Friday, August 5, 2011

What They're Saying 08.05.11

Shoddy or Dishonest Scholarship In Christian Smith's The Bible Made Impossible

'Yesterday I received a copy of Christian Smith’s The Bible Made Impossible: Why Biblicism is not a Truly Evangelical Reading of Scripture. That was vexatious. Then today I stumbled onto Scot McKnights blog where he briefly summarizes Smith’s chapters. Here is his summary for chapter 3. McKnight accurately summarizes Smith’s chapter. Lamentably, McKnight also seems to accept Smith’s assertions as accurate and truthful without any question, investigation, or dispute. I will leave the issues concerning Charles Hodge and B. B. Warfield without comment, except to say one thing. It seems to elude Christian Smith that every bit of his sociologizing of what he calls “Biblicists” and “biblicism” could be turned back upon him.'

Pro-Abortion Advocates Try to Shut Down Crisis Pregnancy Centers

'As one abortion rights activist famously declared, “The fetus beat us.” When the fetus is seen for what it really is, the mother has a much harder time deciding to abort it. Crisis pregnancy centers generally offer a variety of services, ranging from counseling and adoption services to medical care and support for new mothers. All this is too much for the abortion industry, which rightly sees crisis pregnancy centers as their increasingly powerful opposition... In Baltimore, government officials severely tried to curtail the ability of crisis pregnancy centers to do their work, only to have their law set aside by a federal judge.'

Don't Neglect Prayer When Life Gets Too Busy

'Lately I've been sleeping less to get more done, and therefore feel drained in the doing; so I sleep more and get less done, but worry that I need to work faster. It's a vicious cycle I'm sure many reading this have experienced. Reading through some old notes on Calvin's Institutes made me realize what always gets dropped when life feels like one giant game of whirlyball: prayer. Calvin says that if we do not pray, we are like a man who "neglects a treasure, buried and hidden in the earth, after it had been pointed out to him." "So true is it," Calvin explains, "that we dig up by prayer the treasures that were pointed out by the Lord's gospel, and which our faith has gazed upon" (ibid.). The metaphor is apt: digging is hard work, but digging for a treasure known to be there is worth the effort.'

Truth, Beauty, Hell, and Rob Bell: Should We Copy His Style?

'But we ought to be careful about where we put the target and even how we praise Bell’s approach. He’s obviously an effective and popular communicator, but then so (in his own way) is Thomas Kinkade. They resonate with different demographics, of course, but both of them offer an aesthetic aimed at the lowest common denominator. Of course, walking down this path is a bit of a trick if you have to sell books. We live in an aesthetic environment that has been so watered down by mass exposure to words and images that the genuinely beautiful creation risks being dismissed as “boring.” It is easy to view the Mona Lisa and wonder what the big deal is... All that to say, I’m not ready to call Bell’s work beautiful, despite his overwhelming popularity and ability to connect with my generation.'

The Resurgence Covers the Councils of Chalcedon

'The Councils of Constantinople are not the “big name” church councils (such as Nicaea and Chalcedon). However, the church was (and is) facing theological dangers, and faithful theologians met time after time to examine Scripture and construct coherent responses to heretical theology. The church is “to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3), and the Councils of Constantinople are perfect illustrations of it doing just that.'

1 comment:

  1. If you have any links that you think we should put up in our daily What They're Saying posts, leave your suggestions here! You can do so anonymously, if you wish. -Sean


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