I had the pleasure of briefly chatting with George Penk on the show “The Forum” on Life FM tonight. The topic was the recent and pubic fall from grace of Tim Lambesis, vocalist of heavy metal band “As I Lay Dying.”
As readers may know, As I Lay Dying is a band that has been around for some time, with their debut album Beneath the Encasing of Ashes coming out back in 2001. I discovered the band in roughly 2004, shortly after the release of their second album Frail Words Collapse, which came out in 2003. The band was openly Christian and was highly regarded within the “Christian Metal community.” That’s not a term I came up with, but one that is used a lot. Each new album released saw them rise higher, until they had attained dizzying heights of success. Their 2012 release “Awakened” was sublime. But things were not well for frontman Tim Lambesis. His marriage had fallen apart, he had disclosed to a number of people that he had lost his faith, and in February 2014 he pleaded guilty to attempting to hire a hit man to murder his estranged wife. He has since been sentenced and jailed. Continue reading “On Metal and Mercenaries: The case of Tim Lambesis”→
Dear Charlie Hughes, the (former?) vicar of St Michael’s Anglican in Henderson…
You don’t know me, but I saw your story in the newspaper. You’re disappointed by the direction the Anglican Church has taken in announcing that it will establish a process by which those ministers who wish to do so may bless same-sex unions, without actually performing same-sex weddings. I’m disappointed by this development as well. You’re so disappointed that you’re leaving the Anglican Church, and pursuing ministry elsewhere.
Charlie, I really appreciate the difficult spot you were put in, and I totally understand your call to move on. You’re right, the Synod got this wrong (Anglicans are allowed to say that, and very often do) and is catering to a vocal minority, setting aside what is, let’s face it, pretty clear biblical teaching. In case there is any possibility that I might give you some pause (if it isn’t too late already), I’d like to make my pitch. Continue reading “Should Evangelical Ministers Respond with Fight or Flight?”→
I’ve gotten tired of apologetics efforts against Protestants that offer “A million bazillion scattered quotes from the Church Fathers that clearly, obviously prove that they thought X.” Proof-text warfare is easy, but generally worthless, and the straw that broke the camel’s back for me was the issue of what the Fathers believed about the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. No more, please. That is not a respectful way to treat the Fathers on this or any subject. Continue reading “This Is My Body: Using discernment when reading the Church Fathers on the Lord’s Supper”→
I’m coming out. Yes, I’m going Anglican, no, I haven’t lost my mind, and here’s roughly how and why it happened (and is still happening).
As I indicated in my last blog post (on entering the Anglican fray on marriage), my family and I have begun to attend the Anglican Church. I say “attend” because nothing has been signed in blood and no dark ceremonies have been performed to make anything official, but I’m sure that will happen in due course. I’ve even redecorated the blog in honour of this move.
Reformers may, in addition to being reformers, also be innovators. However, the essence of Reform is not innovation.
I say this thinking especially of the 14th-16th century movements in European Christianity (which were the fruit of centuries of momentum building within the Church). Reform is a call to put things right, not to start something new. There have been many reformers whose call to reform was accepted by the Catholic Church, and there have been reformers whose call to reform was not accepted. But Christian reformers, those who are now called The Reformers, were thoroughly conscious of their actions as part of an organic unity with the church catholic, and a desire to reform it.
Those Christian movements that have arisen professedly wanting to do a new thing, whatever their virtues may be, cannot be considered heirs of the Reformation. It was precisely because of the concern that the Church was doing far too many new things that Reform was called for.
Throughout the life of this blog and podcast I have offered a Christian perspective on the subjects that I cover, even having the audacity to commend a Christian outlook as sensible, defensible and (gasp) true! But why bother doing that? What’s it all about – what difference does it make whether or not Christianity is true? You’ll have to listen and find out!
Minimalist Christianity is not only tactically and pastorally wise as well as charitable, but it’s also biblical.
Now for me to sell this claim, which may take a bit more work! I’m not sure how to categorise what follows. It’s not (really) theology. It’s not philosophy either. Maybe it’s somewhat “pastoral” in nature (but I’m no pastor). Take it as advice (and as advice that happens to be true, I might add). Continue reading “Minimalist Christianity”→
I started the “Nuts and Bolts” series as a way of explaining some of the basic / common concepts in philosophy as well as theology at a fairly introductory level. Sometimes this is prompted by the realisation that online, often people refer to those concepts – even criticising or commending them – without actually having a firm grasp on them. It was an example like this that prompted me to start the series.