About that little box in the right sidebar. . .
I can't really tell if anyone is keeping up with the Where I Am Right Now® listing in the right sidebar, because no one ever comments on anything there. Shall I keep updating that list, or get rid of it? Give me some feedback here.
Notice that in commemoration of the beginning of Autumn, I've put Glazunov's "The Seasons" at the top of my iPod playlist. "Autumn" is the best-known movement in that work, and I dare you not to like it.
By the way, there are some real musical treasures in the "on my iPod" section of that list. If you see music linked there, give it a listen. My tastes start with the classics, but my playlist is pretty eclectic, ranging from Caribbean to contemporary Hindi. If I link something musical, you can assume it's because I like it. If you want to expand your listening repertoire beyond whatever is popular on the radio or cheesy Contemporary Christian Music, sample some of what's on my iPod. I promise not to steer you wrong.
On the current epidemic of quasi-anonymity. . .
One rant before I start giving links: What's with all the people blogging under their first names only? Furthermore, why do some bloggers omit their profiles or make them next-to-impossible to find? Is this some kind of faux humility? If you are regularly posting strongly opinionated stuff and want be taken seriously, you ought to tell your readers who you are. On the other hand, if you have a good reason to remain anonymous (and I realize there are some valid reasons for that), blog under an honest-to-goodness pseudonym and admit that's what you're doing.
And now, without further ado. . .
- Everyone is entitled to 15 minutes of fame, right? Bob Hayton has about 14 more minutes' worth coming to him.
- Kim Shay, on the other hand, always seems to wish her 15 minutes were already spent. Nonetheless, she may well hold the record for having been BlogSpotted more than anyone else, ever. Here she is grateful for Dan Phillips's pastoral encouragement. Follow her links for a bonus post about Dan's September 11 sermon.
- Frank Martens has spurned my counsel.
- Brent Railey notes that confidence must have a solid foundation. Amen.
- Von at "Von's Takes" just found us and is enjoying us so far. Give him time.
- Peter Bogert appreciated Dan's "dead-center right-on hit-the-nail-on-the-head article" about inerrancy. I would echo Peter's and Dan's response to all the current waffling at the post-evangelical fringe about the idea of biblical inerrancy: been there, done that. Nibbling at the edges of the Bible's authority and integrity never bore any good fruit.
- Michael Bates liked Dan's "Preachapalooza" post.
- Bonnie at "Intellectuelle" quoted Dan's remark about the danger of slippery slopes.
- Byron Harvey is neither as blunt nor as pessimistic as I am (who is?), but he is inclined to agree with me that Emergent-style post-evangelicalism is pointing down a blind alley in a dead-end street on the wrong side of town. Byron points out that without some boundaries, the "Emerging Conversation" cannot credibly claim any true or legitimate commitment to biblical and historic Christianity.
Actually, as I have suggested elsewhere, I do think there are certain ground rules for the "Emerging Conversation," but they are exactly the wrong kind of "boundaries," because they exclude those of us who do believe some key truths are settled and certain and perspicuously affirmed by the Word of God.
- Rob Wilkerson has been keeping track of occasional posts around the blogosphere that have mentioned issues related to continuationism/cessationism for the past year. I had to smile at this line: "It really is hard to believe that the previous debate [over cessationism and continuationism] took place almost a year ago!" Psst, Rob: there never was any actual "debate" over cessationism and continuationism last year, remember?
My own association with the rumored "debate" began when I blogged about the danger of imagining that God is giving someone private messages when he is not. (I tried to make it perfectly clear that I was not even targeting charismatics in particular. I specifically introduced my post by saying the trend toward listening to voices in our heads is a problem everywhere "from the evangelical mainstream to the wildest charismatic fringe.")
Roband a few othersalmost immediately issued dire forecasts: A major storm over the issue of cessationism was supposedly approaching.
Charismatic bloggers evidently took that as a call to arms. A few less-than-friendly commenters invaded my comments threads and literally dared me to say a word in favor of cessationism. I steadfastly declined to engage any such "debate." Instead I repeatedly attempted to point out that my argument against the dangers of failed prophecies (not cessationism per se) was self-evidently true and ought to be affirmed by cessationists and non-cessationists alike.
From that time until now, I've actually done everything I can (short of pretending to have received the gift of tongues) to avoid fighting with charismatic brethren about their charismatic beliefs.
Incidentally, even Rob later revised his post, toning down his storm-warning into challenge to a pillow-fight. But one or two charismatic bystanders (<cough>Brad</cough>) still seemed rather bellicose and over-eager for a gloves-off theological brawl. Every time I dipped a toe back into the private-revelations-aren't-trustworthy theme, charismatics here and there started filling their pillow-cases with rocks. So I ultimately declined to "debate" the issue of cessationism at all. Still haven't. Even Dan's friendly back-and-forth discussions with Adrian Warnock about tongues and whatnot has hardly been a vigorous debate over cessationism. Just for the record.
- Meanwhile, Scott Burness (whose blog regularly crashes my browser) finally (perhaps accidentally) acknowledges the one argument I have made about cessationism: No one is really a consistent, full-blown continuationist. Scott writes: "No orthodox reformed charismatic believes that revelation is still being given by the Holy Spirit." That's actually a cessationist position, Scott. Where's the "debate," then? It seems to me that we only differ in how consistent we are willing to be. (Now get your blogtemplate healed so it doesn't crash IE.)
- Bowden McElroy, on the other hand, notes with pleasure that the current "debate" is like few others. He marvels at the civility Dan and Adrian have shown one another in their exchange, and speculates that it might have something to do with the fact that Adrian is a Brit, Dan is in Northern California, and neither is SBC. He said that; I didn't.
- Chris L. at "Fishing the Abyss" hauls out the old canard about Hebrew vs. Greek influences and "eastern" vs. "western" ways of thinkingreplete with the obligatory chartin order to admonish us pomophobes. He lightheartedly acknowledges his debt to the West in displaying such a chart. But, Chris: your entire taxonomy, with the neat little categories, is also a product of Western-style thinking. What's more, it looks like a typically "modern" oversimplification to me.
- Bill Burns at "Sawhorse" gives us a nice writeup. He notices the Altoids-style tin at the foot of our blog. I don't think anyone else has ever commented on that. I don't know if it's because all the other graphics here are so dazzling, or because no one ever reads that far down the page. But the tin at the bottom is one of my favorite emblems for this blog.
Speaking of blog-emblems, I did a little work during my vacation last week recoloring and cleaning up our main logo. See what you think:
This time I retained all the different layers of the graphic, making it much easier to do variations. I'm planning to have a new batch of decals made. You'll definitely want one of these babies.
- Tom Pryde is befuddled after reading a comment I made and asks for help. Sure: The point I was making is actually quite simple: the majority of historic mainstream evangelicals left the older mainline denominations when the leadership of those denominations officially embraced and institutionalized liberal apostasy. That's why evangelical influence in the 20th century came primarily from independent churches and smallish, mostly newer, denominations. In other words, evangelicals were originally separatists.
Now, before anyone reads too much into that or tries to argue against it, read my actual words carefully once more: I was very specific. I was describing the kind of separatism practiced by most evangelicals up through 1950 or thereabouts; I wasn't speaking of secondary separation, which is what most fundamentalists today are conditioned to think of as the only "real" kind of separatism.
- Tim Suffield has been studying imputation. He's looking for more posts on that subject.
- F. Scott Petersen has a great summary of Dan Phillips's post on inerrancy.
- Meanwhile, Mike Perrigoue joins the ranks of people heaping superlatives on our Dan.
- Mathew Sims posts a list of high-quality links, noting, among other things, that Frank Turk rocks.
Well, OK. Mathew said Frank "rocks the boat." That's close enough, isn't it?
According to Technorati, there are a lot more links I could BlogSpot from the past week. I'm guessing nearly all of them are raves for Daniel, who wrote the bulk of what was posted here this past week. (Thanks again, Dan.) However, I'm out of time, and if you've taken time to click on all the above links, you prolly should be doing something else now, too.