Saturday, March 11, 2006

Mega Church Networked Special Edition

The internet is the source of entertaining parody. This "videogame" has been making the rounds, and I post it here especially for the benefit of some fellow seminarian readers. Please don't violate any bandwidth restrictions while playing this network version of the game.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Soul for Sale

This facinating story appeared on page one of yesterday's Wall Street Journal (subscription required). An excerpt:

A few weeks ago, Hemant Mehta posted an unusual item for sale on eBay: a chance to save his soul.

The DePaul University graduate student promised the winner that for each $10 of the final bid, he would attend an hour of church services. The 23-year-old Mr. Mehta is an atheist, but he says he suspected he had been missing out on something.

"Perhaps being around a group of people who will show me 'the way' could do what no one else has done before," Mr. Mehta wrote in his eBay sales pitch. "This is possibly the best chance anyone has of changing me."

Evangelists bid, eager to save a sinner. Atheists bid, hoping to keep Mr. Mehta in their fold. When the auction stopped on Feb. 3 after 41 bids, the buyer was Jim Henderson, a former evangelical minister from Seattle, whose $504 bid prevailed.

Mr. Henderson wasn't looking for a convert. He wanted Mr. Mehta to embark with him on an eccentric experiment in spiritual bridge-building.

Sermon fodder, perhaps? I think so.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Nature and Purpose

Originally uploaded by antimethod
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
and do not return there until they have watered the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

For you shall go out in joy,
and be led back in peace;
the mountains and the hills before you
shall burst into song,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
(Is 55:10-12 NRSV)

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

New Bloggy Goodness on Cultural Subjugation

Delicious thoughts are now available at a new blog entitled "Always Reformed; Always Reforming." The author goes by the moniker "Virtual Circuit Rider."

An excerpt:
In this culture the gospel is subjugated, dominated, and expunged of every element that offends. In the end, to be Christian in the United States carries no risk and ultimately no meaning. It certainly isn't transformative. Why allow anything to change me?

We could learn a great deal I suspect from those orthodox Jews still stubbornly binding the word on their foreheads and from those Muslims so devoted to their prophet that they are willing to risk their lives declaring anathema the smug condescension of secular Europe. For what are Americans willing to die? For what are Christians willing to risk their lives? Nothing.

"A young lady said 'there is nothing worth dying for'... which means of course that one day she shall have the unpleasant task of dying for nothing." William H. Willimon
Well said. A belated welcome to the blogosphere, VCR!

Monday, March 06, 2006

The New Lepers

As the smoker has become a pariah, sufferers from lung cancer have become the lepers of the twenty-first century.
More here.