said...

Isn't Vatican City surrounded by a giant wall?

n.n said...

The walls constructed around abortion offices and around public venues were designed to protect murderous choices, and make light of government corruption, respectively.

The border wall is designed to force leaders in second and third-world nations to address the causes of mass exodus from their societies, minority leaders of their fiefdoms in first-world societies, prevent disenfranchisement through anti-native policies, and expose the victims of the pro-choice cult's abortion rites.

averagejoe said...

This dingbat pope is going to get schlonged by Trump. Francis, meet Rosie O'Donnell...

Ken B said...

I see, aside from Althouse, a few defenders of the Pope here. When Wesdtboro baptists say someone is a bad christian, how do you react? When the Pope was told by the Liberal Prime Minister of Canada to butt out after he poked his nose in about gay marriage how did you react?If the Pope calls Hillary a bad Christian for supporting abortion, how will you react?

traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chuck said...

What a world! A part of the daily news cycle in which Donald Trump is actually made to look good.

Just think of what a doofus this Pope is, to make Donald J. Trump look good by comparison.

traditionalguy said...

The Faithful Catholic Jeb Bush's spokesperson just said Catholics are political, they always have been political and they always will be political. So while Evangelicals are snowed by Cruz and the always political Catholics want Bush or Rubio , all that is left for Trump is the providence of God. But the Trump Train is rolls on.


We are back into a 1948 era when Truman's Train gave them hell. He had to fight the GOP Wall Street Party of Dewey on the eas, and the Southern Dixiecrat Party of segregationists on the south, and the Socialist Party of Wallace on the west and the FDR New York elitists Democrats who looked down on Missouri Scots Irish Truman who abandoned him on the north.

But Truman won because the common men were loyal to a truthful Jacksonian fighter who was loyal to them. Which is why Trump will win.

lgv said...

I don't suppose the Pope could address why so many people are trying to flee Mexico for the evil capitalist USA. It's almost like he is being hypocritical.

Tank said...

I'll bet that the Pope and Trump would get along great if they met in person.

It would be Yuuuuuge.

Chuck said...

Anybody at the Presbyterian church in New York that Trump claims to have attended, would have been a lot more convincing than the Pope, in questioning Trump's Christianity.

Paul Snively said...

I thought about posting earlier that the Pope, of all Christians, should exercise the upmost care in judging whether anyone else is or is not a Christian. Mote, beam, and all that. One of the more worrisome aspects of this Pope's effect on the world has been, and continues to be, his mistaking of left-wing racial and economic politics for Catholic social ethics. This is just an example of how he is led astray.

Chuck said...

"Who am I to judge?"

The Left-wing blogosphere sure loved that line. Now, they likes them some judgment!

Dan Hossley said...

Trump is a little thin skinned. So are the Trumpettes.

Doug said...

It's "utmost ... UTMOST, DAMMIT"!@Paul Snively

LarsPorsena said...

Roughcoat said...
I'm a Catholic, and I tune the old coot out too.

When you're a Catholic you learn over the course of a lifetime to tune out the popes when they say nutty stuff. And not just the popes--the cardinals, bishops, your parish priest, the nuns, whomever. You tune them out and do your religion, your faith. The faith is bigger than all of them. They can't touch the Mystery of it. That's what you focus on.

2/18/16, 12:12 PM
--------------------------------------------------

Me too.

traditionalguy said...

FTR: a Calvinist Reformed Christian accepts by faith that he was chosen by God to be a son of God made righteous by Jesus' sacrifice of Himself once for all, and then live enjoying his inheritance in God's Kingdom by hard work and freedom to think for himself with his sins all paid for him by God's blood. He has no need to play confess, repent to a priest and be re-forgiven games hourly. As Trump would say, that game would be a waste of time better spent correcting any errors and doing things right.

Think of the example of prominent one Presbyterian named Thomas J. Jackson. He directed Infantry tactics in the Shenandoah Valley north of his hometown Lexington, Virginia. He only felt the need to repent when he was not killing invading Northern Armies fast enough. He did better the next times, directing the Army of Northern Virginia at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville where he definitely made the Northern Generals look incompetent.

Skeptical Voter said...

Foreigners -- and fir danged sure this Pope is a foreigner -- can butt out of US elections. Period. Punto finale. the Pope doesn't get a vote. Oh Obozo might let him in to cast an illegal alien vote.

But otherwise Francis can just put a sock in it. For guys like me -- and I don't even like Trump -- the Pope's attempted interference simply gives me a reason to vote for Trump. Well I'm not actually that stupid, but you can catch my drift. And there are a lot of voters out there who probably had the same reaction.

buster said...

I had hoped that an African would be elected rather than a Latin American. Then we would have that old-time religion.

Paddy O said...

"No leader, especially a religious leader, should have the right to question another man’s religion or faith"

I disagree with the Pope on whether this particular issue reflects genuine faith, but it does seem pretty clear that it's quite the right of the Pope to say who is and who is not a Christian.

For instance: Acts 5:1-11.

Religious leaders of all kinds have the right, maybe one of their most important responsibilities, to say who is and who is not a genuine follower. For Christians, this is called baptism (or confirmation if in traditions with infant baptism

I have no qualms about saying Trump is not a Christian in any meaningful way. Trump's statement assumes the secular ideology of radical privacy and personal nature of religion. Christianity does not hold to this.

I am more than happy to say that a number of Pope's themselves weren't Christian. Leo X, for instance. I also have no qualms about saying Trump is not a Christian in any meaningful way, though for reasons other than the wall statement.

And that's my right, right there.

As to the Wall, I don't know how it is Christian for a country to not take care of its poorest citizens but make them leave their homes to find insecure jobs in a place far from their families. Liberation theology developed because of the wealthy in Latin America despising and taking advantage of the poor, which is precisely what they are doing when they insist their poor must work in US, while at the same time the wealthy are reaping enormous financial benefits from the situation.

rcocean said...

"And Catholics when in power have successfully plotted to murder them for hundreds of years. The big problem the Catholics have had with Trump's Scots Presbyterians is that their faith gave them a clear head and the strength to fight back and win."

Christian Food fight! LOL.

American Christians had better heed the words of Agnostic Ben Franklin:

"We must all hang together Gentlemen - or assuredly we shall all hang separately".

AReasonableMan said...

Jake said...
Isn't Vatican City surrounded by a giant wall?

Built to keep muslims out.

traditionalguy said...

The Bishop of Rome does say Coptics are not Christians either. And the Coptics always say Peter is overrated by Rome. Alexandria was the real center of Early Christianity and the monastic movement. Augustine there also followed Pauline Christianity justification by faith.

Nor did the Orthodox Church from the Eastern Empire where the Council of Nicaea created the Creed of Christianity ever think Rome had any authority. All that crap comes from Constantine and Theodocian coopting Christianity into The Roman Empire's governance power.

The Bishop of Rome does not decide what is Christian. He decided who rules European mini Empires until The French Revolution worked out in Napoleon's day..

Marc Puckett said...

I'll wait to comment until I see a transcript of the press conference; the AP report Drudge cites e.g. includes text not included in the NYT piece AA links to. But on the basis of the video clip at the Times, so far as I can tell, the Pope is simply saying during the press conference what he has emphasized many times before: the reporter set up the question knowing that the Trump fellow's rhetoric, at least as it's commonly reported in Europe and the rest of the Americas (I have no idea what the man actually thinks or will do if, God forbid, anyone ever elects him to public office), anyway, would elicit some such response. Shrug. If his Holiness asked my advice, however, I'd tell him to stop doing in-flight press conferences.

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Howard Nelson said...

The Pope was not referring to Trump. Trump's wall has doorways for legal immigrants and serves as a bridge to refuge in freedom and opportunity.
For illegals, the doorways open only to the illegals' countries of origin, and is therefore also a bridge -- a bridge too far from the USA.

Writ Small said...

“A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian.”

Asked whether he would try to influence Catholics in how they vote in the presidential election, Francis said he “was not going to get involved in that. . . I say only that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that. We must see if he said things in that way and in this I give the benefit of the doubt.”

Asked about (Trump’s response), Francis laughed. “Thank God he said I was a politician because Aristotle defined the human person as ‘animal politicus,’ ” he said. “So at least I am a human person,” the pope said. “As to whether I am a pawn, well, maybe, I don’t know. I’ll leave that up to your judgment and that of the people.”


Aren't the Pope's comments uncontroversial? He describes what a Christian is not: a person who "ONLY" thinks about "walls" and "NOT" about "bridges." Is that a tough test to pass? Trump wouldn't be a Christian only if he met that extreme criteria. Francis even gives Trump the benefit of the doubt, presumably because he didn't hear from Trump directly and in context.

After later being personally attacked by Trump, the Pope responds with some humor and humility.

I am not a fan of the Pope's leftish economic tendencies (to state it mildly), but the outrage here seems more than a tad overwrought.

Nichevo said...

A Pink, and not too bright. Though maybe it's an act. Wait, are we talking about Pope Francis or Professor Althouse?

So Trump is not a Christian. Okay. I am not a Christian. I wonder how Pope Francis feels/thinks about Bernie Sanders.

Roger Sweeny said...

Lots of bridges have toll gates.

Big Mike said...

I'm so old I can remember when we used to ask "Is the Pope s Catholic" as a snarky way of saying "H*ll yes!" Today one can legitimately ask whether he's even a Christian.

Paddy O said...

"No leader, especially a religious leader, should have the right to question another man’s religion or faith"

Should have the right.

Should have the right.

If the Pope questioned my Christian status, I'd say I disagree with him. But he certainly has the right to do so.

Trump is an authoritarian. He doesn't just disagree, he says people shouldn't even have the right to their statements.

Trump is not a Christian. There, I said it, as is my right and, indeed, my responsibility.

Paddy O said...

I don't think a person needs to be a Christian to be President, though. But I do find Trump's protests about being a Christian to be yet another indication that he's primarily a panderer.

Michael K said...

Years ago, when I was still a practicing Catholic, the local parish asked me for money. I gave them a reasonable sum, expecting it to be used for our parish, which I was hoping would buy the land next door and which was zoned for church use. We needed a Catholic school and I was hoping this was a step toward that. The parish that I grew up in in Chicago, built the school first, before the church.

Later, I found out that the money went to Santa Ana for Mexican kids. The Catholic Church in this country has given up on the traditional Catholics and has spent most of its efforts on illegal aliens.

I told them no money money from me.

A local Episcopal priest built a private school in San Juan Capistrano and my kids all went there to school. Eventually a Catholic school was built in San Clemente and a high school where my two daughters went.

The Church has gone overboard on poor Mexicans.

Diamondhead said...


"FTR: a Calvinist Reformed Christian accepts by faith that he was chosen by God to be a son of God made righteous by Jesus' sacrifice of Himself once for all, and then live enjoying his inheritance in God's Kingdom by hard work and freedom to think for himself with his sins all paid for him by God's blood. He has no need to play confess, repent to a priest and be re-forgiven games hourly."

Haha, yeah THAT'S what Trump believes. Trump couldn't tell you what Calvinists believe if the prize was sleeping with one of the world's top women. I have little doubt he would also fail to know who Calvin was, or that his denomination used to be Calvinist. Again, if you listen to what Trump says, he has no need of a Savior because he doesn't believe in sin. Same as Obama. The pope was right for the wrong reason.

traditionalguy said...

But has sweet old Father Francis,the talking Jesuit, saved the atmosphere yet by destroying civilization using a known Big Lie that he vouches to be a true crisis of heat boiling the earth and flooding the coasts. Humbly sworn to be true by an oh so humble Big Liar.

The Church he runs could get super wealthy then just from charging fees for last rites as he actually so humbly helps freeze everybody to death from huge energy taxes and mega rates that have no effect at all on climate but unexpectedly create crony bilionaires while reducing surplus life that Mother Gaia hates.

traditionalguy said...

As for Diamond Head's certainty Trump cannot read theology, that is wishful thinking that Trump has shown no signs of at all. He absorbs information and sleeps 3 hours a day. He shows a couriosity of all things in the American traditions. And Calvinist Reform Christianity IS the American Tradition. It was also his mother's valued faith, and men like Trump care about whatever touched their mother's heart.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Fran thinks that just because he's a super nice guy that maybe he can increase the power of the church that way. Well, maybe he doesn't but I'm sure his supporters in the curia or college of cardinals do.

But those goals are not synonymous.

Sure a nice guy can head up the church but the church has never been about increasing charity in a generic way for simply its own sake.

I think the realities of global politics today are forcing him to reconsider how the church will achieve its goals. Watch for increased alliance building in all sorts of innovative ways.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Years ago, when I was still a practicing Catholic, the local parish asked me for money. I gave them a reasonable sum, expecting it to be used for our parish, which I was hoping would buy the land next door and which was zoned for church use. We needed a Catholic school and I was hoping this was a step toward that. The parish that I grew up in in Chicago, built the school first, before the church.

Later, I found out that the money went to Santa Ana for Mexican kids. The Catholic Church in this country has given up on the traditional Catholics and has spent most of its efforts on illegal aliens.

I told them no money money from me.

A local Episcopal priest built a private school in San Juan Capistrano and my kids all went there to school. Eventually a Catholic school was built in San Clemente and a high school where my two daughters went.

The Church has gone overboard on poor Mexicans.


Lol. The church has often been plagued by strange financial priorities. Poverty and power aren't exactly the most compatible goals.

Diamondhead said...

Why would I wish that he couldn't read theology? I wish he would. Of course he CAN, the problem is he doesn't. The wishful thinking here is yours, imagining him sitting around in the wee hours with a dog-eared copy of the Institutes. He cares about money, power, and sex. That is the exhaustive list of his concerns, and they keep him up all hours of the night.

The Cracker Emcee said...

I've never met a single American Catholic whose vote was swayed by anything the Pope said. Look, if they're so devout that their opinions are influenced by the Pope, then they're far too devout to vote for the baby-killers of the Democrat Party.

Fascinating how ostensibly sophisticated foreigners have such a poor understanding of America and American politics.

Nichevo said...

Cracker,

In the words of O'Brien,

Have you forgotten doublethink?

Sammy Finkelman said...

CarlF said...

Nehemiah 1:1-4, 2:1-5

וַיָּבֹא חֲנָנִי אֶחָד מֵאַחַי, הוּא וַאֲנָשִׁים--מִיהוּדָה; וָאֶשְׁאָלֵם עַל-הַיְּהוּדִים הַפְּלֵיטָה, אֲשֶׁר-נִשְׁאֲרוּ מִן-הַשֶּׁבִי--וְעַל-יְרוּשָׁלִָם. 2 that Hanani, one of my brethren, came out of Judah, he and certain men; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, that were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.

וַיֹּאמְרוּ, לִי--הַנִּשְׁאָרִים אֲשֶׁר-נִשְׁאֲרוּ מִן-הַשְּׁבִי שָׁם בַּמְּדִינָה, בְּרָעָה גְדֹלָה וּבְחֶרְפָּה; וְחוֹמַת יְרוּשָׁלִַם מְפֹרָצֶת, וּשְׁעָרֶיהָ נִצְּתוּ בָאֵשׁ. 3 And they said unto me: 'The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach; the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire.

...the wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been destroyed by fire.”

The Jews he is talking about is probably all Jews (the remnant is those Jews who remained from the destruction by Nebuchanezzar, and the Babylonian captivity. But this may be a wrong idea. Or maybe theer was some other capture.

These are the walls that were rebuilt early in the reign of Artaxerxes (Ezra 4:12)

http://www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt35a04.htm

יְדִיעַ, לֶהֱוֵא לְמַלְכָּא, דִּי יְהוּדָיֵא דִּי סְלִקוּ מִן-לְוָתָךְ, עֲלֶינָא אֲתוֹ לִירוּשְׁלֶם; קִרְיְתָא מָרָדְתָּא וּבִאישְׁתָּא, בָּנַיִן, ושורי אשכללו (וְשׁוּרַיָּא שַׁכְלִלוּ), וְאֻשַּׁיָּא יַחִיטוּ. 12 be it known unto the king, that the Jews that came up from thee are come to us unto Jerusalem; they are building the rebellious and the bad city, and have finished the walls, and are digging out the foundations.

Sammy Finkelman said...

This quote from Ezra is actually in Aramaic, not Hebrew. This is a quotation from a letter sent to Artaxerxes at the beginning of his reign. Ezra 4:6 and 4:7 are almost a translation.

The story is first written in Hebrew, then, when Ezra realizes he is going to quote a letter exactly, he switches to Aramaic. This proves that Ahasuerus and Artaxerxes are the same person, if you haven't figured it out already from your historical knowledge, but it is one of those things that people give other explanatons too - like they were two different people, even though Ezra says nothing further about the letter to Ahasuerus. You must understand what has come down to us is an exact copy of Ezra's manuscript, complete with all the false starts.

Sammy Finkelman said...

This report about the walls and the gates of Jerusalem being destroyed was possibly after what is called the revolt of Megabyzus.

This revolt happened after the massacre of the Jew haters that occured in the year following the downfall of Haman * (453 BCE) but may not be exactly related, the vast majority of the Jew haters, after all, except those in Egypt, having been killed. .

* The massacre of the Jew haters occured actually in 452 BCE, but in the Persian - and most world calendars - that still belonged to the old year, the year starting with the spring equinox, and there actually not being a fixed number of months to the year.

But Egyptians seemed to have something to do with that revolt

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megabyzus

Some time later Megabyzus himself revolted. Ctesias tells us the reason was that Amestris had the captives from the Egyptian revolt executed, though Megabyzus had given his word that they would not be harmed. Armies under Usiris of Egypt and then prince Menostanes, a nephew of the king, were sent against him, both foregoing battle for (non-fatal) duels between the generals, and in both cases Megabyzus was victorious.

This says that this occured after the peace of Callias.

That occurred in 450-449 BCE, when (I conclude) Mordechai made a secret peace agreement with Greece. As part of that agreement, a lot of money was paid to Athens, which was used to rebuild the Acropolis and build the Parthenon. Part of the idea was to keep the Greeks busy. A statue of Athena was built and put in the Parthenon, but it and the temple was not used for idol worship - a condition laid down by Mordechai. If Athens had violated that, the money would have stopped coming in. The money was used by Pericles to entrench himself in power. He had to do some skillful lying and concealment.

Unfortunately, maybe, all these details were stricken from the book of Esther, and it abruptly concludes just with the statement that Mordechai sought peace (specifically for all his seed) and an invitation to consult the official Persian archives.

Joe said...

Once again, the Pope's ignorance of his own religion and Christianity in general surprises me.

(If anything, Jesus was burning bridges, not building them.)

Sammy Finkelman said...

Amestris, mentioned above, was the king's mother. There had been a sort of prime minister, and he had killed the king (Xerxes) in 465 BCE.

Then he went to the king's third son whom he thought was a sort of pliable character, not interested in the details of governance, and persuaded him that the king's oldest son had been responsible and got his agreement to have the oldest son executed.

The third son was Artaxerxes. It got discovered that the accusation but only after the execution was carried out. Then the king's second son, who had the satrapy of Bactria (covering roughly Afghanistan) laid a claim to the throne, but Artaxerxes had already claimed the throne, wanted to hold on to it or at least not to get executed himself!

It took till the third year of reign till he was established, at which point he made a big feast for all the inhabitants of Susa. (Shushan in Bible English)

Rhythm and Balls said...

Once again, the Pope's ignorance of his own religion and Christianity in general surprises me.

(If anything, Jesus was burning bridges, not building them.)


That's the paradox of the Vatican. Replacing the powerful office of the old Roman emperor but trying to do so on a philosophy of ultimate humility.

It's a tricky balance. In the past it was accomplished by doing away with the pretense of always seeking to match word with deed. Power corrupts and religion proposes purity. Whadaya gonna do?

Sammy Finkelman said...

Going back, or maybe forward, the decree of Haman had been issued in 453 BCE (12th year of Artaxerxes)

Haman had bribed Sparta to make war. Mordechai found more peaceful (and effective!) ways to handle things.

The incident Nehemiah relates here (what follows) took place in 445 BCE. The revolt of Megabyzus was in between 449 and 445 BCE. The twentieth year of King Artaxerxes corresponds to 445 BCE. There is a question here, though, when does the regnal year egin, at least according to Nehemiah. Because if it begins in Nisan, it's got to be the next year. He has Kislev and Nisan (the Nisan following Kislev, four or maybe five months later) occuring in the same year? Is he starting the year with Tishrei? Or did Nehemiah make a mistake?

Anyway, it goes: (as qupted by KarlF)

"...In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was served him, I carried the wine and gave it to the king. Now, I had never been sad in his presence before. So the king said to me, “Why is your face sad, since you are not sick? This can only be sadness of the heart.” Then I was very much afraid. I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not be sad, when the city, the place of my ancestors’ graves, lies waste, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?” Then the king said to me, “What do you request?” So I prayed to the God of heaven. Then I said to the king, “If it pleases the king, and if your servant has found favor with you, I ask that you send me to Judah, to the city of my ancestors’ graves, so that I may rebuild it.”

And then he mentions a fact he left out: "the "Shegal" - which is word that means something like female companion and covers different degrees of recognition" was sitting next to him. Nehemiah needs to explain why he thinks artaxerxes agreed. The word "Shegal" is sometimes translated here as Queen.

http://www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt35b02.htm

וַיֹּאמֶר לִי הַמֶּלֶךְ וְהַשֵּׁגַל יוֹשֶׁבֶת אֶצְלוֹ, עַד-מָתַי יִהְיֶה מַהֲלָכְךָ--וּמָתַי תָּשׁוּב; וַיִּיטַב לִפְנֵי-הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיִּשְׁלָחֵנִי, וָאֶתְּנָה לוֹ זְמָן. 6 And the king said unto me, the queen also sitting by him: 'For how long shall thy journey be? and when wilt thou return?' So it pleased the king to send me; and I set him a time.

See? Nehemiah adds this about the woman sitting next to the king right in the middle of a sentence.

This is a reference to Esther, but for various reasons, nobody says that.

Notice he doesn't ask for the temple to be rebuilt, because Artaxerxes had already forbidden it. He only asks for the situation to be restored to what it was shortly before.

http://www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt35a04.htm

כא כְּעַן שִׂימוּ טְּעֵם, לְבַטָּלָא גֻּבְרַיָּא אִלֵּךְ; וְקִרְיְתָא דָךְ לָא תִתְבְּנֵא, עַד-מִנִּי טַעְמָא יִתְּשָׂם. 21 Make ye now a decree to cause these men to cease, and that this city be not builded, until a decree shall be made by me.

The escape clause is there because Ataxerxes was a stickler for the rule tghat a decree of the king could not be overturned (even by another king) That was a rule laid down by the grandfater of Cyrus the Great (Astyages) as a precaution against assasination.

What I said all checks out to the extent you can check it out.

There is a problem with generally accepted Jewish history, with the way it's been put together, probablky dating from after the destruction of the second temple (Rabbo scwab even thought they did it on purpose) and with the the non-Jews it started around 1420 in Germany when they decided to dispute the authenticity of the book of Esther at a time when nothing else was disputed - and there are no miracles in it, and it has been ripped out of its proper historical setting. Crazy things have been said, like that Ahasuerus is Xerxes, when the simplest perusal of the sources and earlier writings indicate he is identical with Artaxerxes.

Sammy Finkelman said...

The Pope could talk about Sodom, but he can't, because they have adoifferent udnerstanding of what was wrong with Sodom than Jews.

The Godfather said...

The Pope's statement (assuming it was correctly reported) that "A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian" reflects an error frequently made by Christians in commenting about public policy. Jesus' teachings, and those of the early Christian evangelists in the New Testament, have to do with personal morality, not public policy (not surprisingly: The people Jesus preached to were entirely without political power). So teachings like "If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles" or "If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them" apply to us as individuals. But they were not intended as teachings about what governments should do. Should the US Government have turned the other cheek when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor? Should the US Government have gone the extra mile and turned the Philipines over to Japan, a shirt in addition to the coat?

As individuals, we are enjoined to be charitable, to welcome the stranger, to give out of our abundence to those who have little. But if a government is charitable, the charity is paid for with other people's money. If the government welcomes unlimited numbers of foreigners looking for a better life and willing to work for bracero wages, the government will be taking jobs away from American workers who are at the bottom of the wage and skills pyramid. If the government welcomes indigent foreigners and makes them eligible for welfare and food stamps, it's American taxpayers who will pay for those benefits.

And if America takes in the poor and unemployed from politically and economically backward countries, isn't there a risk that by so doing we interfere with the possibility of reforms in those countries that would, if successful, benefit many more people than those that, under any policy, might be able to escape to a better life in the US?

I don't support Tromp, and I'm agnostic about "the wall", but Pope Francis, in this instance at least, seems to be a holy fool.

Paul said...

Now hold on folks. The Pope 's own words did not prohibit making a wall. He admonished people who think ONLY of building a wall.

With that being said, his Holyness should still have kept his nose out of politics.

Laura said...

No wonder "A Mighty Fortress" got the papacy all riled up. Plus those verses about Jesus and swords and dividing families.

His Holiness must learn to live in a soundbite world if he is to chasten Mr. Trump.

Laura said...

Are there no immigrants to be named Joshua who play the trumpet?

Phil D said...

"CHAP. 18.--FAITH WITHOUT GOOD WORKS IS NOT SUFFICIENT FOR SALVATION.
Unintelligent persons, however, with regard to the apostle's statement: "We conclude that a man is justified by faith without the works of the law," have thought him to mean that faith suffices to a man, even if he lead a bad life, and has no good works ..."
Augustine of Hippo
(from: "Did St. Augustine Teach Sola Fide?" (lot more at the link)

From the same link, Luther on Augustine;
"Augustine has sometimes erred and is not to be trusted. Although good and holy, he was yet lacking in the true faith, as well as the other fathers...But when the door was [sic] opended for me in Paul, so that I understood what justification by faith is, it was all over with Augustine. (Luther's Works 54, 49)"

This in answer to traditionalMoron's peculiar sense of history and historical figures.

Rick said...

I'm not religious so I don't care what the pope says (nor do I think do most Catholics, and I have some knowledge here as I married one).

But I am subjected to American media so I'm curious about their acceptance of this direct interference in American politics by a foreign pope considering they lose their minds whenever such interferences contradict the left wing narrative.

traditionalguy said...

Nehemiah for President. He was a warrior Builder, like someone else we know. And he took plenty of "incoming" from Arabs and Philistines and disloyal Jews, many whom were not natural born in Jerusalem.and feared a Wall would create a Jewish State.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Extremely presumptuous of the pope to judge Trump's faith like that.

William Chadwick said...

Given this pope's fatuous pronuciamentoes on economics and other subjects, it's almost an honor for Trump to be criticized by such a lamebrain.