Sunday, October 23, 2011

HT to Brian Auten over at BHT: The Rawest Nerve

http://boarsheadtavern.com/2011/10/23/brandingcelebrity-the-raw-nerve-of-conservative-evangelicalism/

When you bring up the issues of branding (a la Mars Hill) and celebrity in the context of young, restless, Reformed evangelicalism, I’d argue that you are hitting not just a “raw nerve,” but the “rawest nerve.” Yesterday, I organized my notes and links on the “state of the blog conversation” between 2007-2011 re: conservative evangelical celebrity. For those who might be interested, or might find them helpful for your own research, you can find the notes here.
[Addendum -- Thanks to Matthew Johnson for explaining the whole Dropbox thing to me; I'm a technological neanderthal.]

Yep, seens like branding and celebrity is the rawest nerve in the context of young, restless Reformed evangelicalism.  In a different sort of way the pitfalls of branding and celebrity were rampant in American Pentecostalism in the 1980s and 1990s.  Bakker, Swaggart, and others.  We could swap out terms like "annointed", "fresh fire", and "move of God" and replace them with "missional", "community" and "contextualization".  Of course the scandals that have erupted in connection to Pentecostals have tended to be about sex and money.  The scandals that have erupted in the young, restless Reformed orbit have been about about pride and power. 

It is usually said that those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it.  Well, maybe the trouble is that those who do know history (or think they do) are doomed to think they will transcend it.  A friend of mine was telling me that the bit with the latest X-Men titles (not that, honestly, I have ever cared about X-men despite being a comics fan) is that "history doesn't repeat itself, it rhymes."

Slant rhyme is still rhyming.  We'll just have to wait and see how the next few couplets play out in the poem.

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