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Hey, Blog Explosion Members! Welcome to the Pew. This is a pretty simple to understand blog -- everything is written to dispel various stereotypes that people have about evangelical Christians. Of course, I may actually reinforce some stereotypes, but that's OK, too. Stick around, if you're REALLY open minded!
I'm having a hard time coming up with something insightful, witty, or new to say, so I decided to cruise through the blog at Christianity Today, and add my own pithy comments on the news. Unlike CT, though, I've already registered with all the "registration required" sites, remember? Username: either piewview or firstname.lastname@example.org, password is blogger42. It's that easy! (If this doesn't work on any newspaper sites you find, let me know, and I'll fix it.)
The UMC has defrocked their resident lesbian priest -- first time since 1987. Is it just me, or does the term 'defrocked' just seem a bit awkward in this context? I can honestly say that the Southern Baptist Convention has never had to do anything about a lesbian minister -- not allowing women as pastors kinda eliminates that problem, doesn't it?
The UCC (to continue the acronymical insanity) has a new commercial. Maybe you've heard about it. ABC, CBS, and NBC won't air it. Now, I don't like what they're saying -- I know of no evangelical church that would turn people away because of their sexual orientation. Now, if they wanted to be married in the church, join the church, or minister in the church, there may be problems. See, Jesus said something like "Go, and sin no more" once, if I recall correctly. We don't condemn sinners -- the One without sin has the only authority to do that. But we can not condone their sin -- that is also clear from Scripture. I think maybe part of the problem is that people identify themselves too much with what they do, rather than who they are. AND, I think that the Church often doesn't do enough about sin in it's own ranks. I remember Jesus saying something about a beam in the eye, too.
I really wish this story would go away. I think it's a stupid idea, and I think the Convention is overstepping their bounds by expecting people to pull their kids out of public education. Maybe we should be training people to go into the schools and be a positive influence. Maybe our youth ministers should focus more on discipleship and less on pizza parties (and yes, I know there are awesome youth ministers out there -- I know several of them from Southern). I salute parents who choose private schools. I salute parents who homeschool. I salute parents who are involved in their kids' public education. The key is to be involved, folks. There, I think I've beat that horse enough.
One sample of the many "Holiday Controversy" type stories. I agree with Pseudo-Polymath on this topic, I think. Let them have their "secular holiday" (now THERE'S an oxymoron!) in December. But they have to stop calling it Christmas, and leave us alone to celebrate the birth of our Savior. I end up stressed at this time of year, over what to get people, if I've gotten them enough, and all that garbage. It's easy to lose focus on what's important. Maybe it's time to reclaim Christmas as our own -- they don't really get it anyway. I think our Jewish brethren have the right idea -- how much Chanuka-related marketing do you see? Very little in many parts of the country. THAT would be refreshing.
And as we're fighting our own culture wars, our brethren in Europe have seemingly been pushed too far. Unfortunately, they may have been snoozing too long. Check out this Guardian story, and think about how close we have come, and how close we still may come, to a society just like this. Cultural engagement can help avert this; of course, if the left was really tolerant, they'd never have attacked us for our religious beliefs in the first place.
In case you were wondering why all of us evangelical-type peole got so politically active this election, Alan Boraas at the Anchorage Daily News has the answer. It's not concern for our rights as citizens. It's not a desire to make the country a better place. It's not even because we're all brainwashed. It's all because of the rapture. Read the article, and think about how sad it is that a professor of anthropology has absolutely no clue about the topic he's writing about. NOTHING WE DO CAN MAKE THE RAPTURE HAPPEN ANY FASTER!!!!!!! A good majority of evangelical Christians don't believe in the rapture anyway -- what motivates them????? No answers, because that line of questioning tends to defeat stereotypes of Christians. Too bad, the article had a little promise. And I hold out little hope that anything will change people's minds. Don't confuse them with facts, their minds are made up. And they say we're anti-intellectual.
Now I'm going to head over to GetReligion, and see what I should have said about all these articles.