As I hope you know, I try to keep my personal politics out of the blog.  I also hope I succeed, but some of you may think not…  But I do try.    It’s not that I do not have strong political convictions.  On the contrary, I am passionately political and will go to the mat for my views.   BUT, I want the blog to be open and welcoming to all people, whatever their political views (or religious views or any other kinds of views).  We can all be interested in early Christianity, and our politics don’t need to enter into it.

And unlike most of the people I know who have strong political views, I really do try to see “the other side,” and to realize that there are very, very good people with views different from mine.   Also unlike most people, I often appreciate and get a very good laugh out of jokes poked at views that I actually take very seriously.  But it’s always good to laugh, even at ourselves.

I say that as a preface to this request for humorous suggestions – or serious ones, if you prefer – about how to construe the number of the beast, 666.   As many of you noticed, I received a rather naughty suggestion last week, and I was even naughtier for posting it.  But it was too good to turn down.  It simply said:

F: 6th letter = 6
O: 15th letter = 1+5 = 6
X: 24th letter = 2+4 = 6
So I guess Fox News is Antichrist’s own Network !

Ha!  I think that’s a good one.   Here’s another one.  My students who take my Introduction to the New Testament course sometimes tell me that they don’t think it’s an accident that the phone number for the Department of Religious Studies at UNC  — famous (or infamous) for teaching historical and philosophical views that many students find challenging – is 962-5666.   What does that say about our nefarious existence as a department?!?  🙂

So, I’m interest in any humorous (or serious, OK!) suggestions about 666.  When I was teaching at Rutgers in the mid-80s, some liberal democrats suggested that it was not by chance that the president at the time had six letters in each of his three names, Ronald Wilson Reagan, 6-6-6,!  My students tended to be Republican, but they thought that was pretty funny.

So, do you have any good ones?  Let us know.  All political and religious positions are welcome, so long as they are not abusive and meant to harm anyone.  Those that are, I won’t post.

And I make this request realizing that it may end up being a big mistake!!!   But it may be good!  We’ll see.