Sunday favorites

Jun. 25th, 2017 01:35 pm
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Posted by Fred Clark

You have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who oppress you? Is it not they who drag you into court? Is it not they who blaspheme the excellent name that was invoked over you?
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Posted by Fred Clark

Those of us who have served time in conservative Christian youth groups recognize this theme from the many, many Why Wait lectures we heard. Your purity and innocence, the lecture always said, are the Greatest Gift that you can offer to your spouse on your wedding day. Setting aside the merits of this particular pitch for chastity, the strange thing here is finding that the inner monologue of jet-setting, secular, un-saved Buck Williams sounds like a True Love Waits seminar.

If we confess our sins

Jun. 22nd, 2017 11:47 pm
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Posted by Fred Clark

At this point in the sermon, pastors often balk and attempt to do the impossible -- to provide an example of their personal "sin" that is not actually shameful or hurtful or distasteful. They'll bring up some minor matter of akrasia, some petty foible or embarrassment. They'll confess to once saying a dirty word when they accidentally hit their thumb with a hammer, or to being impatient in traffic. Their personal illustration, being something trivial, trivializes the entire sermon.
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Posted by Fred Clark

Some would adamantly disagree that white evangelicalism has, in any way, "gone wrong." (It's those liberal mainline Protestants who went wrong, doncha know, with their fancy seminaries and their Darwinism and whatnot.) But the more important and more interesting disagreement is among those who perceive that, yes, white evangelicalism has gone wrong, but who approach what that means in two very different ways.
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Posted by Fred Clark

The Southern Baptist Convention has passed an official resolution on racism. I'm happy to report that they're against it. Alas, they also demonstrated that they don't understand what it is they're against and up against, or what it will mean for them to oppose it in substance and not just in rhetoric.

How long?

Jun. 19th, 2017 11:55 am
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Posted by Fred Clark

Today’s protest anthem and Monday morning open thread comes courtesy of U2. But is that protest or is it lamentation? Yes. (The melody here is pretty old — over 30 years at this point. The lyrics are, of course, much older. Bono and David are both among my problematic faves.)

Sunday favorites

Jun. 18th, 2017 12:14 pm
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Posted by Fred Clark

"O Lord, you God of vengeance, you God of vengeance, shine forth! Rise up, O judge of the earth; give to the proud what they deserve! O Lord, how long shall the wicked, how long shall the wicked exult?"

LBCF, No. 139: ‘Worlds collide’

Jun. 16th, 2017 10:54 am
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Posted by Fred Clark

There would be, post-Event, some kind of ritualized exchange that would acknowledge this common ground of loss and bewilderment, some way of asking and answering the “where were you when?” and “who did you lose?” questions. Nothing like this ever happens post-Rapture with any of the characters in Left Behind.
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Posted by Fred Clark

Resolutions and the votes on them tend to get reported as official Southern Baptist pronouncements -- as analogous to papal encyclicals or edicts issued by the bishops of formal denominational churches. That's misleading. These resolutions don't present official denominational dogma because there is no official denomination.
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Posted by Fred Clark

Ben Wikler of MoveOn wrote a helpful Twitter thread recently on why it's a really bad idea to call multiple members of Congress pretending to be a constituent of theirs. That's a very specific bit of advice about one very specific thing. But it is not only that.
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Posted by Fred Clark

Ralph Reed avoided prison for his role in the Jack Abramoff casino-lobbying scandal. That's the best you can say for him. He managed to participate in Abramoff's schemes and scams, and to get very rich doing so, yet somehow skated by as an unindicted co-conspirator.
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