Is Philip Sasser’s Our Man in the Pews. I wish he updated it more, but honestly it’s well worth the wait.
Posts Tagged ‘Christianity’
Posted in Religion, tagged Augustine, Christianity, Confessions, Divinity, Existence, God, I Am, Infinity, Literature, Mysticism, Personal Revelation, Religion, Revelation, Saint Augustine, Spirituality, Truth on April 23, 2013 | Leave a Comment »
And I said, “Is truth, therefore nothing, because it is not diffused through space–neither finite nor infinite?”
And you cried to me from afar, “I am that I am.”
-Augustine, Confessions 7.10.16
Posted in Literature, Religion, tagged Art, Aslan, C. S. Lewis, Christianity, Chronicles of Narnia, Heaven, Jesus, Literature, Lucy Pevensie, Magic, Narnia, Religion, Spirituality, Voyage of the Dawn Treader on April 16, 2013 | Leave a Comment »
“I’m sorry. But please-”
“Speak on, dear heart.”
“Shall I ever be able to read that story again; the one I couldn’t remember? Will you tell it to me, Aslan? Oh do,do,do.”
“Indeed, yes, I will tell it to you for years and years.”
-C.S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Posted in Music, tagged Accidental Racist, America, Art, Brad Paisley, Christ and Pop Culture, Christianity, Country Music, Culture, Grace, LL Cool J, Love, Mainstream Country, Music, Nashville, Nick Rynerson, Patheos, Race, Sarcasm, Wheelhouse on April 10, 2013 | 10 Comments »
I posted a critical comment on Nick Rynerson’s post about the new and controversial Brad Paisley/LL Cool J song “Accidental Racist” on the Christ and Pop Culture blog at Patheos and it apparently got yanked for moderation. I’m not happy about that at all, so I’m re-posting it here, verbatim:
What a ridiculous hit piece. You should seriously be ashamed of yourself, not just as a Christian but as a decent person.
Yes, the song is clumsy. No, musically, it’s not the best song ever. But you know what? The sentiment comes from a genuine place. The intentions were good.
Consider Brad Paisley’s audience and ask yourself which is better, clumsy dialogue or no dialogue? Do you realize that by jumping on the bandwagon and blasting this song, you are contributing to an environment where racial dialogue is basically impossible? The reactions to this song across the internet send a clear message: “Talking about race is an impossible minefield. Don’t bother trying, because you’re going to do it wrong and people will turn on you like a pack of rabid dogs.” If you are going to mock, ridicule or castigate everyone who makes a good-faith attempt at talking about race because they don’t meet some ill-defined standard for cultural studies, you are essentially silencing the conversation. Is that really what you want?
And yes, we know you sneer at and look down on mainstream country. To be honest, I strongly suspect that’s what’s actually the big motivator for this blog post, as opposed to a real honest to God bone to pick about race in America.
Obviously the song is not perfect. Obviously even the sentiment has flaws: you don’t have to be cloistered in an Ivory Tower to realize race in America is more complicated than Paisley makes it out to be. Fine. The song is a first step and an honest one. How does responding to it with nastiness and sarcasm help things? How does jumping on the derision bandwagon correct the course? How does using sarcasm and scorn to chill good-faith efforts–even boneheaded ones–to talk about race improve race relations and foster real, productive dialogue?
And to Christians I ask, is Rynerson’s pieced a grace-filled respose? Is it filled with love? Rynerson thinks humility is a part of the solution? He’s sure not displaying any with this post.
I maintain that a significant part of the motivation–not just on Rynerson’s part, but all over the internet and news media–for the nastiness and scorn heaped on this song is really just nastiness and scorn for mainstream country. The level of vitriol would be nowhere this bad if Paisley were not a Nashville musician.
Posted in Literature, Religion, tagged Art, Christianity, Crescent, Cross, Duty, Hope, Humanity, Interview, Jean Stein, Literature, Math, MAthematics, Morality, Paris Review, Religion, Sacrifice, Southern Lit, Southern Literature, Suffering, William Faulkner, Writing on August 6, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
No one is without Christianity, if we agree on what we mean by that word. It is every individual’s individual code of behavior by means of which he makes himself a better human being than his nature wants to be, if he followed his nature only. Whatever its symbol — cross or crescent or whatever — that symbol is man’s reminder of his duty inside the human race. Its various allegories are the charts against which he measures himself and learns to know what he is. It cannot teach a man to be good as the textbook teaches him mathematics. It shows him how to discover himself, evolve for himself a moral codes and standard within his capacities and aspirations, by giving him a matchless example of suffering and sacrifice and the promise of hope.
Posted in Parenting, Religion, tagged Alaska, Christianity, Creation, Family, Hiking, Insects, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Marriage, Mosquitos, Mysticism, Nature, Parenting, Pests, Prayer, Religion, Revelation, Wisconsin on August 3, 2012 | 3 Comments »
One time I went on a short hike in the Wisconsin woods with my beautiful and sexy wife and our kiddos. We were mobbed by mosquitos–-more than I have ever seen at once in my entire life, and I spent a chunk of my childhood in Alaska, where the mosquito is the state bird. We showered ourselves in industrial-strength, hazardous-chemical, deep-woods mosquito repellant until our skin was on fire, but it did nothing. My exasperated five-year old son finall asked in anguish why Jesus made mosquitos, to which my wife replied “I don’t know, why don’t you pray and ask him.”
A moment of silent hiking later, my son pipes up, “Mommy, Jesus says he didn’t do it.”
Posted in Religion, tagged Analogy, Anointing, Appalachia, Appalachians, Bigotry, Blogging, Charismatic Christianity, Christianity, Chuch, Conversion, Death, Denominations, Fanaticism, FLDS, Fundamentalist Mormonism, George W. Hensley, God, Gospel of Mark, Ignorance, LDS, Mainstream, Mark, Mormonism, Mormons, Mountains, Mysticism, Outsiders, Pentecostalism, Personal Revelation, Poison, Polygamy, Prayer, Prejudice, Religion, Revelation, Serpents, Shane, Signs, Signs Following, Snake-handlers, Snakes, Strychnine, Tim on June 20, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
Uh . . . no. No Pentecostal did that until George W. Hensley started the practice in 1912, 12 years after Pentecostalism began. He was still a rather new convert and was praying in a mountain reading a passage in Mark when he received some weird revelation. Pentecostal denominations quickly labeled serpent handling as fanaticism and it has only ever been a feature of some churches in Appalachia. It is not a characteristic of Pentecostalism, neither now or in the past.
Why do you ask?
All I know about it is what I’ve read (having never encountered a serpent handler before). They believe, according to their interpretation of Mark 16:17-18 that serpent handling and drinking poison (some serpent handlers may also consume strychnine) are commanded in Scripture.
These activities will only take place when participants perceive the direct intervention of God. In other words, they wont do it unless “the anointing” is present. Deaths are explained by these people in the following ways: 1) the anointing was not present, 2) such deaths prove to outsiders that the snakes are poisonous and have not been defanged, 3) God wills their death.
I do hope you realize that the vast majority of Pentecostals are not serpent handlers. I would point out that people who assume that will be looked on as terribly ignorant and offensive by Pentecostals.
Now, I realize that the historical and organizational relationship between Appalachian snake-handlers and mainstream American Pentecostals is not even remotely similar to the relationship between fundamentalist polygamist Mormons and the mainstream Mormon Church, but Shane’s response may as well have been cut-and-pasted and searched-and-replaced from a mainstream Mormon’s reaction to being confronted about polygamy.
The only difference is that, as a bonus, Shane’s response also just drips with prejudice and snobbery towards Appalachian people.