Thursday, December 20, 2007

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas in Africa

Too good not to post. Hat tip to Ryan.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Can't wait!

The trailer for Prince Caspian is out! Coming in May.

In case you forgot...

Chris Sligh is still good. I just wanted to remind you. He's working on a recording project and it looks like he's really exploring the more explicitly Christian music side. I really like the first song on the link's demo, Empty Me. Wow. I could listen to this all day.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Happy Rediscoveries!

The house was getting a little too quiet for me this evening, so I reached into my record shelf and mindlessly grabbed something I haven't played in a while and put it on. Much to my delight, it was Elgar's Enigma Variations! I forgot I had that gem. My house is filled with glorious sounds. :-)

BTW, the NDSymphony Orchestra will be playing this wonderful piece next semester! Stay tuned. But if you can't wait to hear it live (which I do every week during rehearsal--yay!), just drop by for a cup of tea and I'll let you listen to my record. Benjamin Britton is on the flip side!

Some numbers and stuff

This is really interesting: SharperIron posted a survey of young fundamentalists to try to gauge the direction of the movement (at least, I think that's why). I don't think it was exceptionally well defined, but maybe that's because I don't fully understand what it is trying to discover. Some of the more surprising things to me come from what choices were given or not given in questions. For example, Number 26, Which statement best describes your view of sanctification? the responses are
  • Once a believer is saved, he is not sanctified until he totally surrenders at which time he can then achieve a state of Christian perfectionism with the perfect love toward God and man.
  • Once a believer is saved, he lives a defeated life until he lets go and lets God. This consecration leads to the victorious life of inward rest and outward victory.
  • Once a believer is saved, his process of sanctification is a gradual growth in holiness through spiritual disciplines. There is no second decision.
  • Once a believer is saved, he is carnal until he accepts Christ as Lord. He then becomes a spiritual man and begins to slowly grow to become more like Christ.
  • I don't know.
Ok, I recognize Weslyanism, Keswick theology, Evangelicalism (maybe?), and I don't know what the penultimate one is. But what about "Once a believer is saved the Holy Spirit sanctifies him and produces fruit." Or something like that? I mean, that's a common view, isn't it? Isn't it?

Also of note:
  • Over 100 respondents (about 10%) believe in gap theory of creation. Really? I didn't realize that one was still around.
  • On Question 31: Which view most closely resembles your belief about the millennium? Amillennialism is not an option. At all. Neither was "none of the above." Nevermind that it is the predominant belief in Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, Anglican, and Reformed churches, among others. I mean, I expected it to be in the minority, given the survey selection, but I figured it would at least be given as an option. It didn't occur to them that at least one of the 1000+ respondents might pick it?
  • Over 72% believe the Lord will return during their lifetime.
  • 133 respondents agreed with the statement "Women are equal with men but cannot be in leadership over men in the church, home, or society." Society? Really? Well, there goes Hillary... I guess that one's not that surprising, now that I think about it.
  • 14% strongly disagreed with the statement "The preaching of most fundamental evangelists is healthy for believers."
  • More respondents were members of the Green Party than the Democratic Party.
  • More respondents believe smoking marijuana is always morally wrong than extramarital sex. Smoking is close.
The survey is fascinating and, I confess, a little depressing.

Upon looking more closely at the survey, I see now that I mistook some of the items.
  1. There WAS a choice for amillennialism. It garnered 8% of the vote. I had overlooked it.
  2. I reread the choices for views on Creation. Over 10% chose day-age theory, not gap theory. There's a difference. I guess. But still.

It's like Christmas around here!

We got a tree for the apartment. Puck is ecstatic.

Thursday, December 06, 2007


I am totally going to open up one of these one day. What could be better than a cup of something warm and a fuzzy kitty to snuggle (or snorgle, if you're an ICHC lurker)? I'm thinking this would go well in a college town where there are a lot of 18-24 year old women living in apartments that don't allow pets.

Here's Calico's website. It's in Japanese, but if you click the second link down on the sidebar on the left you get pictures of all their cats.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

More on Fundamentalism

In the course of the ongoing discussion about Fundamentalism that rages on the interwebs, a recent part of which cropped up over at Lincoln's place (and at Camille's), Joanna sent me a link to a 2005 address by Dr. Bauder to the American Association of Christian Colleges and Seminaries. In it he acknowledges that Fundamentalism is in crises, and makes a case for salvaging it rather than rejecting and replacing it.

I wish I had time right now to form a fuller response to it, because it's really interesting. For now, I'll cite the first three paragraphs, which I think are really crucial to the argument:
At this meeting we are asking how we can retain the next generation of leaders for fundamentalism. The question assumes that the younger generation may decide to leave fundamentalism. If we were to lose the next generation of leaders, we would lose fundamentalism as we know it. In effect, the question that we are considering is, “How shall we save fundamentalism?”

This question puts the cart before the horse. If our efforts to attract future leaders are to be anything more than salesmanship, then we must offer the kind of fundamentalism that is worth living in and living for. Rather than asking how to save fundamentalism, we would do well to ask why fundamentalism should be saved, or, more specifically, what kind of fundamentalism is worth saving.

In answering this question, I first distinguish fundamentalism as an idea from fundamentalism as a movement. As I have said on other occasions, fundamentalism is a great idea. As an idea, fundamentalism is essentially a doctrinal and ecclesiastical reaction against unbelief masquerading as Christianity. Ideal fundamentalists affirm that all doctrine is important, but they recognize that some doctrines are more important than others. They assert that some doctrines are so important as to be essential to the gospel itself. These essential or fundamental doctrines are held to be indispensably bound to the very definition of Christianity. While ideal fundamentalists certainly do not believe that Christianity can be reduced to a doctrinal statement, they affirm that Christianity rests upon an inviolable doctrinal foundation. To add to or subtract from that foundation is to deny Christianity itself. Moreover—and this is the crux of the matter—fundamentalists insist that no Christian fellowship can exist or should be pretended with people who deny the gospel.

What strikes me immediately about the description of "ideal Fundamentalism" is the impression that Fundamentalism at its inception is trying to reinvent the wheel. What's wrong with the Nicene Creed? The Apostle's Creed? For centuries before anyone called himself a Fundamentalist these were tests of orthodoxy. Didn't Fundamentalism essentially do what Dr. Bauder argues against: reject an ill-used system and start over?

Update: It's spread. Also at Andrew's place.

The joy of forums

Forums are great. They are interesting, engrossing, a great platform for influencing people and finding information, and a massive time warp. I just found and joined a new one, and boy is it fun! Read all about what people in South Bend are saying about South Bend at!

Every city should have an online water cooler. Seriously!