Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Tuesday, October 19, 2021
String Quartet in D Minor, Op. 76 No. 2, Hob. III:76 "Quintenquartett": I. Allegro (Festetics Quartet)
I know that bonus episode dropped recently but I haven't gotten around to it. I'd rather end the day of blogging on a more somber but paradoxically festive note, a performance of one of Haydn's string quartets on period instruments where all the repeats in the score are actually observed in performance.
It's kind of a shame that a box set of Haydn recordings has to SAY that all the repeats are observed but that might be a springboard for discussing how in the 19th century structural repeats written into scores started getting omitted in performances.
Anyway, here's a performance of the "Fifths" string quartet, first movement. Had I not had a chance to hear how Haydn's works sounded with all the repeats performed as scored I might have taken longer to think through how I wanted to translate the time-space issues of corresponding and contrasting structural repeats in ragtime pieces but I digress. If you dig Haydn you will "probably" enjoy this and if not, I will be revisiting Coltrane since I'm looking forward to hearing the live in Seattle recording that comes out soon.
Monday, October 18, 2021
Mark Driscoll's Christian Theology vs Critical Theory could probably use at least one footnote giving credit to Stephen Eric Bronner's primer on critical theory
King Jesus who began His public ministry in Luke 4:18-21 reading from
and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those
September 30, 2020 ·
Side study this week to prep for Romans 2
Critical Theory: A Very Short Introduction
Copyright © 2011 by Stephen Eric Bronner
Published by Oxford University Press, Inc.
ISBN: 978-0-19-973007-0 (paperback)
Like many deaths, the final demise of Christendom occurred after a long, painful struggle that started in the 1960s and 1970s as I described in my book A Call to Resurgence. Christendom took a serious beating during those years from the fatal five: gender confusion, sex, abortions, drugs, and Spiritless spirituality. Strength and vigor waned as Christendom grew old and tired in the 1980s and 1990s; by the turn of the millennium, it could no longer fight back. Finally, after more than a decade of labored breathing and a weakening heart, Christendom has gone the way of all flesh.
But before we move forward into a future without Christendom, it’s important to look back to see where we’ve come from. What exactly is Christendom, how is it different from Christianity itself, and how does it relate to the church today?
Christendom began about the time of the Reformation and lasted roughly 500 years. The United States was among the most adventurous experiments of Christendom. …
Due to the ongoing existence of American civil religion, many evangelicals are oblivious to the fact that Christendom is dead and real Christianity is in serious decline. Those in the United States may have a general sense that Christianity is struggling in Europe, but many remain fairly optimistic about our “one nation under God.” As long as we see Christmas trees on government property, the 10 Commandments posted on public buildings, and hear public figures talk about “faith,” many believers naively assume that real Christianity is alive and well and respected by the majority of our people.
Brace yourself. It’s an illusion.
With the death of Christendom, however, the cultural advantages of Christianity have diminished, and many people have decided to drop the charade altogether. This shouldn’t come as a surprise; without inward conversion there’s no reason to expect outward devotion. Younger generations increasingly feel less obligated even to profess Christianity, and society increasingly provides less incentive to do so. The advent of mass media, digital communication, and global travel have made competing religions, spiritualities, and philosophies (including agnosticism and atheism) more acceptable and fashionable. In contrast, Christendom is the old way, led by old people for old people. It’s no wonder young people stop attending church, stop giving to the church, and stop practicing faith through Bible reading, a lifestyle of repentance, and passion for Jesus Christ.
From page 3 of Christian Theology vs Critical Theory:
Everything God creates, Satan counterfeits. The counterfeit of Christian Theology is Critical Theory. As a spiritual virus that spreads much more quickly than a physical virus, it has already infected and affected academia, government, and social media platforms, as well as many pulpits and pastors. In Romans 1, Paul speaks of Critical Theory as part of the “lie” that is against the “truth” and he says that the demonic powers at work in the world “suppress the truth” to silence dissent with things like social media throttling, banning from platforms, and cancel culture. This is not solely a political issue. This is primarily a spiritual and a theological issue that has already taken deep-seated root in many mainline, apostate, liberal Christian denominations that fly the rainbow flag and join in parades for things they should be having funerals for. It has now infected many evangelicals as well.
Christians should think in terms of black and white (binary thinking). Non-Christians think in terms of shades of gray. Biblical thinking is binary thinking.
there was, it turned out, a brief comment from Driscoll alluding to the suicide of Darrin Patrick before it was ruled a suicide (a belated update)
Episodes 9 and 10 of the CT series have dropped but no comments about them beyond a few brief remarks for the time being
Friday, October 15, 2021
Len Oakes on the role of charismatic rituals initiated by self-designated prophets to form social cohesion
Prophetic Charisma: The Psychology of Revolutionary Religious PersonalitiesLen OakesISBN 9780815603986 paperbackISBN 9780815627005 hardcoverISBN 9780815603993 ebookFrom Chapter 8: The Charismatic Momentpage 145 (or 146)Charismatic rituals are the prophet's main creative achievement. At one and the same time the ritual satisfies the leader's narcissistic needs and transforms the followers; the former, by re-creating a world within which the leader is omnipotent, and the latter, by emotionally revitalizing all who participate in it. The rituals lay an emotional and spiritual base for the community. hence an important task, perhaps the most important task, for the prophet during this time is the construction of charismatic rituals. They are his or her framework for the exploration of love and truth. Each is a set of guidelines that allows people to come together and celebrate the mystery that lies between them.
Monday, October 11, 2021
Sunday, October 10, 2021
on the Christianity Today podcast mini-episode questioning the origin myths of Mars Hill, a long-form review of Mark Driscoll's stories of conversion and calling from 1992-2019, the most significant revisions have been post-MHC accounts
Friday, October 08, 2021
Tuesday, October 05, 2021
a postscript to earlier thoughts on "Dark Was the Night", if we consult the tunes associated with the text at hymnary.org ... the hymn tunes associated with the hymn texts have absolutely nothing to do with Johnson's performance
Monday, October 04, 2021
Mark Driscoll has a message for "Woke Joke Folk" that he's got a new ebook out on Christian Theology vs. Critical Theory, too bad he couldn't be bothered to list primary or secondary sources in his bibliographic notes
Haven’t gotten in trouble for a while. It was time. Download the book, “Christian Theology VS Critical Theory,” at the link in my bio.
Saturday, October 02, 2021
Ethan Hein discusses the Kronos Quartet playing Jimi Hendrix and ... Blind Willie Johnson (for which I can never forgive them!)--update: I've found exactly ONE academic monograph on the lining hymn traditions so far, included at the end of the post
thoughts on The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill by episode 9: it isn't really a history and responses to it have often fit what Samuel D James has described and exemplified in his responses as "the take trap"
an article at Vice on Doug Wilson's church gets a response from Wilson who regards it as a work full of lies but a great microphone handed to him to promote the 2nd edition of A Justice Primer
Thursday, September 30, 2021
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
Dream Divination in the Ministry of Mark Driscoll: Driscoll on the rarity of his interpreting other dreams as an implicit baseline against which to appreciate his reliance on dream divination in his own ministry
I have already broached the topic of dream divination in Mark Driscoll’s ministry by way of his accounts of his reliance on what he’s called prophetic dreams in his own ministry.
Following up on an old thread taken up by Warren Throckmorton, however, it’s worth revisiting that Driscoll claimed he rarely interpreted anyone else’s dreams. That Driscoll said it was rare for him to interpret the dreams of others suggests that the base line against which he made this comparison was a history of interpreting his own dreams.
And there’s only been a few occasions where I’ve ever interpreted anybody else’s dream. And I’ll say this. Not all dreams are from God. Some of them are from chili or Taco Bell or, you know. You say, “I had pepperoni pizza, and I saw Jesus.” No, no, you had gas. You just had gas and you were hallucinating. You know, you’ll be fine. Not all dreams are from God, okay. But when you do get a dream from God, it needs to be interpreted so you know what it means unless God would give you the interpretation himself.
I had one occasion where I actually did interpret a guy’s dream. It was the strangest dream. It was at the old building. We had six services, and I was between services. And this guy drove – he came into the church. And he was an Asian guy from Canada. He had his wife and a few kids. They all looked very, very tired. He came up to me. He said, “I really need to meet with you right now.” I said, “Man, I just preached three. I gotta get a bite to eat. I gotta preach three more. I really can’t leave right now.” He said, “No, we just drove all the way from northern Canada. We haven’t slept all night.” Apparently God’s not in Canada. God has to come down.
So, I tell this guy. I’m like, “All right, cool. We’ll do that. Now tell me your story.” So, he tells me his dream. And his wife’s literally falling asleep. His kids are exhausted. They’ve been up all night driving. It was the weirdest thing cause I don’t know how or why. I just told him. “Well, here’s what it means, and here’s what God’s gonna do. And you need to quit working at this church. God’s gonna have you hired at this church. And these people are hard hearted. And God doesn’t want you to serve them anymore because he’s gonna judge them, but he wants to take care of you and your family. So he wants to move you on before he judges.”
And I just talked for about 10, 15 minutes. And he’s like, “How do you know that?” I was like, “I have no idea.” I never met this guy. I don’t know this guy. I don’t know anything about him. And he says, “Well, then that’s the interpretation.” His wife gave me a big hug. She’s crying. She says, “You know, that’s what we needed to hear.” They get in the car and leave. They go back to Canada. I never heard from them again.
And it’s weird because some of you, there’s time when God speaks through you, or reveals something to you, or you interpret a dream. You go, “I don’t know. I don’t understand. But apparently God loves you, and he wanted to say something to you. And apparently he used me in that moment to talk to you.” That’s what Joseph is doing. Joseph says, “You’ve had a dream. It’s from God. You don’t know God, but I do. So, why don’t you tell me the dream? I’ll ask God. He’ll tell me the meaning, and I’ll serve as sort of a mediator and a go between between you and God here. You tell me the dream. I’ll ask him. I’ll tell you the meaning cause only God knows the meaning cause God’s the one who gave the dream.”
Now, I’m hesitant to tell you that I’ve got this gift because most people who say that are total wingnuts, which maybe I am, which would explain a ton. And when I say that, I know I have the prophetic teaching, preaching proclamation aspect, but there are times in my ministry where I’ve had this future revelation knowledge thing going on – where I know the future and proclaim it to a group of people. I’ll tell you one. It was the weirdest day. It was years ago. I was at a young pastors’ conference and they bring out the speakers and bring you out on the stage and everybody gets a chance to teach and there’s like, I don’t know, maybe a thousand young pastors. This big organization, led by this prominent young teacher, preacher guy, and I was supposed to speak at lunch, which is not the best slot. Everybody’s eating. This is not, you know, you’re the third opening band before the headliner, that kinda gig and so I’m like, “Oh great. I get to teach the Bible while everyone is eating. I’m sure this will be, just be life-changing for everyone over dessert.” And so I got up and I was planning on teaching the book of Ephesians on the reconciling power of the Gospel to bring diverse people groups together in Jesus Christ, and I went to do my teaching up front. I thought, “Well, I better open in prayer,” so I start praying, “Dear Jesus,” next thing I know, I start prophesying. Unexpectedly, over lunch, at a pastor’s conference and God told me that some of the key leaders in this conference that was hosting me and paid for my hotel and flight and honorarium had ongoing, unrepentant sexual sin. That the other leaders in the ministry knew of it and wouldn’t do anything about it and that God was frustrated because there was a disqualified leader leading the thing and he wanted me to publicly declare it and repent for him in public on the stage, during lunch, in my prayer time, at a pastor’s conference with the guys who write the check.
So, I start praying and I’m like, “God and I’m sorry that, you know, I’m sorry that there’s sexual sin and perversion and disqualification – that the leaders will not address this issue and I know judgment is against the organization and I know you will expose the evildo-” I go off. I kept my eyes closed, because I’m thinking, “If they chuck stuff, I don’t even wanna see it coming,” you know? I’m like, “Oh, man! Where is this coming from?” and I’m flowing and going and I’m like, “Oh, man. I hope this is the Ghost. I hope this is real.” So I’m going with this. I go for about 15, 20 minutes in a prayer, right? And I finally open my eyes, “Amen,” everybody’s still got their food on their fork, like – at first they’re like, “This is a weird skit,” and then they’re like, “This is really weird,” you know? And a pastor’s magazine wrote it up as a prophetic moment. I said, “Amen,” and I just didn’t know what to do, so I just walked away. I just left. Yeah. See you later. So I just leave. I walk off the stage and the guy who’s on the stage side, who runs the ministry – he’s the headliner, he’s the emcee, this is his organization. I just was like, “I’m sorry, dude. You know, I didn’t,” – and he gets the mic and he comes out and he’s trying to pick up the mess, because they got, like a half-hour left on the schedule they gotta fill. So he’s like, “Blah, blah, blah.” He sounds like the teacher from Peanuts. He’s not saying anything. He doesn’t know what to say. Less than a year later, it gets exposed that he was the guy who was an absolute sex addict, out of control, disqualified from ministry. People knew and weren’t doing anything about it. I prophesied against that guy and then he got fired and he got exposed and I haven’t gotten any invitations back, but I felt like that was a prophetic moment, that I wasn’t looking for. I wasn’t trying to – I was just gonna, “Hey, let’s go to Ephesians and talk about nice Jesus.” Next thing I know, I’m running for the airport, you know? And sometimes, that’s the way the prophetic word works. You don’t walk in, “Hi, I’m a prophet.” No. You don’t elect yourself to be a prophet. If you read the Old Testament, the prophets end up getting killed and they cry a lot, so this isn’t what you, you know coach your kids to grow up and be, you know? “Hey, you could be a prophet.” They’re like, “I don’t wanna be that. I want the gift of helps. People like them,” you know, I mean this is – this is a weird gift. And sometimes it’s not revelation of future knowledge to a group like this. Sometimes it’s just to an individual. That’s why a lot of prophecy shouldn’t even happen in the church, it’s a personal one-on-one word, word of knowledge or wisdom or revelation – some other traditions will call it – but it’s a personal word from God through someone with a gift of prophecy to an individual.
Again, Agabus is a good illustration of this. The prophet in Acts 21:10 and 11. God gives him a word on how Paul is gonna die. So he goes to Paul and says, “Paul, I know how you’re gonna die and he tells him, here’s how you’re gonna die.” That’s a personal word from God through the prophet Agabus to Paul. And again, I’ve had this. The first time I did it, it freaked me out. I was on a national radio show taking calls from all around the country for three hours on Saturday night. I was hosting the show because the usual host was on vacation, so I’m taking calls, talking about Jesus, answering Bible questions, having a good time. This guy calls in. I don’t remember his name. We’ll call him Hank, because I don’t remember his name. We’ll call him Hank. Hank calls in from Ohio – I think it was Cleveland – and Hank just goes off on his church. “I hate my church. The music stinks. The pastor stinks. Everything stinks. I hate going to church. I hate being there. Pastors stink. You stink. Everything stinks.” And I just – I couldn’t believe it. I said, “Hank, here’s the problem. You don’t like going to church because you’re cheating on your wife and you’re running around being just a totally out of control sexual deviant and you’re committing adultery and when you go to church, you feel convicted. That’s why you don’t like the church. It’s a good church and the pastor loves Jesus and he’s preaching the Bible and you feel guilty when you’re there because you’re there with your wife. Don’t blame it on the church, repent of your sin, otherwise God might kill you.”
Right? And this is Hank in Ohio. And I remember looking at the mic going, “Oh, man! I never met Hank. I don’t know Hank.” These are my first words to Hank and I’m like, “That just went across the whole country right there.” I’m going, “Man, I hope that was God, not the taquito I ate for dinner, you know, that, that right there could get me in some serious trouble,” and it gets really quiet and I’m trying to figure out how to save this and then Hank goes, “How did you know I was cheating on my wife?” I said, “Dude, that’s God. You better knock it off. Better knock it off.” You know? But you don’t – I – you don’t look for this stuff. Sometimes God just gives you something and you roll with it.
I had another one, when we were over at the old building. The church was just starting to grow. We had a couple services and I remember I did one of the morning services and I was getting ready to do the other one and this Asian family walks in and they all look exhausted and they’re all tired and the kids are kinda falling asleep on mom and she looks tired and dad’s there and he says, “I – we need to meet with you right now.” I said, “I can’t meet right now, dude. I just got done with one service. I’m doing another service. I don’t do meetings right now. I just got, like, a little bit of time between the services.” He says, “God told us to come to you. We need the word from a prophet.” I was like, “Well, if you find one, you know, tell him I said ‘Hi!’ and send him over. I got stuff I wanna ask him, too. I don’t got anything for you, man. I’m not the prophet.” He says, “No, God said you’re the prophet and you have the word for us.” I said, “Well, where are you from?” He said, “We drove all night from Canada.” Apparently there are no prophets in Canada, so they had to come down. I said, “Okay.” I said, “You drove all night?” He said, “We drove all night,” from somewhere up in central Canada. I said, “Okay, so that explains why you all look so tired. You’ve been in the car all night.” So I didn’t know anything about this guy. I said, “Well, I’ll meet with you for a few minutes, pray for you. I mean, least I could do, you drove all night with your family.
Sat them on the couch. Prayed. Looked at them. Then went off on this whole rant. I said, “Look, the church you’re in is a Godless church. They have a hard heart. Some of the leaders have hidden, unconfessed, unrepentant sin. They are just not participating with God. God needs to judge those leaders, remove them, cleanse and purify the church, then if they are repentant, he will grow it. If not, he will shut it down. You’re in the same situation as Revelation 2 and 3. You, however, keep holding on to the church, trying to salvage it and save it and make it work because you’re being proud and you think that it’s a reflection of you. It’s not a reflection of you, it’s a reflection of Jesus. You need to get out of the way. Quit your job. Jesus has another job for you at this other church. You take that job. He’ll bless you there. Get out of the way. Let him deal with this church. That’s what his word is to you. You’re a pastor, right?” I mean, I didn’t know. I gave him this whole thing and I’m like, “Are you a pastor?” He’s like, “Yeah.” I was like, “Then that’s what it is.” So – and he gives me a big hug. He says, “Okay. That’s what we’ve been wrestling with. We didn’t – I want to leave but I didn’t know if it was me or the Lord that was moving me on and I needed confirmation.” His wife’s crying. Gives me a big hug. She says, “In my heart, I knew that’s what God had for us, but I didn’t wanna tell my husband because I wanted him to hear from God. Thank you so much.” I pray for them. They go home and I see them a few years later at a conference. He said, “Everything happened just like you said. I’m at the other church. We’re happy. It’s growing. God’s blessing it. Massive sin came out in the leadership of the other church. They now are in the process of either repenting or not and the church is gonna live or die. It’s teetering on the edge, just like you said.” I’m like, “Okey dokie. Okay.” You know, I don’t understand this all the time.