Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Christian Carnival CXIX (119): A Command Performance

The major reason I was hesitant (other than Wednesday morning being my "Monday" at work) to host a Carnival was the ability to come up with some organizational structure to categorize the posts. Since Christ said that "on these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets" I thought I would try to hang all the thoughts and insights of this Christian Carnival on them too (or myself in the effort).

Enjoy the rides at this week's Carnival.

The Lord Our God is One Lord; . . .
-- we love God because He first loved us; and it is the least we owe Him --
(Character of God; Unity of the Body; God's love for us)

Carl at Thoughts of a Gyrovague asks "Are You Being Defined, or Refined?":
"Allowing myself to be defined as a believer by one creed or another is heresy. The gospel is an all or nothing gospel, either follow it, or deny it."
Michael McCullough asks "Who are you?" at Stingray: a blog for salty Christians.
“Once you realize that your identity is based upon your relationship with God, and that God loves you unconditionally and always has your best interests at heart, then you will experience a sense of peace and joy that you have never known before.”
Sue at Sisters' Weblog: It Bloggles the Mind! writes "The Day I Was Crucified" inspired by a book with the same title:
"It is a story that makes one ponder what Jesus may have been thinking as He was crucified, died, was buried and then raised."
Chris at Welcome to the Fallout notices that some Christians may suffer from "Tight Theological Hatbands":
"sound doctrine requires that we get the whole biblical picture. And this means grasping the importance of charity and a little theological humility."
Penitens at A Penitent Blogger thinks "We Are Not Alone":
"A brief reflection on the persecution we sometimes endure as well as the unity and strength we thereby gain in Christ"

. . . and you shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart, . . .
-- love God first; and to relate to all things through our first love for God --

From Kathleen Dalton, at Vegetable Soup, read about "Your First Breath in Eternity" a short look at the meaning of Romans 10:10:
"Once your heart is broken, your mouth must cry out to God. You cannot just mentally accept that Jesus Christ is a fact. You must face Him and speak to Him."
Silas Jones writes about the "Virtue of Selfishness" launching from an Ayn Rand book of the same name.
"The virtue of selfishness is that our standard, our guiding post for morality, that we must follow if we want to live life and be satisfied by and within it, is that we must hold the pursuit of our life's best above all else."
Ron at Northern 'burbs blog begins a new series - My Politics: Faith's Place Therein (Part I):
"So if our faith informs our politics, and I'm talking about my politics, I need to start with my faith and what it says about politics. Some of this will be a bit surprising or controversial to some. So be it. I appreciate any questions or discussion."

. . . and with all your soul, . . .
-- love God with a real and passionate love - a whole-life love. --

Sue at Abstractions, after reading Jake Colson's e-book "So You Don't Want to go to Church Anymore" asks "What is 'Church' Anyway?"
"A church service isn't for getting a spiritual high to keep us going during the week. If we can't praise God on our own, and give him his worth in every aspect of our lives, then even the most thrilling and moving church service becomes a distraction, not a bonus."
Katy at Fallible asks "Where?":
"In the empty back pew at my once-on-Sunday church or inside the crisp pages of a Book I seldom read."

. . . and with all your mind, . . .
-- give ourselves to a determined pursuit of truth; bring our mind under the lordship of Christ; and to pursue having a mind that is "on fire" with the truth about God. --

Martin LaBar at Sun and Shield submits "Environmental Stewardship in the Bible" for Earth Day.
"I try to point out most of the Bible passages relating to environmental stewardship, and consider issues related to it, such as 'Why should we care, when all of this will disappear anyway?' "
The Bloke at . . . in the outer . . . is thinking through what it means to fear God (second in series). In "The Meaning of Fearing God: Truth" he talks about authenticity:
"what I want to concentrate on here is that the first step to practicing “the fear of the Lord” is to practice authenticity - being true to oneself."
John at Barefoot in the Wilderness posts "The ID Debate - A Summary":
"A summary [and links to] a series of posts between myself and Peter Williams debating the theological implications of Intelligent Design theory"
Mandi at Imago Dei writes "Religiosity and Intelligence" in response to the Martian Anthropologist and a Wiki article of the same name.
"Christianity acknowledges that we are all flawed. Everyone, from the corrupt politician to Mother Theresa to the Pope . . . Christianity is about acknowledging this truth."
Barbara at Tidbits And Treasures presents "Society Vs. God - In The Lives of Women":
"Too often, women follow after the dictates of society, rather than following after God, who will never lead us wrong."
Jeremy at Parableman looks at "Anti-ID: Confusing Motivation and Theoretical Basis":
"One common complaint about intelligent design arguments relies on confusing the theoretical basis of the arguments with the motivation people have for presenting the arguments."
Rev Bill shares his thoughts on "The Problem With The DaVinci Code":
"First of all, I must say that the book was 'a good read' for those who love murder / mystery novels (as I do)."

. . . and with all your strength. . .
-- to see every ability as a means to express love for God; and to live as a dependent “receiver” and a consistent “giver” of what God gives to me. --

DB at The Evangelical Ecologist doesn't think he is as into holidays as his wife; but has an idea about Earth Day:
"I like the timing [of Earth Day]. It's marvelous to be able to use the glory of spring and its new blossoms and baby critters to usher in an annual reminder of what a precious gift from God we have in this thriving earth of ours."
John Bambenek at Part-Time Pundit presents "Gay Marriage Debate Talk: My Opening Statement"
"By saying that we either need to enunciate a public good or get rid of the institution, I'm banking the most people intuitively think we need to keep the institution, so they look for a public good."
Kneon presents "Get Caught Up in the TEMPEST" at kneon transitt shouldn't be allowed to blog:
"The Tempest one-shot [comic book] was released this month from Alias Enterprises and Community Comics. For those of you who are out of the loop, it's a jam book with proceeds going to the Salvation Army for use in disaster relief."
Jack Yoest presents "Wilberforce and Gapingvoid":
"Wilberforce was able to sell a very big project by making the intangible, tangible. From global-big to individual-small. He made the individual slave real to the individual Member of Parliament."
John at Light Along the Journey reminds us that in our walk with God there is "No Trail of Candy":
"How do we decide what to do? This is a question that scores of writers have devoted books to answering."
Jeff the Baptist also takes a look at "Spirituality and Smarts":
"Scott Adams has a discussion going about the connection between spirituality and intelligence. Honestly, I'm pretty conflicted on the subject. While I don't think Christians are generally any more intelligent than non-Christians, I do think there may be elements of Christianity that may make it seem that way..."

The second is this,
you shall love your neighbor as yourself.

-- it is primarily in showing love for people that love for God is confirmed as real --

Dunmoose at Dunvocation describes "Easter Vigil 2006" at Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica in Ottawa, and why it was important to him.
"Last Saturday’s Easter Vigil was the most memorable of all. First, because I had consciously prepared myself for Easter through my Lenten preparation. Second, because I became Godfather for my dear friend Sharon."
Mark at Pseudo-Polymath points out that "Assumptions (Axioms) Are Key":
"In a recent court case, the majority opinion contained a key argument that seemed to me to be counter to a basic tenet of Christian teaching. Who is right, logically speaking?"
Anthony at Fides et Veritas points out that "God is Love":
"This is a post about the message that God is Love and how that it is a message that is so simple that we as Christians tend to make it harder than it really is."
Diane at Crossroads: Where Faith and Inquiry Meet talks about "Nagaland":
"Nagaland, in northeast India, is a good example of what happens in a society when Christ is welcomed into many hearts as Savior. Why can't we do that here?"

There is no other commandment greater than these.


  1. Thanks for your efforts! You did a great job!

  2. Thanks for all the work you put into this week's Carnival! Looks great!

  3. Thanks so much for the effort this week. It looks great and pointed me to some awesome reads!


How to debate charitably (rules are links to more description of rule):
1. The Golden Rule
2. You cannot read minds
3. People are not evil
4. Debates are not for winning
5. You make mistakes
6. Not everyone cares as much as you
7. Engaging is hard work
8. Differences can be subtle
9. Give up quietly