Modern Pensées

Reconsidering theology, philosophy, culture, economics, and politics

Posts Tagged ‘Al Mohler

Best Links of the Week

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The Supreme Courts Back Alley Runs Through Philadelphia.”  A story on how Roe v. Wade makes regulating abortion clinics exceedingly difficult and opens the doors for the horrific squalor and infanticide of the clinic in Philadelphia.

Summary of a really interesting survey of evangelicals in the UK.

Billy Graham regrets not steering clear of politics and regrets not spending more time with family.

Mark Sanchez picks his nose and wipes it on his backup QB, video here.  (HT:  Aaron)

Consumer Watchdog and privacy group is raising concerns over close ties between Google, the NSA, and the present federal government.

Christian Astronomy Professor successfully sues the University of Kentucky for religious discrimination against him.

Iran has cleared a major hurdle in the uranium enrichment process.

Solid WSJ report on their murdered reporter Daniel Pearl.

U.S. Taxpayers have footed the $160 million legal bill for the executives of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  Unbelievable and unconscionable.

Government Unions are trying to court the TSA to join their ranks.

Chuck DeGroat continues his series on dealing with difficult people with an excellent piece on dealing with the borderline (passive-aggressive).

Bernanke’s Rally Runs into Headwinds

A fairly thorough dossier on the American mafia.

Check your Munis as a bunch of states are quietly looking at bankruptcy.

Donald Trump has some harsh words on the pomp and show put on for the Chinese president.

Two Italian scientists (with suspect pasts) claim they have successfully found cold fusion.  No offense to my Italian friends, but this is very doubtful.

Double dip in the housing market.

UPDATE:  The appalling story of the Philadelphia abortion doctor who was charged with eight counts of murder, who had squalid conditions and random baby parts in jars… women are coming forward saying that he left them sterile.  Also in this vein, Al Mohler had a good piece on the President’s comments on the Roe v. Wade anniversary speech.

“People are Awesome”:

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Best Links of the Week

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Al Mohler reflects on the life and death of former atheist turned theist, Anthony Flew.

Norway makes “Most Humane Prison.”  Flat screen TVs.  High end design…

22-week Italian baby survives abortion and lives for two days.

Christian preacher arrested for saying that homosexuality is a sin.

Inflation up 2% in March 2010.

Fascinating BBC reader write-in article on 40 ways people still use 3.5″ floppy disks (including the Mexican, Romanian, Panamanian, and British governments).

Ligon Duncan’s  6 exhortations to the pastors of the next generation. (HT: JT)

All of the audio from last weeks Advance 2010 conference.

The Supreme Court might be “Protestant-less” for the first time ever.

Dollar re-designed by a graphic designer… its pretty awesome.

How to Survive a 35,000 Foot Fall.”

Find out how wealthy you are compared to the rest of the world.

We are Wall Street and We are More Vicious Than Dinosaurs.”  Well-written, pardon the authors triumphalism.

Infographic about where all our tax dollars go.

MIT Unveils Solar Cells Printed on Paper

Iconic photos from the Vietnam War. (HT: Challies)

12 most awkward family photos Mother’s Day edition. 5, 6, 8, and 9 are particularly awkward… and what is that animal in #8?

Best Links of the Week

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Woman decides not to abort child because of Tim Tebow Superbowl commercial.

Keith Mathison of Ligonier recommends some books on the Person of Christ.

Thai protestors pour out 132 gallons of their own blood on the steps of government headquarters.

Al Mohler’s list of the top ten books pastors should read in 2010.

Episcopal Church Ordains Second Gay Bishop

Mark Driscoll gives a brief biography of St. Patrick.

What a Happy Meal from McDonald’s looks like after one year.

Best Links of the Week

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Quite simply one of the most amazing stories I have ever read.  Perseverance squared.

First Things on G.K. Chesterton’s Orthodoxy as an anti-dote to modernity.

NY Times article on a Polish Neo-Nazi converts to Orthodox Judaism

Russian President Medvedev calls for Russian Olympic officials to resign.

USA Today article on USPS proposed 5 day delivery week… is this the beginning of the end for the USPS.

NASA reporting that the Chilean Earthquake shortened the day and shifted the earth’s axis.

Amazing photos from the Indian/Hindu festival of Holi.

Image Journal’s, Top 100 Books of the Century.

Rep. Stupak on Abortion Funding in ObamaCare 2.0.

For those with book/library lust, check out video of R.C. Sproul, Ligon Duncan, Al Mohler, Mark Dever, John MacArthur, and C.J. Mahaney’s personal libraries.

Ice found on moon.

The new face of the 2nd Amendment is an elderly African American man.

Why a Salad Costs More Than a BigMac.

Interesting article on why to not use PowerPoint when preaching.

Thoughts on Evangelicalism Past, Present, and Future… Part 6

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Our brief look backward at the roots of evangelism has brought us to the last two decades. I think like almost any period in history there are encouraging and discouraging elements… reason for optimism and reason for pessimism.  For me, the last two decades have been more of a cause for optimism than pessimism.

The main cause for optimism is growth of the Reformed side of evangelicalism, combined with the weakening of the evangelical populist side that had dominated conservative Protestantism for most the 20th century.

There are several factors that have contributed to the weakening of the populist group.  First, the populist group had grown to borrow heavily from the culture-at-large, namely, from consumerism and from the methodology and structure of the corporate (capitalist) business world.  The paradigm of the 150-300 person local church became a thing of the past and the megachurch with slick production, smooth communication, and programs for kids of all ages.  Pastors became de facto CEOs.  Attendees were/could be anonymous.  Community was based on affinity groups based on generation or interest.  Upon first glance, it appears to be what the culture wanted…  Diet Jesus:  little/no accountability (or church discipline), worship where that draws attention away from self, preaching that is heavy on story and light on the challenging words of the Bible.  I am painting a rather pessimistic picture of the megachurch movement here, but I think in many examples it is more than fair.  In my view, this kind of church model cannot be sustained and will either die a slow death or ultimately implode.

Is it bad to pray against classical Dispensationalism?

End Times Charts!

Another factor contributing to the weakening of evangelical populism is the death of classical Dispensationalism.  When Y2K came and uneventfully passed it was the final nail in the coffin of classical Dispensationalism.  Surprise, surprise, God doesn’t follow the Gregorian calendar or your end-times charts.  Between no seminary teaching classical Dispensationalism anymore and Y2K this led people to start thinking differently about the millenia and drinking from different wells, reading a bit more broadly.

I think real Christians want real preaching of the Bible, with real community, and to make a real impact where God has them.  I think this desire has led to a large scale movement away from evangelical populism towards churches with

John Piper

John Piper

expository preaching, church discipline, historic confessions, and smaller size.  These churches are almost unilaterally Reformed in their lineage.  I think the resurgence in Reformed theology is primarily not a Presbyterian movement (that is nothing to diminish the real growth here), but predominantly Baptist.  This is due in large part to the influence of John Piper, Al Mohler, Mark Driscoll, and several others.  The Baptists have their roots in the Puritans who had deep roots in Reformed Theology.  This resurgence is not without its weaknesses and we shall talk about this later.

One of the more nefarious aspects of evangelicalism in the 20th century was the neglect of the everyday mission field of America.  We have already explored why evangelicals receded from cultural engagement as a equal and opposite reaction against the imbalances of the Social Gospel.  However, evangelicals were equally imbalanced in not engaging the culture with words and deeds.  In the last twenty years we have seen a resurgence in churches caring for the cities that they live in by seeing them as a mission field.  I think the missional church movement has been by-and-large very positive (minus the more radical emergent church voices).

Thrice

Thrice

There has been a resurgence in Christians making diverse solid music, see:  Thrice, Cool Hand Luke, Blindside, Appleseed Cast, Denison Marrs, Reach Records, Reformed Rap, Sufjan Stevens, and Mineral.  In addition there has been a resurgence of Christians making good art, across multiple mediums, see:  Makoto Fujimura, Marilynne Robinson (also here), and Darren Doane.  There has been a resurgence in Christians in academia:  Alvin Plantinga, Richard Swinburne, Rodney Stark, Dallas Willard, Phillip Johnson and James Davison Hunter.

This concludes our look at the past of evangelicalism… up next, we will at some potential future trends.

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