This and That 12-02-11

Why I Signed the Petition to Remove Chuck Phelps from the Board of Bob Jones University – Worse, far worse, is the sad plight of the silent victims within the system who have heard the message loud and clear: don’t bring up anything that may besmirch the image of one of our good old boys. We care not if you were raped. As a child.  Bob Jones University with its latest position statement seems to be putting all its effort into defending a friend while paying an obligatory lip service to the victim of rape. Despite the numerous scandals in educational institutions, particularly the recent Joe Paterno scandal, the university doesn’t even have the good public relations sense to proportion their public letter in a way that even pretends to care about the victim. Even had I been a devoted fan of Bob Jones University and Chuck Phelps I think I would have had the sense to tell them that this was a disastrous PR move. Many have commented on the amount of space given to the defense of Chuck Phelps versus the space allotted to outrage on behalf of — and sympathy for — the helpless victim of rape. Furthermore, there is no indication anywhere in the letter that they asked the victim about her experience. Of course, I know for a fact that the did not. – Bob Bixby

Why We Must Be Unapologetically Theological – If I’m not mistaken, our church has a reputation for being quite theological.  I know this is why many people have come to our church.  And I imagine it’s why some people have left, or never checked us out in the first place.  But no church should apologize for talking about and loving theology.  Now–and this is an important caveat–if we are arrogant with our theology, or if our doctrinal passion is just about intellectual gamesmanship, or we are all out of proportioned in our affections for less important doctrines, then may the Lord rebuke us. We should not be surprised theology gets a bad name in such circumstances.  But when it comes to thinking on, rejoicing in, and building a church upon sound biblical truth, we should all long for a richly theological church.  I could cite many reasons for preaching theologically and many reasons for wanting to pastor a congregation that loves theology. – Kevin DeYoung

Of Course – We spiritualize our self-poisoning, because we are poisoned. We think we have to be hip to this new band, or play that video-game so that we can be relevant, so we can reach the lost. The truth is, the lost are reaching us. As Charles Swindoll once said, “If you drop a white glove in the mud, the mud doesn’t get all ‘glovey.’” The world doesn’t need us to become more like them. “Gritty, edgy, real” is just Christian for “geek who wants to fit it.” – R.C. Sproul, Jr.

Bachmann: I Would Close Our (Non-Existent) Embassy In Iran – According to a tweet from NBC News’ Jamie Novogrod, Bachmann responded to the recent raiding of the British embassy in Iran, by saying that if she was President, she would close down the U.S. embassy there.  There’s just one problem: The U.S. has not had an embassy in Iran ever since the Iranian hostage crisis, when revolutionaries from the budding Islamic state held 52 Americans for 444 days. Indeed, frustration over this helped bring down Bachmann’s bete noire Jimmy Carter by defining his presidency as weak. The two countries have not had official diplomatic relations since that time. Furthermore, President Obama’s short-lived offer of outreach “without preconditions” was a critical part of Republican attacks against his foreign policy.

Jesus Has AIDS – When we stand in judgment, we’ll stand, Jesus tells us, accountable for how we recognized him in the trauma of those who don’t seem to bear the glory of Christ at all right now. We see Jesus now, by faith, in the sufferings of the crack baby, the meth addict, the AIDS orphan, the hospitalized prodigal who sees his ruin in the wires running from his veins.  I wonder how many of us will hear the words from our Galilean emperor, “I had AIDS and you weren’t afraid to come near me.” – Russell Moore

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