Trick or Treat

  10/29/14 , by Dissidens, Categories: Evangelical culture

Timed to coincide with the infernal holidays I’m sure, “a group of internationally-renowned scholars of evangelicalism” will discuss the future of that particular blight on popular spirituality. Back when we first peeked into the future, we consulted astrologers, witches, mediums, crystal ball gazers, and eviscerators of goats, but now we’re much more biblical about this: we host a discussion by internationally-renowned scholars.


They shall speak to us of things to come.


If you are anywhere near Wheaton College tomorrow at 7, you are free to drop in on these internationally-renowned scholars (Dr. David Bebbington , Dr. Nathan O. Hatch , Dr. Mark Hutchinson, Dr. Mark A. Noll, and Dr. Grant Wacker) and learn whatever it is that has been peeped and muttered unto them.


A reception will follow, apparently.

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  10/20/14 , by Dissidens, Categories: Evangelical culture

Should Fundamentalists be permitted to build and operate schools?

Seriously, if a school is a place where the learning, insights, judgments, and traditions of one generation are explained and passed to the next, why should we expect Fundamentalists to operate schools? Isn’t that unfair to them?

Might it not be preferable for one to get his education at a school, and then get his scruples, convictions, eccentricities, qualms, suspicions, idiosyncrasies, whimsicalities, presuppositions, fads, resentments, prejudices, and superstitions at a place more sensitive to the rages and frenzies of the moment? The sort of thing we can all witness here?

Perhaps American religion might be significantly improved if we used schools for the purposes intended and used summer camps for religious instruction. This is where yoots could be taught valuable gifts of the Spirit like popsicle stick crafts, horseback riding, canoeing, zip-line riding, no-point Calvinism, volleyball, tubing, Arsh music, acting like an idiot for the glory of God, skit-watching…. 

And at the end of the week a campfire could be built at a safe location and the yoots, brimming with the excitement of the previous six days, could be cajoled into throwing twigs on the fire as a symbol of their deep religious commitments and as a public vow of cultic solidarity.

Give this some serious thought.


Whose Hopes and Dreams?

  10/17/14 , by Dissidens, Categories: Uncategorized


“Northland International University, an evangelical Christian school located in Dunbar, Wisconsin, will become the first campus outside of Louisville for Boyce College, Southern’s undergraduate school. The action is effective Aug. 1, 2015.”


This is important not just for Southern Seminary and not just for the cause of Christian higher education, but for the cause of Christ and the future of the Southern Baptist Convention. This is exactly the kind of development that Southern Baptists should celebrate. In particular, Southern Baptists should be both humbled and deeply encouraged by the fact the trustees of Northland entrusted the future of their hopes and dreams in Southern Seminary and Boyce College precisely because of the theological commitments made at such cost by the Southern Baptist Convention.


So did the Northland International Overarching Entity ever reclaim authentic Fundamentalism?


Foreign Gods

  10/07/14 , by Dissidens, Categories: Uncategorized


The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.


I have never believed that travel broadens the mind: some of the most narrow-minded people I know travel a lot. Politicians travel a lot; where does it get them? Putting a narrow mind on a boat or a plane for a couple of days does not make it broad.

But I do agree with St. Augustine that travel at least invites us to turn the page.

I and the helpmeet spent a fair amount of time keeping it between the ditches of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. Friends kept it between the ditches going to a couple of perfectly respectable canyons and one grand canyon, which, by the way, is an international experience. I heard more languages on the canyon rim than I ever did visiting the UN building in my home town. A girl from Paris had me take her picture at Mather Point, and a couple of Arabs had me take their picture overlooking Sedona. Interestingly, no wars ensued.

But nothing beats putting your head on your own pillow, and I have done that for several nights now and I think the experience is wonderful.

Now we are back home reading the gibberings of evanjellicles on a regular basis and having our minds broadened with the worship of very strange deities of very different natives.

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Whatsoever Things Are Pure?

  09/30/14 , by Dissidens, Categories: Evangelical culture

Evangelicals, again, speak when the most important thing we should hear from them is the silence of the tomb.

Here C. Michael Patton, president of Credo House Ministries, expresses his profound knowledge of the human heart and good and evil.


There are other issues involved, I know. Is this or that evil behavior gratuitous? Is the entertainment meant to be historical? These are all issues to think about. But what I have found is that these three questions cover most issues, whether it be movies, songs, or any other way we engage in entertainment.


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