Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why don’t you have more women/minorities/non-English speakers?

A: Send me links! I still have about 1380 more devotions to write! I have purposely sought out racial and national diversity, and so far, African -Americans have been the easiest to include (I think I have about five sources now). I have intentionally sought out sources from the Reformation, which ended up with many Europeans. I have chosen to concentrate on items from the public domain.

Q: What’s wrong with a metaphor?

A: Scripture is full of them. Jesus used them. A metaphor can of course convey — it can greatly improve the conveyance of — edifying spiritual or ethical meaning. I must not portray any problem with using metaphors. However, there is something to the idea of people using references to dangers they or their people have actually encountered. Someone from the flat country using “avalanche of woe” might not make for as interesting reading as the story of people who lived through a real one. City people using “vultures of remorse” may not be as interesting as the story of missionary who saw real vultures feasting the executed from his hut. You can still take your metaphorical meanings from these lived accounts. But I think there more spiritual resonance, more fun, in reading the real stories.

The whole point for bringing this up is that I may pass over, in some cases, several hundred, spiritually edifying uses of a word which are mere abstract metaphors in favor of one obtuse reference, a reference which involves real people really suffering.

Q: I’m a scholar of Pastor X and you missed this quote which is even more profound.

A: There could be a number of reasons for this. The most likely is there might not be a publicly available version of the writing you found in a text-searchable format. Second, I may have stumbled across a quote from someone else that struck my fancy before I got to that one.

Q: Do you think you can, with a few seconds of computer seerches, find an extended quote from my theological hero, one that contradicts the worldview of scholars who’ve devoted their careers to understanding his or her writing?

A: Yes. This is sort of a new vernacular, except it’s unlocking the heat writings of Christian pastors.