Monday, July 25, 2005

Around the Theogosphere

I'm busy, busy, busy today, but I wanted to catch up everyone on interesting things being written on the God Blogs the last few days.

First up are Brian at Sycamore and Dan at Cerulean Sanctum. As far as I can tell, they're the only ones who answered the call for my quote meme, which should speak volumes about my pull around here. Brian appeared happy to just experience his first meme tagging, while Dan complains I am keeping him from finishing his great American novel.

Dan further passes the blame to Jared of The Thinklings fame for exacerbating his writer's block. Message to Dan: The perfect cure for writer's block is to imagine the deadline is right now and you will starve if you do not meet the deadline. Nothing like a little heart-stopping panic to get a writer out of the blocks. I envy those people who can write on a schedule. I have to wait on inspiration before filling a page. Unfortunately, my muse is too often the "Muse of Mediocrity" and her companion, "The Muse of Just Get Anything On the Page So We Don't Get Fired." So maybe I'm not the best writer to give advice.

Phillip Johnson perceived my passing reference to him in a post about Harry Potter to be an actual request to respond. Phillip, I was merely admiring the potential for a serious blog storm for the ages, but I appreciate your insight. Typical of professional editors, Phillip proves again and again he should be writing his own words, not doctoring others'. Typical of hack writers, I prove again and again I should be doing something more productive, like digging ditches, but I fancy air conditioning far too much. As long as I can keep at least one employer fooled ... The Pyro did not respond to my quote meme tag, so I will assume he was "irritated" by it and ignored it. With him, in that situation, it's always better to be ignored than to be the subject of a public flaming. Here's a picture of Phillip writing a column. Malcontents and BHT members beware.

On a totally different note, John at Blogotional really likes what iMonk wrote on 1 Corinthians 14. John thinks Michael Spencer practiced good exegesis in his call for orderly worship, and criticism of certain charismatics. I think it's a good piece, too, although I think it also reveals Spencer's apprehension with Charismatics. By relationship, I think it reinforces John's. The piece is a bit confusing, because Spencer seems to be speaking to "seeker sensitive" churches. The seeker movement, by definition, is not charismatic in methodology, and many aren't even charismatic in theology. Some are earnestly cessational. I think the confusion is with the use of a modern worship band. Perhaps Spencer is stretching this out to point out the need not to downplay the gospel? That would be a good point, but again, I think this might be part of a misunderstanding. My perception is he meant his aim at the influence of John Wimber, who promoted signs and gifts and a powerful tool for evangelism, and was a leading member of the church growth movement in the 70s and 80s. Wimber was at one point a proponent of charismatic-style services as a means towards church growth, although I don't believe he ever envisioned the kind of crass marketing-driven systematics in church today. He was a pragmatist, not a marketer. As much as Wimber promoted the use of gifts, and as weird as it might have appeared to onlookers of various Vineyard churches while Wimber was alive, I do not recall Wimber ever promoting or encouraging weirdness. Quite the opposite. He preached about being natural in the charismata and not be weird. Furthermore, "Power Evangelism" was for use outside of the church doors. I'd be interested in a discussion with these intelligent fellows if they are agreeable to one. As a reader, I sometimes feel a disconnect with these two excellent bloggers, because I feel my own faith is being misrepresented. I'm open to criticism, I just want to make sure -- if I am a target, however unintentional -- the criticism is accurate and not based on over-generalized bias.

Rick at The Truth In Dark Times finally debuted his thoughts on worldliness. He has been withholding it and praying on it for some time because he didn't want to be misunderstood. Someone not familiar with Rick or someone who's never had any interaction with him might construe his opinions as legalistic. I've interacted with the man enough to witness his personal humility and the sobriety with which he conducts his faith. At the same time, he takes the Word very seriously, a characteristic worthy of appreciation alone. Take a stroll over to his blog and post a comment or two. It should be an interesting discussion as this series unfolds.

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