Weekly Random Links

random cubes thumb

Its been awhile since my last random. Been short of time recently with my newborn son Caleb, bible in a year blog posts and study. None the less here we go, I found these interesting.

  • “Desperately Seeking God” And Other Cries For Help From The Evangelical Dark Side
  • A Return to an Oldie but Goodie: The NeoReformed
  • Marriage Shouldn’t Be ‘Fair’
  • Adult Virgins Say They Don’t Want to Date Other Adult Virgins
  • Questions about Bible Reading

“Desperately Seeking God” And Other Cries For Help From The Evangelical Dark Side

After being active and very strong in my evangelical faith for most of my 60 years of life, about three years ago my husband and I stopped attending church. We had grown incredibly weary and exhausted with the apologetic acrobatics necessary to reconcile the truths of God and Jesus of the Bible with the what we were hearing and seeing all around us in a 21st century world and church.

Some would say we lost our faith, but the reality is we still desperately seek God and long for the ability to believe in his existence without having to bury our heads in the sand. God seems largely absent, indifferent, or simply on vacation to us anymore. I am currently reading Inspiration and Incarnation, but I’m wondering if you have written anything specifically on prayer and why most of the time it seems a fruitless exercise?

A Return to an Oldie but Goodie: The NeoReformed

The NeoReformed, for a variety of reasons, some of them good, don’t recognize that evangelicalism is a village green. Perhaps they do reluctantly, but they look down their noses at the non-Reformed. A sense of being the most faithful is core to the NeoReformed. (Agree?) Instead of wanting a village green of diversity they want to build a gate at the gate-less village green and require (Neo or not) Reformed confessions and credentials to enter onto the village green. Put differently, they think the only truly faithful evangelicals are Reformed. Really Reformed. In other words, they are “confessing” evangelicals. They are more than happy to call into question the legitimacy and fidelity of any evangelical who doesn’t believe in classic Reformed doctrines. The palpable observation here is that many of us think the NeoReformed are as attached to Tradition (read Westminster etc) as they are to sola scriptura.

Marriage Shouldn’t Be ‘Fair’

I recently saw something on TV that made my jaw drop. It was a blonde, fresh-faced young woman boldly sharing on a talk show that she served her husband in every way, every day.
“When he gets home from work, I have a hot meal waiting for him. I don’t expect him to do any housework at all. It’s my job to care for him and I love it,” she said. From the look on her face, you knew she meant what she was saying. The faces of the women in the audience were harder to read. There was a mixture of surprise, pity, respect and definitely confusion.
I decided to ask a few women what they thought. At a Bible study, I asked six different Christian women and the response was the same: “Sure, I’ll serve my husband that way as long as he holds up his end of the deal. It’s unreasonable to not expect your husband to help. I pull my weight, he pulls his.”
That makes sense, but the response raises an unnerving question that never seems to get addressed: What if he doesn’t pull his weight? What if you have a hard day and you’re not pulling your weight? Is it OK for spouses to hold their service hostage until certain terms are met? This type of arrangement seems contingent on a lot of “If’s.” If he pulls his weight … If she serves me … If he works as hard as I do. What we’re essentially talking about is the 50/50 marriage.

Adult Virgins Say They Don’t Want to Date Other Adult Virgins

In 2014, Alexa Tsoulis-Reay interviewed a man from Paradise, California, who was at the time 58 years old, and still a virgin. The quote that ends the Q&A is heartbreaking: Asked what the hardest part of being a nearly-60-year-old virgin, the man responded, “Laying alone at night, falling asleep, and then getting up in the morning and remembering you’re alone.”
Typically, Americans lose their virginity around age 17, according to the most recent statistics. But what if it doesn’t happen then? What is dating like for the sexually inexperienced? New Kinsey Institute-led research in The Journal of Sex Research attempts to answer that, showing the awkward, bumbling 40-Year-Old Virgin trope is in reality a far more complicated existence.

Questions about Bible Reading

One of the more unsaid but commonly felt problems with Bible reading today is the incredible expertise of some in knowing the Bible, in knowing about the Bible, and in know the historical and social contexts of the Bible. Leading many to think they can’t read the Bible with understanding because they are so overwhelmed — and they enjoy it — when they hear experts interpret the Bible.
Question: Do Bible experts unintentionally take the Bible out of the hands of the lay person?
One more question that comes from this consideration: I find an increasing lack of need of the Bible for many to articulate their Christian beliefs. Karl Barth or John Calvin, NT Wright or Douglas Campbell, Augustine or Aquinas… they are all part of the mix and, in fact, are the organizing center for ideas rather than the Bible.
Are you seeing a diminishing of the importance of the Bible for the formation of what Christians believe?