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Archive for the ‘Contextualization’ Category

Best Links of the Week

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The End of Church Planting?  Interesting article that isn’t as provocative as the title.  Definitely worth a read and a place at the table for missiological theory of church planting, challenging the dominant paradigm of the entrepreneurial paid pastor/planter.

How to use rewards/frequent-flyer credit cards to create a self-fulfilling profit loop (buy certain gold coins, get rewards/miles, deposit gold in bank, pay off credit card with gold deposited into bank).

Third Millennium Ministries has its own iPhone and Android apps.  The content of ThirdMill is truly top shelf.  I am of the opinion that Third Mill is probably one of the most important ministries of our time and all on a shoestring budget.  If you care at all about the Gospel and the future of the church you ought to donate to them.  I am thankful that there are actually some forward thinking strategists that are creating excellent scalable content capable of penetrating that glaring lack of theological training of pastors worldwide.

The Decline of the Nuclear Family.  Some pretty staggering statistics and commentary on the status of family in the U.S.

Mayim Bialik (Blossom, Amy Farrah Fowler) of Big Bang Theory is actually a PhD and published in Neuroscience (HT: BL)

Mortgage companies are still ‘robo-signing’

Centrist Tom Coburn has an interesting debt proposal – I was definitely not expecting a proposal from one of the ‘Gang of Six’

77 year old Congressman confronts gun wielding intruder

An interesting piece giving some provocative thoughts regarding the Cosmological Argument

There are several layers of awesome to this Pepsi ad (coming from a staunch Coca-Cola fan):

Best Links of the Week

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Click picture for higher resolution image (HT: JT)

Parents, Don’t Dress Your Daughters Like Tramps

Front Porch Hack – Brilliant idea about turning your garage into your front porch for the purpose of creating intentional Gospel inroads into your neighborhood (HT:  JT)

Tax compliance costs $.30 on every taxpayer $1

In order to balance our current budget we would have to tax at the following rates:  Corporate 88%, Highest Income 88%, Middle Bracket 63%, and Lowest 25%.  Some of our precious entitlements have to go, this is insanity.  The sad part is that this would only balance the budget for this year and not even touch the $14,000,000,000,000.00 debt and trillion in compounding annual interest.

S+P says 33% chance they will downgrade U.S. debt from AAA

Mubarak has a heart attack during questioning

Wisconsin man finds live bomb in the wall of his own home

Best University ROI – Glad to see University of Florida yielded a 14.6% ROI.

U.S. Navy tests laser weapon on boat

iPhone keeps log of everywhere you go

You couldn’t pay me enough to do this job:

RC Car powered by soda can rings:

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Absolutely fascinating article inside the world of custom scholarly papers.  This is a very well-written piece that is quite controversial and provocative.  I would be curious to hear your thoughts.

Article on the really creepy mythic creature, Lilith… anyone still want to go to the Lilith Fair?

Disturbing implications of toll-gated internet opened up by recent FCC proposal.  This is a very very bad idea.  I already hate paying money for data movement over cell phone networks.  I cannot imagine having to pay for tiered internet.  Suffice to say I have a deep disdain for the FCC.

Richard Cohen has a nice even-keeled op-ed piece on the whole WikiLeaks debacle.

WSJ article on woman who has successfully staved off foreclosure for 25 years!

Great interview with writer Scott Patterson, author of The Quants.  An excellent read for anyone interested in game theory, arbitrage, and applied mathematics intersection with economics and finance.

Orlando International Airport is considering dumping TSA screeners.

Pretty crazy photos of some “super-cell” storms.

In what has to be one of the strangest ‘stories’ in a long time… it appears that some of the members of Insane Clown Posse are self-identifying as “evangelical Christians,” and say they have been that way for a long time.  This has to be some kind of PR stunt or maybe the lack of an evangelical worldview is really that bad.

Google jumping into the foray of the ebook market.

Widespread government cover-up over TARP fund allocation.

Pretty cool video statistical look at life expectancy and wealth over last 200 years from the Freakonomics guys:

NorthPoint’s iBand…

Best Links of the Week

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Provocative piece entitled, “Artists Build the Church.”  Aesthetics without a doubt have been marginalized in the church.  Another work that should be brought into this discussion is Hans Urs von Balthasaar’s Trilogy on “The Glory of the Lord.”  Shame on Protestants for letting a Catholic write probably the best treatment of aesthetics (alongside Wolsterstorff’s work).   God’s holiness and God’s glory are at the core of God’s character.  Hence, art and aesthetics are at the very center of our Christian faith.

4th Amendment Underclothes – metallic print protest clothing.  For those of you unaware the 4th amendment to the U.S. Constitution states the following:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Department of Homeland Security commandeering domain names.

It takes Iran over 30 years to notice Star of David placed on roof of their national airline’s (Iran Air) headquarters.  The building was designed by Israeli architects.

Which Cashback credit cards to use at which retailers/websites.  This was rather helpful.

A number of top shelf scientists publish a cautionary letter regarding the new X-ray machines that has some good scientific concerns that dispel a lot of the misinformation regarding the safety of the new machines.   I think some more substantial science is in order here particularly for the elderly, children, pregnant, and those prone to various cancers on or close to skin (testicular, breast…).

If you haven’t heard yet, there were more WikiLeaks documents released of roughly a quarter million wires principally between emabassies.  Of interest is a large amount of security intel, policy, military strategy, and embarassing details about world government figures.  Of interest, it seems that North Korea did in fact provide Iran with the missile vehicles to launch nuclear warheads.  This is very disconcerting as it means that North Korea likely has the nuclear bomb and rockets to launch them in.

Tony Blair and Christopher Hitchens debate whether Religion is good for the world or not.  I am inclined to think that religion, in the conventional sense of the word, is not good for the world.  I am also unsure what is meant by the word, “good” as well.  I would argue from different angles and presuppositions than Hitchens but likely arrive at similar conclusions.  I would be very happy if every religion based on human self-righteousness would permanently cease.  I don’t think anything is “good” apart from Christ, hence I think that all non-Christocentric religion is bunk.

Flexible, Disposable E-readers?

Should MIT Teach Poetry?”  I have already ranted on here about the affects of removing the Christian worldview on higher education (see post on UCF scandal).   The point is that our Universities have become trade schools.  Further, these trade schools are increasingly more expensive (astronomically expensive compared to inflation rates) while becoming less effective at producing marketable laborers.  For many employers experience is > or = to education.  If one’s education were limited to such a narrow sub-field of a field within a faculty within a college within a University… there is no foundation for the knowledge/building to stand.  Of course MIT should teach poetry.

Congressman Mike Coffman (Rep. Colorado) writes a cogent piece on why not to raise taxes during a recession. (HT: SB)

Best Links of the Week

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NYT infographic on reducing our nations inflated bugdet.  While we are on the subject here are two proposals that inspired the aforementioned infographic:  Fiscal Commission’s Co-Chair Proposal and Illustrative Savings.

There is a fairly large controversy brewing over both the TSAs use of full-body scanners and their substantially more aggressive pat-downs.  I have actually had one of the full-body scans before and poked my head around to see the image (much to the dislike of TSA) and it was pretty invasive.  A man in California got a tape of his encounter with TSA after refusing the scan and getting the new ‘special’ patdown.  He gets arrested and faces substantial fines for warning the TSA employee not to “touch his junk.”

Doug Wilson has a nice piece entitled, “Populism and Common Sense.”

Besides the fact I think morality and atheism are completely incompatible, I like Christopher Hitchens.  Andrew Anthony has a very well-written piece on his current thoughts during his battle with stage-iv cancer.

Most Common Causes of Death in the United States

NY Post has an article on Hookers for Jesus, a ministry seeking to get sex-workers off the streets of Las Vegas.  An interesting read.

Facebook jumping into the email forray.  I wonder if this will end up being part of the ever-expanding wedge between younger and older web-users where younger generations employ Facebook over email to communicate.  Maybe I am a bit out of touch but I fail to see this being very successful for Facebook for anyone older than 22.  Their current message platform is horrendous to work with and often crashes after you have composed substantial portions of text – so much so that before I hit “send” I always copy all of my composed text because I have lost it so many time.

You Suck at PowerPoint.

Comical video which attempts to explain quantitative easing.  I should note there is some misinformation in the video.   The Fed regularly buys/sells assets to change the amount of base money.  However, in this case the amount is specified ($600,000,000,000.00) rather than dealing with overnight interest rates.  Given there are rather alarmingly high amounts of ties between Goldman Sachs and the Fed as well as Goldman Sachs and the Obama administration, it would be an alarming precedent for the Fed to buy its own treasuries from itself.

App of the week:  Google Voice by Google – after months of dragging its feet, apple finally let this app hit the iTunes store.

Ken Block, Ford Fiesta, Awesome:

Best Links of the Week

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Advice for Theological Students” and “More Advice for Theological Students and Pastors” are both absolutely fantastic gems gleaned from Kevin DeYoung.

Developers Trying To Treat Houses Like Copyright; Want A Cut Of Every Future Resale” and even worse than this, the financial firm pushing this garbage is in the process of securitizing these hidden ‘resale contract covenants.’  No offense, but it is greedy morons like these guys who got us into the whole sub-prime mess.  I am all for free-market economics, but I really hope the free-market (particularly the hedge funds) decides to vote ‘no’ with their feet.

A List of Important Sermons and Articles Worth Reading” (HT:  JT) – this is an excellent excellent list.  There are a good number of these that I have not read.  I am particularly excited about those that I have not read that have multiple commendations.

Nancy Pearcey dissects the affect of secularism on America and its’ disability to provide a cogent response to radical Islam.

Here is also a really good interview with Nancy Pearcey on her new book “Saving Leonardo.”  Coincidentally she also weighs in on James Daveson Hunter’s new book (see next link)

James K. A. Smith’s review of James Daveson Hunter’s “To Change the World

Excellent article in The Atlantic from Jeffrey Goldberg analyzing the likelihood and aftermath of an Israeli preemptive strike against the Iranian nuclear program.

Typewriter robot art… very Philip K. Dick-esque

Self-assembling biological photovolatics

Canadian PhD student creates human powered aircraft with large flapping wings.  One of the craziest things I’ve ever seen.

Pacman with 111 human pixels:

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Eric Metaxas has a great longer piece that is really worthwhile entitled,  Cultural Elites:  The Next Unreached People Group.  I am curious for some of you who have reach Culture Making and To Change the World, how you might respond to Metaxas.

The Eight Kinds of Friendship

Excellent Photos from Iraq

In a very sad story, a priest in Moldova drowned a baby during an infant baptism.

Book Art

Solid interview with Robert Duvall from Christianity Today.  Duvall has some good insight; he remarks that Hollywood does not merely have disdain for Christians, its’ main disdain is for the heartland of America.  Interesting thought.

Michael Bell analyzes recent pew forum study along with a helpful info-graphic.  (HT:  Kevin DeYoung)

Nine old Nintendo Games that can be played straight from the internet with no download required.

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