Or so says this guy.
For those that don’t know, Professor Bruce Waltke, a lion of conservative evangelical scholarship, recently gave some comments for a brief video for the BioLogos Forum. BioLogos is the brain child of Francis Collins, the geneticist, current head of the National Institute of Health, and committed Christian. The Forum is a collective of like-minded scientists and Christians who believe that the Bible is the authoritative Word of God and God created the world by the process of evolution. (For more on this view, see Brad Kramer’s Patrol essay on the subject.) For those that struggle with this topic, BioLogos’ “The Questions” section offers very helpful articles on most every possible question you can think of concerning this discussion and gives thoughtful perspectives on it all.
Long story short (the best summary of all this can be found here), Waltke made some comments in line with this idea and the Christian blogosphere erupted with the ignorant, the passionate, and (only rarely) the thoughtful responders to this. Within a three week span, Waltke had made these comments, they were posted online, they were taken off-line, they were clarified by Waltke, he resigned his position at Reformed Theological Seminary, and was hired at Know Theological Seminary. In short, this man’s life, career, reputation, and family were completely exposed, turned upside down, and severely damaged because he said he didn’t think Adam had to be a historical figure for the Bible to still be true and authoritative.
And Rick Phillips, of Reformation21, appears to love this.
Here’s an interesting piece for those of us who identify with the term “post-evangelical.” In U.S. Catholic, Heather Grennan Gary writes about what Catholics can learn from evangelicals. It says Catholics should take three lessons from evangelicals: “building relationships, creating a culture of conversion and discipleship, and teaching young people how to tell their faith stories.” It is replete with language I consider evangelicalese: “encountering Christ,” “personal relationship with Jesus Christ,” and “experiencing God.”
Here is a quote from Father William J. O’Malley, about Catholic catechism:
They’ve substituted formulas and catechism answers for an experience of God. … No one is converted at the end of a catechism.
Much of the article seems to come down to “Catholics should feel more.”
As long as we’re on the topic of conversion, the funny thing, of course, is that a lot of evangelicals drawn to Catholicism think “Evangelicals should feel less. They should think more, like Catholics do.” That emotional “experience of God” is impossible for many of them to sustain without the thinking and the catechism and the long, dry tradition of scholarship. It’s what they find lacking in evangelicalism. It’s ironic: Catholics think Catholics should be more evangelical, and evangelicals think evangelicals should be more Catholic.
A week has passed since Jennifer Knapp came out. I’ve been following the story obsessively. As a teenager who was only allowed to listen to Christian music, I recognized that Jennifer Knapp’s honest style was unusual in the Christian community. She was my favorite artist back in high school, and I still enjoy her music now that my musical tastes have expanded.
To come out to Christianity Today is not only honest, but incredibly brave. While her Facebook fan page has been flooded with messages of support – “You’re an inspiration to me, both as a Christian and as a member of the GLBT community” – many others have failed to recognize the sensitivities surrounding Gay-Lesbian-Bisexual-Transgender-Queer identity and the complex viewpoints within the Christian community.
More and more gay Christians find they cannot deny their faith nor their sexual identity.
Here is a recent video of one of my personal heroes, Peter Rollins, as he discusses his recent Insurrection Tour. I recently read his book, The Fidelity of Betrayal, and it really did give words to most all that I have been wrestling with and through for the past year or so.
Rollins is a philosopher by trade, and his work has become the philosophical foundation for many of the more “Emergent” guys around today. And that’s what’s so interesting about him. He is good friends with Rob Bell and many of the Emergent Church folks quote Rollins to support many of their ideas. He is even talked about in the book Why We’re Not Emergent: By Two Guys Who Should Be by Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck, who definitely think Rollins is fundamentally flawed.
But, if you watch this video–by far the most succinct and comprehensive summary I’ve found of his thought–it seems like he really does stand in the middle between the fundamentalists and the liberals.
Is the political evangelical a mythical creature? It’s become a truism and a source of angst that non-Christians see the evangelical church as too political. But Mark Chaves points to a survey that says white mainline Protestants, black Protestants and Roman Catholic are overall more politically active than white evangelicals.
Odd, given the image. Andrew Sullivan weighs in, quoting Joe Carter, who says “the typical reaction at the grassroots level to almost every political initiative in the ‘religious right’ is “lot’s of talk; little to no action.”
Let’s aside the eternally tedious “young evangelical” and look at the old evangelical. It’s true. When I really think about it, not a lot of the white conservative evangelicals I know are all that politically involved. They vote Republican, of course. They get CitizenLink emails but don’t call the Congressmen like it tells them to. I don’t know anyone who went and rallied against health care. They sympathize with Tea Partiers but have never rallied there, either. They’re pro-life, but that basically means voting Republican.
However, when I look at my own parents and their friends, the nature of their political involvement has changed.
I have no problem admitting my bromance with Jamie Oliver. I’ve written about it elsewhere.
Stalkerishly, I tuned in to see the sneak peek of his new show, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, on ABC last Sunday night.
I laughed, I cried (literally), and I was blown away by Pastor Steve Willis of First Baptist Church of Kenova. I can’t remember the last time I saw an actual pastor on TV not willfully (or ignorantly) make himself – and by extension Christendom – a mockery.
Pastor Steve, fed up with seeing his congregation basically die from eating too much crap for far too long, is tackling gluttony from the pulpit, advocating his flock eat a little more grass and a little less fat. (My words, not his.)
At 17:00 in the first episode, Jamie, downtrodden from apathetic lunch ladies who don’t see any problem feeding kids processed piles of chemicals masquerading as food, visits Pastor Steve’s church on a Sunday morning.
Well lo and behold, irony is still alive and well (even outside hipsterdom). Apparently Christopher Hitchens, famed Evangelical Atheist and author of God is Not Great, has a brother who is not only a Christian, but just as smart as Christopher himself. In a recent article in London’s Daily Mail, Peter Hitchens talks about his upcoming book The Rage Against God (trailer below), the end of his nearly lifelong feud with Christopher, and his conversion from atheism.
But my point in bringing this to your attention is not to say to all the Christians out there “Rejoice! We have another smart British guy on our side!” or “That’ll show that stupid atheist.” I think we too often mistakenly use the presence of faith in those we put on various societal pedestals to assuage our own doubts and fears (in Britain it may be Peter Hitchens; in America it’s Tim Tebow). I also think we get far too offended by some of the more rabid atheists out there, causing us to pray for their conversion not necessarily so they would return to the Maker of their souls, but so they can feel the sting of having to admit they were wrong.
An amazing press release from Christian Eminem imitator rapper KJ-52, which needs no comment:
KJ-52 has an uncanny ability to reach the youth of today in a clever and hip manner. It may be through the subject matter of his music, his tech savviness that connects hims to his fans on a continual basis (twitter, blogs, etc.), or his ultimate mission to point others to God through his work. With the release of his new project “Five Two Television,” his weekly video devotions, and currently touring on the “Modern Day Heroes” tour with Group 1 Crew, KJ-52 is continually staying busy reaching out to his fans. We are excited to announce KJ-52’s follow up single to his hit “End Of My Rope” titled “Calling You” (Featuring J.R.). “Calling You” will be hitting the rock airwaves 2/26!
KJ-52 describes “Calling You” as a single, “filled with text message speak (LOL, TTYL, etc.) and is an analogy of God’s text message (His word) and how God seeks to have us in a relationship and just like others try to get ahold of us with a text. God does the same thing with his text (The Bible).”
Don’t miss out on this catchy and relevant single “Calling You”! Seeking add commitments for 2/26 at Rock radio!
The CCM Patrol has gotten so few tips lately that we were starting to doubt that shit like this was still being made. Alas. And yay.
It would seem we’re well on our way to starting a series here. The topic: Things We Already Know that Continue to Surprise Non-Evangelicals.
Two weeks ago I wrote about the notion that evangelicals don’t read books written by non-evangelicals, and last week I looked at yet another mega-church story put forth as representation of something new happening in evangelicalism. Yes. If by new they mean old.
This week I’m happy to announce a rather exciting event for New York City area evangelicals, a panel discussion put on by the literary magazine N+1 entitled “Evangelicalism and the Contemporary Intellectual.”
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