9. It mangles mission. The culture war sets the Church above and against the world, rather than in but not of the world. It turns us into picketers and politicos. It makes us suspicious and speculative and sensationalist. It takes relationship completely out of the missional equation. It turns us from peaceful ambassadors for Christ into pontificating warriors for Christianity. It does not ask us to serve and sacrifice, which are non-negotiables for Christian mission, but to maneuver and argue.Read more!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Saturday, November 28, 2009
At the moment I am writing this line 178,536 people have signed "The Manhattan Declaration" - A Call to Christian Conscience. It is probably clear from my series on the culture wars that I will not be a signer of the Declaration - but some comments are in order.
Their website front page reads:
Friday, November 27, 2009
8. It has no root in Jesus’ ministry. Jesus knew heart change didn’t come through political power, cultural pressure, or zealotry, so he was keenly disinterested in those things.Read more!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
I was having a chat with someone who seemed to believe apology was only about Christian apologetics. It isn't, as the examples in this comment point out. The definition I would hang with in the set was from Wiki:
In modern times, apologists refers to authors, writers, editors of scientific logs or academic journals, and leaders known for defending the points in arguments, conflicts or positions that receive great popular scrutinies and/or are minority views.Right after posting that, I ran across a skit from Monty Python that is one of my all-time favorites - along with the Lumberjack Song of course (and the Cheese Shop . . .). It is, IMO, an example of Epic Fail at apology by the shop owner.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
7. It makes idols of comfort and safety and propriety and power. The culture war is largely driven by fear. We’re afraid our public schools will ruin our children, we’re afraid gay people will ruin our families. We’re afraid a Democrat will ruin our country, we’re afraid liberals will ruin our neighborhoods. Now, there is nothing wrong with wanting to protect our family, and safety of course is not a bad thing. But neither is it a biblical virtue. Ditto comfort.Read more!
I keep a lot of different folks on my Google Reader list from a lot of different perspectives - people that I think offer the most intelligent examples I have found for a particular niche I am interested in.
One of those sites is Common Sense Atheist. Occasionally, those places put things up that make me question why I keep them on my list. Luke just posted one of those: "Jesus is Magic".
Admittedly, up to now I haven't had a real sense of why belief in a Creator God and belief in magic are not the same; and Luke gave me the opportunity to get this defined for myself.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
6. Its treasure is temporary. I am not overly concerned with the culture war because it is a battle for something that doesn’t last. Culture is temporary. I am far more interested in the transformation of peoples through the transformation of people than I am in the subduing of culture through the modification of behavior. Nobody ever got into heaven by acting better.Read more!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
5. It battles against flesh and blood. We’re not supposed to do that.Read more!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
It seems rare for two intelligent folks with diametrically opposed views actually have a civilized, engaging conversation. It seems to me it is even rarer when one is an atheist and one is a follower of Christ who wrote a pretty scathing indictment of Dawkins, Hitchens and company.
The atheist is Luke at Common Sense Atheist and he wrote a post called "The Irrational Atheist (notes in the margin, part 2)". Vox Day wrote The Irrational Atheist and has a blog called Vox Popoli.
I am following both of them in Google Reader. On the Vox Day side, The Irrational Atheist provided most, if not all, the basis for a couple of my posts. I also posted the beginnings of an exchange of letters between Luke and Vox.
However, what has gotten my attention this time is this set of comments by Luke. First, he quotes VD from the chapter "The Case Against Science":
Thursday, November 12, 2009
4. It is often hypocritical. It is the height of weirdness to expect people who don’t know Jesus to act like they do especially when we can’t get our own house in order. So long as large numbers of Christians continue contributing to the divorce statistics, the porn industry, and more acceptable sins like gluttony and gossip and greed, we have zero business telling the world how to act. Judgment begins at the house of God.Read more!
1 Peter 4:17 For it is time for judgment to begin, starting with the house of God. And if it starts with us, what will be the fate of those who are disobedient to the gospel of God?
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Monday, November 09, 2009
Thanks for this very clear and helpful comment about what the strategy is wrt Evangelicals, theology, and civil marriage laws.I can try to do that - but it may not work out.
I'd be interested in a diary from you on the theology behind Evangelical (and other Reformed, maybe) attitudes towards the relationship between church and state.
Sunday, November 08, 2009
3. It is theologically naive. It is the height of weirdness to expect people who don’t know Jesus to act like they do.Read more!
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Two things caught my eye this week related to the way discussions seem to go online:
- "The Sufficiency of Probability in the Christian Belief" , Parchment and Pen, C. Michael Patton
- "Bulverism" , God in the Dock, by C.S. Lewis
Thursday, November 05, 2009
2. Its medium is moralism, not gospel. It makes kingdom militancy about religion, not gospel. It seeks a Christian coercion of others toward better behavior, not an incarnational sharing with others of the better Way.Read more!
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
[The index for the series is here.]
I am using the Pastor's titles for these posts. The appropriate links are:
Sunday, November 01, 2009
It seems to go along with my other post today on "Foolish Expectations" -- how does a church define and set expectations based on the Headship of Christ rather than the world.
1. Its expectation is foolish. Whether you believe America was ever a Christian nation or not, it is theologically naive and demonstrably false to think laws or policies make anyone a Christian. You cannot create or recapture a people for Christ by illegalizing sin. (Which, by the way, is not to say that certain sins shouldn’t be illegal. It is only to say that, for instance, outlawing gay marriage or repealing Roe v. Wade won’t make anybody a Christian, much less make America “a Christian nation.”)Read more!