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Monday, December 05, 2005

Der Bibelkalender (nude calendar)

So there's this fascinating article of a German church youth group that is doing a fundraiser by selling calendars depicting erotic scenes from the Bible.

One 21 year old woman, who poses as the prostitute Rahab, says this: "Anyway, it doesn't say anywhere in the Bible that you are forbidden to show yourself nude."

Interesting logic. It doesn't say anywhere in the Bible that you are forbidden from looking at or pandering child pornography but I'm pretty sure that is sinful.

One other interesting perspective on her statement: notice the self centered focus — ".... you are forbidden to show yourself nude." But what about loving your neighbor as yourself? Does showing yourself nude break the law of loving your neighbor? I suppose if you showed yourself nude often enough you might really end up loving your neighbor on a regular basis but that's a little different.

What if showing yourself nude to your neighbor causes them to lust? Of course I wouldn't have that problem. If I showed myself nude to my neighbors it would scare the crap out of them and they would run away traumatized and in fear. Some do that when I have my clothes on!

So certainly you don't want to cause someone to lust. And you don't want to break porn laws. You do want to love your neighbor. When evaluating any of your own behavior it must be measured against the law of loving your neighbor and God. And you must examine your own motives.

But I wonder, can you show yourself nude and not sin? Is there a place in this world for nudity in art that celebrates God's creation of the human body. Can nudity ever be used in video (movies, television, etc.) for artistic purposes.

When I go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to see my friend who works there and I see the Rodin sculptures or I see paintings by my favorite artist William Bouguereau, I'm enthralled by them but not consumed with lust. The beauty is wonderful, even majestic. But it's really not sexual or at least in my limited perception of myself, I don't feel sexually charged in some way after I have viewed them.

One person told me that the difference between art and porn is whether the nude person in the picture is looking at you or not. An art professor in college said that the difference between nude and naked was this: nude is art but naked is vulnerable to being penetrated.

I'm just not sure that all nudity is bad and must be forbidden.

On the other hand, even if you took a more liberal approach to this topic, wouldn't you be bothered if some youth group kid was masturbating to a calendar that the CHURCH sold him or her? Some how that would bother me. Regardless of your view on masturbation, objectifying the person in the picture and lusting after him/her is neither healthy nor right.

Well, I've put enough scary words in this post that it's probably not making it past most of your porn filters so no one is really reading this. But if you are reading this, I encourage you to think about your own life for a moment. Are you loving your neighbor and God to the best of your ability? I think you will feel better about yourself if you work diligently in doing that in all your actions. God bless you. I'll work on it too.

Comments on "Der Bibelkalender (nude calendar)"


Blogger Luke said ... (3:35 PM, December 07, 2005) : 


Yeah, some of us struggle past the filters when we see something from you.

Your post reminded me of a video game currently being hyped to increase sales in the Christmas season. I believe it is called, “Gun”. The ads flash images of theft of a cross, among others, while saying “greed, lust, stealing, murder – they aren’t against the law, when there is no law!” It appears the sellers believe parents will think that the perfect way to celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace is to encourage their tykes to vicariously participate in rape, murder, robbery, etc. Further, they expect parents to buy in to the idea that you can engage in these things without conscience pangs, because the existence of laws is what determines right and wrong. Suspend laws, and you are freed of conscience, and then you can justify any behavior, no matter how appalling and morally corrupt.


This isn't just un-Christian. It is unacceptable even in an irreligious society. Even athiests would find it appalling.

IF they thought it through... instead of putting it under a Christmas tree.

Merry Christmas.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:57 AM, December 08, 2005) : 

We should not be loving others "to the best of our abilities". We need to release the Father's love that has been shed abroad in our hearts by His Holy Spirit, to effect the lives of those we come into contact with. Thank God we are not left to our own abilities to love but we can rely on the one who is Love to assist us. When we are not able - He remains faithful.
I enjoy your blogging - carry on...


Blogger theultrarev said ... (11:50 AM, December 08, 2005) : 

Thank you for your thoughtful comments. I'm thinking we might be thinking the same thing but you may have said it better.

I suggest "We need to release the Father's love that has been shed abroad in our hearts by His Holy Spirit, to effect the lives of those we come into contact with, ..." to the best of our abilities.

And the question remains, can we do any of what that might mean while we are nude in front of them either in print or, God forbid, in body. At least in print I have the distant possibility of Photoshop making me look good.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:40 AM, December 09, 2005) : 

Perhaps this a futile case of word semantics, but the basis of my first comment was built on the communication you made that we are left to our own ability in the realm of loving others. I'm convinced that if this is what it will take (our own ability) then we are in deep dung. Only by surrendering to the current of the Father's River of Life are we in position to be a conduit of His love.The key here is not ability,but availability. "The best of our ability" will always have us coming up short.

Great blogging site by the way....


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