Villagers in Papua New Guinea have killed fugitive cult leader Steven Tari — who referred to himself as ‘Black Jesus’ — and one of his followers, after they were caught attacking a young woman.
Sentenced to up to 10 years in prison, he escaped last March along with 48 other prisoners.
Tari claimed to be King Yali, a reincarnation of God Yali, the deceased leader of the Yali Movement. A failed Lutheran pastor, he also said he was the Messiah.
Syria in Prophecy?
Some evangelicals — which a TIME magazine article equates with ‘fundamentalist Christians‘ — apparently view the escalating violence in Syria as leading up to the fulfillment of a prophecy in the Biblical book of Isaiah which, in Chapter 17:1, says, “A prophecy against Damascus:
“See, Damascus will no longer be a city but will become a heap of ruins.”
According to TIME “nearly all Biblical scholars argue that such a literalist interpretation of the text is highly problematic.” The article quotes just one scholar, who opines that the interpretation of Isaiah 17 as a reference to the current conflict is absurd.
By the way, Evangelicals actually come in many flavors, since Evangelicalism is a rather diverse movement. And many, if not most, of them pay no attention to the kind of blogs the article cites — precisely because most of those blogs are, well, absurd.
Bob Larson’s Teenage Exorcists
Bob Larson is an ‘evangelist’ and — reportedly using mail order credentials — ‘reverend’ who markets himself as “the world’s foremost expert on cults, the occult, and supernatural phenomena.”
But he is good at marketing his business — most recently via the use of his team of “Teenage Exorcists.”
On September 12, BBC Three will air The Teenage Exorcists, a documentary by Filmmaker Dan Murdock.
unpicks the intensely theatrical nature of exorcism alongside delving into the personal lives of the three girls; an exploration which leads to a fascinating final question — are these girls truly miracle-workers or simply shameless frauds?
Jehovah’s Witnesses Changing Doctrines — Again
The doctrines of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania — the legal entity behind Jehovah’s Witnesses are changing again.
The group has a so-called Governing Body which, among other things, is responsible for formulating policy and doctrines.
Well, this doctrine, of the Faithful and Discreet Slave, has undergone many interpretations and changes over the years.
And it is about the change again — drastically — as reflected in the articles discussed in the July 15, 2013 Study Edition of the organization’s Watchtower magazine.
- See: The Changing World of Mormonism ↩
- This reference leads to the New International Version of the Bible. Note that Jehovah’s Witnesses came up with their own, controversial ‘translation’ — the New World Translation in an attempt to support the organization’s unbiblical doctrines. ↩
- “New Light” is a euphemism for alleged ‘new revelation.’ ↩