by Barton Gingerich (@BJGingerich)
Welcome to Friday. I don’t know about you all, but this past week has provided an excellent selection of good writing worth a Christian’s perusal.
First, Christanity Today’s analysis of the “feel-good faith” of evangelicals. Something deep and troubling now afflicts the church that revivalism made. As a researcher in the report points out, “People just did not worry about heresy. They worried about making God come alive for them.” How long can you endure without a devotion to truth? What fruits will you produce?
Second, Anthony Esolen’s scathing editorial in Crisis about the insanity of our contemporary era. Not only are so many social leaders and average Americans in grave error, but they are also in terribly frustrating inconsistent error. A sample to whet the appetite (or get you mad): “On the next Monday—for the lunacy outlasts the phases of the moon—we are told that a pregnant woman is, emotionally, a tender flower, who must be protected against people praying for her and her child as she enters the abortuary. On Tuesday, we are derided for being impossibly old-fashioned if we suggest that it might not be a good thing for women who are possibly pregnant to be crawling on their bellies on a battlefield, where men will be shouting things much more terrifying than the Hail Mary.”
Next, an article from Ethika Politica I found belatedly in my internet to’s-and-fro’s. This essay is a punch to the gut; it outlines why young people raised in the Christian subculture leave the Church. Basically, ministry to youth AND adults is juvenile. What does the American Church expect of her members? To have fun, acquire therapy, and enjoy human fellowship. Are we that surprised that people leave, especially when they found better avenues to acquire these goods? All in all, this is a much-needed strike at the Cheezus culture that we have constructed. Pastors, parents, and anyone else worried about the “rise of the nones,” please take note. To evangelicals: brace yourselves–the author sees this as an issue that pivots on sacraments and liturgy, since these are things the Church actually has a monopoly on.
Finally, our friends over at Marriage Generation discuss how over-sexualization has effectively murdered male friendship. Phileo has been slaughtered on the altar in the worship of disordered Eros. Josh Bishop writes, “Normalizing and institutionalizing same-sex eros booby-traps a boy’s path to manhood by subtly undermining those essential, formative male relationships: the hunting buddy, the card club, the platoon, the ball team, the scout troop. And without these relationships as boys, the ability to develop the same type of relationships as men, with other men, will be grossly impaired.”