May 31, 2005

Does Western Christendom Still Believe in God?

{This is a repost of one of my favorite posts at the old place. I'm gradually moving the best stuff over here -- eventually, I'll have everything in it's proper chronological order, but I want to put these first so that new readers can enjoy these "historic" posts. This is originally from November 21, 2004}

I need to define my terms first, because I'm using the word 'Christendom' in a different way than I usually do. I'm going to use Christendom to describe Western society in general, assuming (I think correctly) that much of Western culture, especially it's morality, is rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

I started thinking about this topic on Thursday in my Intro to Philosophy class, as we discussed Nietzsche's The Madman and it's claim that God is dead. I'll start by letting the text speak for itself:
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May 30, 2005

What IS Fundamentalism?

I'm reposting this from several posts I made on the old blog. I'm not reposting the whole thing -- just some parts, so you might want to head over there and read the full posts I made a little over a year ago. I just finished reading this piece by Frank Schaeffer. I like Frank -- I've read his books about his son in the Marines (Keepin Faith and Faith of Our Sons) and enjoyed them immensely. I've read his father's works, and been blessed by them. But I'm not sure that Frank "gets Fundamentalism" as well as he thinks he does. What is needed is a good definition of what fundamentalism is, and what it isn't. more...

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Judge Tells Parents what Religion to Teach

Ok, now I may be in disagreement with everyone who reads this blog on this issue. But that's never stopped me from shooting off my mouth before.

A judge in Indianapolis has decreed that a set of divorced parents can't teach their kid their religion. Because that religion is Wicca.

I disagree with pretty much everything Wicca teaches. I think they are totally wrong, and deceived, concerning the nature of the supernatural world. I sometimes wish that Christians had as much of an appreciation for the spiritual forces that are out there, though -- we tend to separate things into "God did it" and "Not real at all" and reject the whole "Satan did it" category out of hand. But I don't believe that everything supernatural is essentially good, or should be harnessed.

BUT -- last time I checked, the Constitution prohibited government interference in religion, including the religious instruction of children by their parents. As far as I can tell, the parents are in agreement about the religious training that their kids should have -- it may be the only thing they agree on, I don't know. The judge has prohibited the teaching of "non-mainstream religious beliefs and rituals." No definition of what "mainstream religious beliefs and rituals" actually ARE.

THAT'S a problem area. Evangelicalism is often considered non-mainstream. So the parents can't teach their kids evangelical Christianity? Never says that specifically, but it could be interpreted that way.

I hate to use the phrase "slippery slope" here, but it seems to fit. A dangerous precident has been established if this decision holds up. The government, or at least a representative of the government, is dictating to parents what type of religious training and education that their child can have. That is simply wrong.

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May 28, 2005

New Feature

Yes, I have succumbed. If you haven't noticed yet, there is a flickr box on the right sidebar. Right now, you can see pictures of my daughter's first dance recital, my daughter and me playing the guitar together, and my wife and daughter on the way to this year's prom (we chaperoned).

You won't see many shots of me, because I take most of the pictures. You WILL see lots of pictures of my daughter, because ... I take most of the pictures.

I'll add to it as I feel inclined.

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May 27, 2005

How then shall we Blog?

This is one of those posts that is hard to categorize, so I've dumped it into everything else. It's a little bit Intolerant Tolerance, but it's also a little bit Theology, but it doesn't really fit into those categories at all.

A bunch of us from Mind and Media have joined Blogcritics. Seems to be a perfect fit -- they review books, so do we. Match made in Heaven, right?
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May 26, 2005

Is the Reformation Over?

Mark Noll has co-written a new book with Carolyn Nystrom called Is the Reformation Over? An Evangelical Asessment of Contemporary Roman Catholicism that attempts to answer just this question. I just found out that the book is scheduled to be out in July, and it's on my reading list (now WAY too long).
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Blogroll Cruise: 5/26/2005

This is my very first Blogroll Cruise at the new site. So let's get started!! For those who aren't familiar, this is just a look at posts that have caught my attention while surfing through my blogroll. I do this every so often, supposedly as a service to my readers, but actually because I can't think of anything original to write ... more...

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May 25, 2005

Pagan Roots?

I'm writing this in response to some reactions to my review of James White's The King James Only Controversy over at Blogcritics. Most of the comments on the review have little to do with the actual subject of the book (the controversy over modern translations of the Bible), but rather toiuch on the roots of Christianity itself. more...

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May 24, 2005

One Year Ago Today ...

I have no idea what to write today, other than to let you know that I've got another review (actually two) at Blogcritics. And the KJVO review has generated a little bit of discussion (more than most of my posts at my own blog -- hmmm). So go over there and read -- and respond!

The real reason for this post is to take a trip back in time. One year ago today, what was I writing about? I was trying to refute the whole "all evangelicals are Reconstructionists" insanity (and probably doing a bad job of it), and I was confounded by the insanity of Christian secessionists who wanted to spark secession by one or two states. I had made a minor change to the blog template (not many people noticed...). But I was also busy wishing Nick Queen a happy birthday. Hmmm. If that was a year ago today -- that means it's Nick's birthday again!!!

Head over to his blog and wish him a happy birthday. Tell him I sent you!

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May 23, 2005

What's on YOUR Desk?

From Rebecca Writes, via Challies.com.

What books are on my desk? Well, my desk is almost too small for the computer I have on it, so I'm including what's stacked up next to it:


  • The Historical Evidence for the Virgin Birth by Vincent Taylor

  • Honor, Patronage, Kinship and Purity by David de Silva

  • (both now overdue from the library at Southern)

  • At the Pure Fountain of Thy Word: Andrew Fuller as an Apologist edited by Michael A.G. Haykin

  • The Holy Bible: New American Standard Version

  • The Holy Bible: English Standard Version

  • Total Truth by Nancy Pearcey

  • God's Bestsellerby Bryan Moynahan

So what books are on YOUR desk?

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May 21, 2005

Mark Study: Mark 7:24-30

And from there he arose and went away to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And he entered a house and did not want anyone to know, yet he could not be hidden. But immediately a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an unclean spirit heard of him and came and fell down at his feet. Now the woman was a Gentile, a Syrophoenician by birth. And she begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter. And he said to her, "Let the children be fed first, for it is not right to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs." But she answered him, "Yes, Lord; yet even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs." And he said to her, "For this statement you may go your way; the demon has left your daughter." And she went home and found the child lying in bed and the demon gone.
(Mark 7:24-30 ESV)
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Blog Critics

I am now a part of the vast cabal known as Blogcritics. My first post is right here, so go over there and read it, and comment!!

If you blog, and you review things like books or music, or even movies, Blogcritics is the place YOU need to be. Why not apply?

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May 20, 2005

More on the Qu'ran Desecrations

Found this interesting article at the Wall Street Journal (registration required). Since you have to register for it, I'll quote the relevant section here.
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May 18, 2005

Pomo? Not Me

Just read this over at Credenda/Agenda. I don't always agree with the folks over there, but I kinda like this one:

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Sweet!


What military aircraft are you?

F/A-22 Raptor

You are an F/A-22. You are technologically inclined, and though you've never been tested in combat, your very name is feared. You like noise, but prefer not to pollute any more than you have to. And you can move with the best.

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by YouThink.com quizzes and personality tests.


Hat tip to Scott at The Crusty Curmudgeon

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This Week in Church History

May 16, 583

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Good Question!

The New York Sun has asked a question that I think we should all be asking ourselves in light of Newsweek's article about Qur'an desecrations more...

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May 16, 2005

But .. He DIED!!!

Thanks to Bryan at Spare Change.

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Kristof and Spong

I haven't been mocking Nicholas Kristof lately, but his latest effort has really got me ... laughing.

In his attempt to reimagine Christianity, Kristof has engaged the arch-heretic John Shelby Spong. Paul was a gay man who attacked homosexuality to keep his own desires in check. Judas didn't betray Christ, because Paul (as well as the ever-elusive Q source) doesn't mention the betrayal at all. Never mind that Paul doesn't attempt to give an account of the life of Christ, and the betrayal never really factored into his ministry or teachings. If Paul didn't mention it, then it didn't happen. And Q seems to be the last refuge of doubt -- if we see something that all three Synoptics have in common, it has to be from Q (rather than it having to do with the common inspiration of God that the writers labored under).

Kristof comes short of actually agreeing with Spong, but he does say "at least he's engaged in the debate," and encourages liberals to engage conservative Christians on their own turf, on their own terms. If Spong is the best they have, I think they're better off with their current strategy of ridicule and ignore.

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