It's here! All 50 wonderful posts!
THE CHRISTIAN CARNIVAL......SOAP OPERA VERSION
I have always been fascinated by soap operas, those afternoon dramas of angst. So, I thought it might be a bit of fun to classify the posts under the program of which they reminded me.
With 50 posts, this is a long one--so grab some refreshments, read through, click through, and enjoy.
ALL MY CHILDREN
*Baptising infants can be problematic to many evangelicals. What happens if you grow up as a Southern Baptist and now are attending a Presbyterian church? Megan has some important questions to ask at her blog, Half Pint House. It’s time for her “half-pints” (check out their cute pictures at the top left of her blog) to get baptized. After wrestling with this issue, she is getting a bit of peace about it....from....well, you have to read Paedo Perspective to find out from whom she is getting her peace. Well, yes it’s God, but also someone else too.
*Cerulean Sanctum is one of the blogs I visit regularly and his post, The Christian Walk in a Nutshell just could be a catalyst for various denominations and groups to unify. Dan basically takes three group views: the Jesus-emphasis folks, the Scripture-emphasis folks and the Holy Spirit-emphasis folks, and shows how we need a balance of all three. Or as Rodney King said, “Can’t we all just get along?”
*In our cozy lives here, we don’t always think about the suffering going on in the rest of the world, especially among the children. Amanda of Wittingshire reminds us that there are Christians giving up their lives here to meet the overwhelming needs of these often sick and dying children in other lands. Read about some of these heroes and how they do what they can to relieve the suffering, often at their own peril, in her post, Elsewhere.
*Cwv at Christianity is Jewish answers the question "Why does everyone seem to hate Christians and Jews?" Using an important verse in Genesis, the implications of that passage is discussed in light of the former question. To find out what verse that is and its relation to the question, you just must read his post, The First Gospel.
AS THE WORLD TURNS
*Heather at Madame Rubies points out that human logic and reasoning don't always get the job done in her post, Trust and Obey. Maybe God knows something we don’t?
*I’m currently reading a best-selling book in which the author is trying to figure out what makes the "red-staters" tick. He sees a lot of evangelicals in the political process. He tells about a creationist conference in which he makes fun of the presenters. Hey guy! I hate ta tell ya….but we have some top scientists on our team now too. But what happens when someone turns the tables on the Darwinians and points out that they are believing incredulous ideas on their side as the very creationsits they accuse. Then you must read what Dick at Viewpoint wrote in his post entitled,
Argument From Personal Incredulity.
*Joshua at In the Agora describes the move on the part of many evangelicals toward a more environmentally friendly view of the earth, instead of the dominion, exploitive view in past ages. OK—-guess what percentage of evangelicals in a poll last year support STRICT environmental regulations? Well, you’ll just have to read Joshua’s informative post, On borrowed land to find out.
*Lawrence Summers, President of Harvard, raised a ruckus recently with his remarks about the differences between men and women. At Fructus Ventris, the blog discusses this and presents a very interesting view at the end of the post entitled, Summers' Remarks Supported by Some Experts
THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL
*This next post will knock your socks off. Here is a sampling.
"With some exceptions, Christians looking at public issues are faced with religion-based information in two groups. First, biblical teaching on spiritual life and personal growth that does not attempt to address public issues. And second, political discourse that starts with political philosophy then seeks biblical proof-texting."
Oh boy—-I can’t wait to read the comments at this blog. This is going to be great! He is dealing with so many vital issues here. So what is it about? James at StonesCryOut has done a post entitled,
Evangelical First Things in Public Life: 12 Things We Should Expect of Evangelicals.
*Tom Wolfe’s latest book, I Am Charlotte Simmons, has garnered a lot of discussion and controversy. Phil at Collected Miscellany points out that there actually are people like Charlotte Simmons, although many today would like you to think that isn’t so. Read Phil’s review of the Tournament of Books reviewers’ review at Charlotte Simmons in the Tournament of Books.
*Where should we put our church? Terry at Pruitt Communications gives us several possible scenarios and their implications with this most interesting post, Strategic Ground: Series On Withdrawing From Society.
*Yikes! I hope spunkyhomeschool mom doesn’t hit me over the head for the soap opera theme. Seriously, she has some very good things to say about how to control what your child watches on TV. Her solution is presented in
Don’t Control the Remote…Cultivate an Appetite. And just wait until you find out what she does. Frankly, I think this is a must read for parents.
*Upon Matt’s wife’s return from doing tsunami relief in Southern India, Matt makes several observations about the continuing effort his church is making at St Gabriel's Tsunami Relief Blog
They came with $50,000 which they thought was a lot. But after seeing the extent of the devastation and poverty, they had to make some tough decisions about exactly where the money would go. So who did they decide to help? Find out at Partial Telling of a Tremendous Story. And what really blew me away—-and I think this is an absolutely excellent example for the church and Christian ministries at large—is they accounted for every cent of the %50,000. And I mean every cent. These people are truly the "Bold and the Beautiful."
*For the past few years I’ve been on a crusade to encourage those Christians "aging" to stop with the botox and the face lifts already and get on with the process gracefully. Diane B. at Borgard Blog has written a superb post in a similar vein. Kudos to Diane and her post, Beauty.
DAYS OF OUR LIVES
*You put water in three pots and bring the water in all three to boil. Then you dump in raw carrots in one, raw eggs in another, and coffee grounds in the third pot. OK---so what happens in the three pots? Give up? Find out at Sharing Spirit as Kim shows us that conflict is a part of life but if we ignore the resolution of those conflicts, we miss some important lessons. Read her post, Resolving Conflict.
*I was majorly touched as I read The Mountain, The Pit, Grace and Reconciliation at
Another Man's Meat.
Phil has done a very well-written account of how God's grace was revealed to him on the mountain top and in the pit. And....along with his personal story, he weaves in the stories of both Job and Abraham.
*I’m always interested in what younger pastors are thinking. Well, younger than I am, which probably means 80% of most pastors...:) So, over the past few months, I’ve been intrigued to follow much of what Brad is posting at his blog, 21st Century Reformation. Lately, he is talking about the church as community and that community as a witness to the secular community as an agent of change. This post, Church as Prophetic Witness, is a part of that series and takes a look at our worldview regarding the role of the church in God's program and how it relates to our early church experiences.
*What is it like to be a fish? What is it like to be a fisherman? Violet of promptings has written a cute poem in her post, fishing that answers the question, "Exactly what did Jesus mean when He said He would make us fishers of men?"
*I guarantee that this post will stir a bit of controversy. Parableman tackles the subject of slavery and asks if slavery is ever a good thing in his post, Slavery and Christianity. He points out that the most frequent references to slavery are
about our slavery to Christ. Also the Torah restrictions on slavery make
ancient Israel's slavery a very different institution from American slavery.
These points help support the overall argument of the series, that the Bible
does not endorse wrongful slavery but that not all slavery is in principle
*Ron at Northernburbsblog entered into a dialogue with an agnostic. He answers four questions that the agnostic asks which reminds me of the same four that so many non-believers ask. Read how Ron answers these very important questions at Answering Not Crunchy's Call.
*OK..I’ll admit it. Forgiveness is one of my weak points. So, it’s always good to read posts on the subject to remind me to keep working on this issue. A Penitent Blogger writes a short but very effective post on this subject in Haven’t forgiven enough.
*Question of the day: Did Adam and Eve have an immune system intact before the Fall? Martin, a college science professor, at Sun and Shield tackles this question in his post, The Fall and the immune system>. He also discusses whether good germs and bacteria were present before the Fall. And if not, when and where did they come from?
*I’m rather surprised that I haven’t read more from Christians about animal transplants in humans. Catez at Allthings2all tackles this in her post, Xenotransplants: Are Pig Cells in Humans the Answer?. At the end of the post she asks if anyone has a Biblical perspective on this. I know I will be checking back often to see if anyone answers this question as I too want a resolution to this topic from a Scriptural perspective.
*Jim at A Nutt’s View shines a light on Psalm 119:105. There is one part of his post that really hit home to me. He asks how you would react, if when you were in school, you knew everything that would happen to you later in life. You absolutely have to read what he says he would have done. This great post is entitled, A Lamp Unto My Feet.
*When our public servants display their Christian character and beliefs in their work, it’s certainly something to write about as Doug has done at Belief Seeking Understanding. His post, Jeff Johnson - Faith And Public Service, describes an interview with a candidate for Minnesota Attorney General and how he weaves his Christian faith into public life.
*Agent Tim has been on special assignment to investigate fellow blogger Adrian Warnock’s simple gospel. In To Die For, Agent Tim accepts nine of the simple gospel’s points but....oh....that tenth one. To find out what the tenth one is, you will simply have to be an agent too and investigate this post yourself.
*Recently, I’ve been wresting with "Why do we pray?" It seems that I’m not the only one who is thinking about this topic. The bloke in the outer has been thinking about it too. In his post, What is the Real Purpose of Prayer, he asks if it is about changing things, or is it about changing people, in particular, the people who pray?
*Why is blogging the new way to go? Weapons of Warfare gives us the dangers and the delights of effective blogging in his post, The Point Of It All.
*Here is an interesting question. When practicing human rights, is a humanistic approach better, or a theistic one? Donald at
Back of the Envelope gets into the discussion between two other bloggers in his post, Humanism and Human Rights. The last paragraph really caught my eye. After reading it I asked myself, “What really is our rationale for helping people? The humanist says because they are human. However, if someone is disabled, are they “less human?” Is this perhaps where humanism, might break down?" Donald makes an excellent point here.
*Proverbs says 29:18 (KJV) says,
Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. Mark at pseudopolymath reflects on this verse and The Vision Thing.
*A lot of us bloggers share the concerns of Jeff the Baptist as to who our evangelical spokesmen (or women) should be. In his post, The Falwell Factor, he makes a very interesting comment at the end: Is there someone else who can do better? Can we do better?
*Many of us grew up in more liberal churches where we were told that if we were "good," we would go to heaven. David at A Physicist's Perspective shares How I became a Christian, Part I. Boy, does his testimony sound like mine.
*If one goes back historically to how we got into this mess of the courts legislating instead of judiciating, one would study the defining case, Marbury vs. Madison. Mike at theJesusfreak takes us back there and then propels us forward to the Dred Scott decision and finally Roe vs. Wade. In What is the Christians responsibility in government? Mike asks the important questions, should Christians be involved in government? Should we submit to the governing authorities in America? Who are the Governing authorities in America? What can we as Christians do to change America for the better and for the glory of God?
*At times we are quick to judge those around us. Dory at Wittenberg Gate reminds us that before we jump to erroneous conclusions, we might wish to consider The Unknown Factor.
*The "Young and the Restless" modern Christian may not always wish to learn about what their predecessors said. But, hey! The dead guys are a part of the Body of Christ too. Who are the "dead guys?" In Know Your Dead Guys, Rebecca of Rebecca Writes talks about the entire Body of Christ throughout the ages and challenges us to listen to some of the things these dead guys said and wrote when they were alive
*I am going to secretly admit that when I first read this post at The Bible Archive, I thought perhaps this blogger had been out in the sun too long. Then I realized what he was doing...:) It's actually a neat literary device and drove the point home extremely well. And just what is that point? In Worshipping On Mountains our blogger gives us an example of what silly things can happen if we use only a deductive method of Bible study.
*This week the Supreme Court of the United States will make an historic decision.
Cindy of Notes in the Key of Life
asks this important question of us:
"Why should Christians be vocal about allowing the Ten Commandments to remain on display?" She quotes some of the leading Christian attorneys dealing with this case in her post, Why Should the Ten Commandments Be Displayed?. One of the lawyers quoted was interviewed by Cindy herself. A must read!
ONE LIFE TO LIVE
The Terri Schiavo blogathon was held last week and we have some posts about that subject.
*Karen Marie at From the Anchor Hold has an excellent suggestion for you and me. In her post, Ways to keep what's happening to Terri Schaivo and her family
from happening to you, she has the best discussion of a Living Will and Directives that I think I’ve ever heard. I believe you will certainly want to read what she says.
*At Metal of Heaven, David has written something that I’ve been haranguing about for years. We re not all evangelists! You’ve just got to read his great post,
Contrarian View From the Pew: A team game. You men will really love this post as David makes great sports analogies to make his point. Or maybe I should say—he hits his point to home base.
*Christian news services and blogs seem to be ablaze with fury over the movie Million Dollar baby. A good friend of the Ales Rarus blog owner, an MD/PhD student with a knack for bioethics, has written an intelligent defense of the flick, which Ales Rarus has posted on his behalf at In Defense of Million Dollar Baby.
*Lee at Capt Trekker talks about Terri Schiavo and Million Dollar Baby. Two items caught my attention. The first one is about Lee which you will understand readily when you read the post. Second, at the end of the post is one of my all-time favorite quotes. It is the famous one from Martin Niemoller, one of the leaders of the anti-Nazi Confessing Church Movement. And boy do I agree with Lee that this might be relevant to both the Schiavo case and the Million Dollar Baby dilemma.
*Is it Christian to support the death penalty? Oh boy! Now we’ve opened Pandora’s box now. Nick at NickQueen.com tackles this very difficult dilemma. I’m not going to give away what he says in his post, The Death Penalty. But it is short and really to the point; and I think it will leaves us thinking all during the coming week.
By the way, Nick, our Christian Carnival founder and guru, has branched out to showcase new bloggers. You might wish to check out Out of the Wilderness Showcase to see his interviews with these new bloggers and their exciting blogs.
*The paradox named Hunter S. Thompson took his life recently. William at Beyond The Rim writes a poem about Hunter’s life in A Life in the Key of Lost.
PASSIONS(My intention here is not in the sexual sense, but in the emotional/spirtual sense)
*I am very left-brained. That means that I am ultra-analytical and logical. And, as most left-brainers, I am art-challenged. That is the politically correct term for "I can’t draw." I find that most pastors and teachers are like me which makes me happy. But unfortunately, this makes it uncomfortable for those who are not like me. When I read not just any song and dance, it was utterly amazing. I cannot even begin to explain what Joy of karagraphy, does. You’ll just have to read it. But I will say that I bet Joy is a right-brainer. And to those of you who also are right-brained, you will absolutely love this post. Oh by the way, it’s about 2 Peter 1. But you will never read an account like this.
*There is a problem in the church which almost nobody in the church is talking about from what I gather. However, I find that this is a hot topic on email discussion lists, Internet forums and Christian blogs. What is it? Well, I am going to tease you and say you must read Rick’s post, What's wrong with Church? at Brutally Honest to find out.
*This post really hits close to home for me as I knew Bob Pierce’s daughter well. She wrote a book about his ministry in which she tells the toll his absences took on their family. Bonnie at Off the top relates this and asks in her post, Whose heart is broken?. What price should the ministry exact and how can we keep a balance?
*Bill at Walloworld tackles the theme, “How should a Christian engage the film and theater world?” In his post, Film, Theater, and the Church, he asks if film and theater are incompatible with Christianity, or are they just another medium for humanity to tell stories about themselves? At the end of his post he points out something that I really had never thought about. We tend to demonize movies, but he talks about other professions outside of the movie industry, such as law, where lawyers encounter some pretty horrible things too.
THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS
For years I’ve said that too many Christians want a cafeteria-style Christianity. If you want to know what that means, do read Jen’s wonderful post at her blog, Jen’s Thoughts on Nothing In Particular. But instead of calling it cafeteria, she calls it Jen's Thoughts on Buffet-Style Religion Hey! I like the “buffet” word too.
*Many bloggers, including myself, keep hitting on the theme of a too easy Christianity and the need to preach the real gospel. Stephen at ChristWeb presents a teen survey recently taken and poses the question, "How do you market true Christianity to teens?" To find out, do read his post, Teen Religion Survey.
*"Neither God nor salvation is a controlled lab experiment." I love that quote from Tim’s post, There's Growth, and Then There's Growth at his blog, Church Voices
Tim discusses another hot topic of the church world today, church growth. At the end of his post he gives the answer to church growth. And just wait until you read his answer. I loved it!
I just had to put this post under this category since in all soap operas, everyone is habitually suffering.
*At Dappled Things, Father Jim, a generation X Catholic priest, presents a very thorough Scriptural theology of suffering in his post, Suffering in Christ. He writes that his post presents a Scriptural synthesis of the Catholic theology of participating in the Passion of Christ.
And that's it folks. Happy blog reading.