Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Anglicans Preach Against Yet Another of the 10 Commandments: But This Time it is Not About Sex (Surprise!)

From the land of jolly old England comes this story of an Anglican priest who advocated shoplifting in his sermon last week. Yes, you read that right: shoplifting.

The Times online has the story:

"The Ten Commandments include a fairly straightforward instruction: Thou shalt not steal. Now a Yorkshire vicar has come up with an interesting interpretation, advising the more hard-pressed of his parishioners to shoplift.

They should do it only from big shops, the Rev Tim Jones said, and it would probably be best if they did not take any more than they needed. Inevitably, some less spiritually enlightened individuals, including North Yorkshire Police, have taken his remarks in entirely the wrong way, assuming that by advising people to shoplift he is in some way encouraging shoplifting.

Father Tim’s remarks came in his Sunday sermon at the Church of St Lawrence, York, when he said that stealing from large national chains was sometimes the best option open to vulnerable people. It was far better for people desperate during the recession to shoplift than to turn to prostitution, mugging or burglary, he said.

“My advice, as a Christian priest, is to shoplift"
Well, at least there is a man who takes his religion seriously and acts on it consistently - by which I refer of course to his Marxism.

Just when you think you have heard it all from the Anglicans, they find new ways to plumb the depths of cutting-edge, culturally-relevant, creative ways to relate to the culture.

But Father Tim's creative exegesis was a bit too much even for the Times, so we awoke to find this article in today's edition byJulian Baggini entitled "Sorry, Father, thou shall not steal." Baggini is editor of "The Philosopher's Magazine." It is getting pretty desperate when the philosophers have to start correcting the clergy on basic points of morality. What is next? Prostitutes giving advice on how to build a strong marriage? Peter Singer explaining why humans are special? City of London bankers lecturing us on being risk adverse?

While Father Tim gets points for honesty, I'm afraid his exegesis fails the laugh test.


Stephen said...

It's unbelievable that anyone would challenge the Mosaic law! Anyone who challenges the law should be crucified. Wait, that happened once already.

Craig Carter said...

"I have not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill it." Matt. 5:17

"Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven." Matt. 5:19

Jesus never challenged the Mosaic Law, only the scribal traditions and their legalistic interpretation of it. Preaching the breaking of the 10 Commandments to make a political point is not something justifiable by appealing to Jesus.