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I have a Ph.D. in Optical Sciences. I sometimes go by "Doc." I am a fan of Doctor Who.

  • Was Jesus using irony in Luke 15:7?

    We are familiar with the parable of the ninety and nine left in the fold while the Shepard went looking for the lost sheep. We are perhaps less familiar with the fact that the Savior gave this parable to the scribes and Pharisees who criticized him for associating with publicans and sinners. We know from other scriptures that the Lord was highly critical of the scribes and Pharisees who thought they were righteous but were not.

    In verse 7 of Luke chapter 15 we read in the KJV “I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.” Who are the ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance? Certainly not the scribes and Pharisees, although they thought this of themselves. Every one of us in fact is in need of repentance and are as lost sheep needing the Good Shepard to rescue them.

    Many commentators on this parable have concluded that Jesus actually meant the opposite of what he said when he called the Pharisees and scribes just persons who need no repentance, and he did it deliberately as a subtle way of rebuking his hearers. So, my question is this, what do you call this form of teaching of Jesus Christ where you say one thing and mean the opposite? Sarcasm, irony, teasing, mocking, tongue in check, or arguing in bad faith?

    10 AnswersReligion & Spirituality2 years ago
  • How should sexual assualt be defined?

    According to the U.S. government Office of Women’s Health (https://www.womenshealth.gov/relationships-and-saf... the term “Sexual Assault” includes non-consensual sexual activity by physical contact, as you might expect, but “can also be verbal, visual, or non-contact.” Examples include voyeurism, exhibitionism, or sending some unwanted texts or “sexts.” It includes sexual harassment.

    Sexual harassment in turn is officially defined by the Office of Women’s Health to include behavior such as making comments about your clothing, body, behavior, or romantic relationships. Making sexual jokes or comments, whistling or catcalling. Spreading rumors about your personal or sexual life.

    I like the way this understanding of sexual assault emphasis that sexual assault is not just sexual physical contact. It places the blame on the perpetrator even though the perpetrator may be blissfully unaware that his sexual jokes, comments, body exposure, or whistles may be harmful to his victims, who are never at fault. And it is not up to the perpetrator to determine if his conduct is within the appropriate social norms, traditions, or customs for the time and place. It is solely how the victim perceives his behavior as being unwanted and sexual in nature. My question is, what do you like or dislike about the Office of Women’s Health’s definition of “sexual assault?” Is it useful?

    3 AnswersLaw & Ethics2 years ago
  • Does the worship of the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar set up have a modern parallel?

    Nebuchadnezzar set up a golden image and demanded that when the music was played everyone must fall down and worship the image. Today, a baker is commanded by the state to decorate a cake to support the worship of what he may believe is an immoral mockery of the true sacrament of marriage.

    4 AnswersReligion & Spirituality5 years ago
  • What is the value of ancestry DNA tests?

    For example, my 4th great grandfather had a mother who was a Mohawk Indian, and a father who was half-Mohawk. At least according to family tradition. Since he is male, mitochondrial DNA testing will tell me nothing about him, and since there are females in the direct line between him and me Y-chromosome DNA testing will also not trace back to him. Will autosomal DNA testing likely show a Native American ancestry or is the connection too remote? If I know by genealogical research that for at least the last 8 generations my ancestors came from Germany, England, and Ireland, what useful information could I learn about my ancestry through DNA testing?

    4 AnswersGenealogy7 years ago
  • Do women want to be admired as much as men want to be admired?

    It is said that what a man most wants is to be admired by the woman he loves. What a woman most wants is to be loved by the man she admires. But does a woman also want to be admired? Is her need to be admired as great as a man's need? What does she want to be admired for and is that any different from what a man wants to be admired for?

    5 AnswersGender Studies7 years ago
  • Is a woman safe late at night alone in a high crime area of town?

    It is sometimes asserted that a woman is just as likely to be raped by a stranger in the middle of the day while walking down the street in an expensive shopping district with a group of her friends as she is when alone late at night in a high crime district. While the intent of this assertion is to help her feel that her choices did not contribute to her being raped, is the statement actually true? Is there any statistical evidence to support or contradict the statement?

    2 AnswersOther - Society & Culture7 years ago
  • What are negative experiences with men?

    Obviously if you have been beat up, robbed, raped, or deeply humiliated by a man you have had a really, really negative experience. But some may consider a man forgetting something important, like the date when you first met, as a really, really negative experience. Perhaps you thought he was dating only you and you later learned otherwise, Perhaps he bought you expensive gifts in what may have been a desire to buy your affections. What are some less serious experiences you have had with men which you still consider really, really negative.

    Men, feel free to describe similar experiences you might have had with women.

    6 AnswersGender Studies7 years ago
  • Why did Jesus submit to baptism?

    What were his reasons for being baptized? Was he not holy?

    15 AnswersReligion & Spirituality7 years ago
  • Was the penalty for a false prophecy death?

    Were the prophets that followed Moses all under the penalty of death for one false prophecy made?

    3 AnswersReligion & Spirituality7 years ago
  • Did the miracles Jesus performed authenticate him as the Christ?

    Do the signs and wonders of Jesus convince us that we must accept him as the Son of God, or do these miracles confirm the belief we already have?

    8 AnswersReligion & Spirituality7 years ago
  • Does the Bible contain all God wants us to know?

    Why do you think the way you do?

    11 AnswersReligion & Spirituality7 years ago
  • What could we do if we had great faith?

    Peter walked on water, but because he had only a little faith he began to sink and called to Jesus to save him. (Matthew 14:13)

    Consider what even a tiny bit of faith could do: "And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you." (Luke 17:6)

    Or this: "And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you." (Matthew 17:20)

    Actually, I do think some things are impossible, even with great faith. I don't think we can violate somone's agency, or overthrow the works of God. But if we had great faith, what is the greatest thing you can think of that we could do?

    Think big.

    7 AnswersReligion & Spirituality7 years ago
  • How do you deal with people who will only listen to those who agree with them?

    I find over and over again that some people, who are opposed to a particular religion, or religion in general, will seek out internet sites that agree with them. They will believe everything that site says, and will not believe anything that comes from persons or sites that support the religion. This is also true in politics. Those on the left summarily dismiss anything coming from Rush Limbaugh or a conservative site, without thinking about it at all. Those on the right may totally ignore what President Obama says as completely untrustworthy.

    Does this mean we are all hopelessly doomed to become ever more polarized, ingrained in our own beliefs, destined to resist any change in our thinking?

    9 AnswersReligion & Spirituality8 years ago
  • Who has and who will see God?

    There is a verse in the Bible that says "No man hath seen God at any time" (John 1:18). Yet there are at least twenty more that disagree with that verse. Is the one wrong and all the others right, or the one is right and all the others wrong? Even if you find more scriptures to support the idea that man cannot see God, why do some scriptures contradict that statement?

    I have seen God face to face, Gen. 32:30

    Moses … was afraid to look upon God, Ex. 3:6

    Lord will come down in the sight of all the people, Ex. 19:11

    charge the people, lest they break through unto the Lord to gaze, Ex. 19:21

    nobles of the children of Israel … saw God, Ex. 24:11

    Lord spake unto Moses face to face, Ex. 33:11

    With him will I speak mouth to mouth, Num. 12:8

    Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, Deut. 34:10

    We shall surely die, because we have seen God, Judg. 13:22

    Lord … had appeared unto him twice, 1 Kgs. 11:9

    in my flesh shall I see God, Job 19:26

    mine eyes have seen … the Lord, Isa. 6:5

    Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God, Matt. 5:8.

    Father … to whomsoever the Son will reveal him, Matt. 11:27

    I will love him, and will manifest myself to him, John 14:21

    I see … the Son of man standing on the right hand, Acts 7:56

    holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord, Heb. 12:14

    we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is, 1 Jn. 3:2

    when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead, Rev. 1:17

    they shall see his face, Rev. 22:4

    9 AnswersReligion & Spirituality8 years ago
  • Your spouse or your child?

    I've heard that if a man has to choose to save the life of either is wife or his child, he will choose to save the life of his wife. A woman, on the other hand, will choose to save the life of her child and let her husband die, if it has to be one or the other. Is this true, and if so, why are men and women different in this regard?

    12 AnswersGender Studies8 years ago
  • Do we know our own faults?

    The other day I heard someone say that everyone knows his own faults, so there is no need to point them out. I can see that it might not be a good idea to criticize another person, but is it true that we all know exactly what our own faults are? This is a three part question:

    (1) Do you think that other people really know their own faults?

    (2) Is it likely that you have serious faults that you are unaware of?

    (3) Do you feel that other people find fault with you and they are mistaken?

    10 AnswersReligion & Spirituality8 years ago