1000 Wells

 

Archive for November, 2006

Written November 30th, 2006 with 2 Comments »

Spore: Do the evolution through the Tide Pool, Creature, Tribal, City, Civilization, and Space Phases of life on a planet. A deeper look at the game can be viewed via video.

Written November 30th, 2006 with No Comments »

Have you seen the Gospel Musical Channel yet? No! Well, go check out the promotional video! The Gospel Music Channel’s Mission is to inspire, uplift and entertain through music. The vision is to be the most popular and valued gospel music television brand across America and around the world. The Channel wants to make a positive impact on our world by spreading the positive message of Christian music and extending help to those in need. The site blurb itself says this: Introducing Gospel Music Channel – the first 24-hour, all music entertainment network devoted to the uplifting, inspiring and diverse music that is Gospel. From the soulful sounds of artists like CeCe Winans, to the country gospel roots of Johnny Cash and Randy Travis, to the contemporary Christian music stylings of Kirk Franklin and Jars of Clay – Gospel Music Channel celebrates music that has a deep, spiritual place in people’s lives. It embraces an audience that crosses cultures and captures generations delivering a fan base so large and passionate it deserves its own network.

Written November 30th, 2006 with 4 Comments »

Michel W. Barsoum, a professor of materials engineering at Drexel University, in Philadelphia, is advancing the idea that the Great Pyramids of Giza are made out of more than just cut natural limestone (which mystified us all as to how exactly they hoisted cut limestone way up there high on the pyramid structure). How did those ancients do it? Barsoum thinks they used concrete to make concrete blocks. “They used concrete blocks,” he said, according to the NY TIMES, “on the outer and inner casings and probably on the upper levels, where it would have been difficult to hoist carved stone.”

Written November 30th, 2006 with 24 Comments »

The following statements are quick but very accurate summarizations of five basic theological propositions of religious and/or Christian liberalism (The topic was discussed in a seminary class re: Christianity in America. The points are taken from a class hand-out on the subject). I will be dedicating the next few major posts to each of these five points, individually and chronologically. I will be doing so in a dedicated attempt to not only illustrate the sufficiency of Biblical Christianity, Orthodox/Classical Christian Doctrine, and, of course, Jesus Christ (in contrast to the utter insufficiency of Liberal and/or Christian Liberalism), but also to really flush out the seriously weak presuppositions, assumptions and biases inherent to each point.

1. The Bible is an expression of the religious experience of ancient Israel and the early church. It represents the chronologically extended struggle of a highly spiritual people to understand the Divine reality more adequately. It is NOT the word of God coming to us from some transcendent sphere. A progression can be seen in the Bible from more primitive (and more inadequate) forms of religions experience to deeper, richer, and more profound forms of religious experience. The Bible is a human record of a progressive human spiritual journey, reflecting the prejudices, mistakes, and failings of the people who wrote it. Nevertheless, it is a profound (the most profound, perhaps) record of religious experience. We contemporary Christians most locate ourselves in this story of human religious evolution and extend the trajectory.

2. The Virgin Birth narratives are a poetic and symbolic way of expressing the truth that Jesus was a very profound teacher and spiritual guide. Of course, he was conceived and born in the standard human manner. There is nothing supernatural about his biology or ontological composition, except that he was supremely aware of God and God’s will in the deepest levels of his experience.

3. A loving God does not need to punish anybody in order to be reconciled with sinners. The death of Jesus on the cross, in which Jesus continues to do God’s will and continues to call God “Father,” shows that it is possible to remain in spiritual contact with God in spite of earthly suffering and tragedy. Jesus’ death also shows that we all should be faithful to God’s mission and call, in spite of worldly threats and dangers.

4. The stories of the resurrection show that, in some sense, the spirit of Jesus, and the spirits of all faithful persons, lives on, either in the memory and experience of future generations, or in the mind of God, or both. The language of bodily resurrection and the talk of some sort of novel postmortem individual experience are symbols of this enduring spiritual quality and should not be taken literally.

5. The miracle stories in the Bible are archaic rhetorical means of expressing certain spiritual truths. For example, to say that Jesus walked on water means that the pure of heart can remain tranquil in the midst of earthly tribulation.

I will say, again, that I put very, very little stock - zero, actually - in the above five propositions. In fact, I find them to terribly weak attempts at theological manipulation. I will explain why in this series, over the course of the next few weeks.

Written November 29th, 2006 with 9 Comments »

1 Timothy 3:4-5 is a very important piece of New Testament confirmation re: ministerial preparedness that is often overlooked today. 1 Timothy says, re: aspirants to the ministry: He must manage (proistamenon) his own household well, keeping his children submissive and respectful in every way; for if a man does not know how to manage (prostenai) his own household, how can he care for God’s church?

Written November 29th, 2006 with No Comments »

My first editorial has been published over at Social Truth Dot Com. This week’s topic is: Christian Coalition President Resigns. My Think Piece is titled: The Christian Coalition: Not My Son’s Evangelicalism. Swing by and give the other editorials a read and leave your thoughts too!

Written November 28th, 2006 with 7 Comments »

New Line Cinema’s The Nativity Story hits theaters this Friday, December 1st. The film looks absolutely incredible, if the promotional clips are any indication. Here is all the recommendation that I need: “… The Nativity Story is biblically accurate, historically authentic, and visually stunning. Written with heart … it’s destined to become a beloved Christmas classic,” said Anne Graham Lotz, founder of AnGeL Ministries and daughter of evangelist Billy Graham. A movie about Christ at Christmas! Oh the scandal! I wonder if ‘they’ will picket and protest it as too Christian? God, I hope not.

Written November 28th, 2006 with No Comments »

I do consider it a deep joy and great honor to join Matt, Zach and Andy as a contributing writer over at the freshly formatted Social Truth Dot Com. I was pleased and seriously humbled by Matt Kitchen’s invitation to join the group as a “Think Piece” Editorialist. “Think Pieces” is a fantastic idea with loads and loads of edifying potential. I am very, very excited to get started on my first offering (it should be published by Friday, December 1st). I also look forward to reading Matt, Zach and Andy’s editorials too! The whole Social Truth program sounds great fellows! Good work! I do look forward to getting to know each of you better as we team up and tackle some of the most pressing social issues of our day.

For information’s sake, here is the about statement for Social Truth, taken directly from the site: “SocialTruth.com is the collaboration of 4 men who share the interest of finding God’s Truth in everything they observe and do. We hope you enjoy reading our thoughts and we invite you to leave your own.

Be sure to visit the site regularly. Also, add it to your news/feed readers too while you are at it! It should be a most interesting time! Blessings and Peace to all!

Social Truth

Written November 27th, 2006 with 10 Comments »

Richard A. Shweder: Atheists Agonistes: “A deeper and far more unsettling answer, however, is that the popularity of the current counterattack on religion cloaks a renewed and intense anxiety within secular society that it is not the story of religion but rather the story of the Enlightenment that may be more illusory than real … Science has not replaced religion; group loyalties have intensified, not eroded. The collapse of the cold war’s balance of power has not resulted in the end of collective faiths or a rush to democracy and individualism. In Iraq, the ‘West is best’ default (and its discourse about universal human rights) has provided a foundation for chaos … Even some children within the enclave are retreating from the Enlightenment in their quest for a spiritual revival; one discovers perfectly rational and devout Jews or Hindus in one’s own family, or living down the block. If religion is a delusion, it is a delusion with a future, which it may be hazardous for us to deny. A shared conception of the soul, the sacred and transcendental values may be a prerequisite for any viable society.” (Source: NYTIMES)

Written November 27th, 2006 with No Comments »

The AP intro to this story says it all: The pastor at Anchorage First Free Methodist Church was mystified. Why was the activist group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals chastising him? No animals are harmed in the church’s holiday nativity display. In fact, animals aren’t used at all.