Even the title of the story reveals that the New York Times is on the war-path against intelligent design: â€œPoliticized Scholars Put Evolution on the Defensiveâ€. This article reads like an opinion piece, but itâ€™s not. Itâ€™s reported as straight news. There is no serious engagement of arguments in this article, just the usual ad-hominem accusation that Intelligent Design scientists are politically motivated culture warriors.
Author Archive | Denny Burk
After two critical posts, itâ€™s time to say something constructive. Even if I canâ€™t agree with the methods of the XXXChurch, I do want to affirm their desire to take the Gospel to every sinner. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is just as much for porn stars and porn addicts as it is for any other sinner on planet earth. Continue Reading →
I have had more than one person object to my last post with something like the following: â€œYou cannot come down on these guys for going to the porn convention because they may not have a struggle with lust like most other men do. Besides, we have to take the Gospel to sinners, and sometimes that may mean going to porn conventions.â€
I want to respond to those objections with a few thoughts. Continue Reading →
R. Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has posted the second of two articles on married couples who refuse to have children. You ought to take a look at both of them.
This most recent article is titled â€œDeliberate Childlessness Revisited,â€ and the first is titled â€œDeliberate Childlessness: Moral Rebellion With a New Face.â€
Mohler admits that he touched a nerve with the first articleâ€”which is no surprise given that he maintains that â€œdeliberate childlessnessâ€ is a â€œmoral rebellionâ€ against God.
This bodes ill for NARAL Pro-Choice America and leaves them looking more and more like a fringe group. No doubt this is why their communications director, David Seldin, has resigned.
The Times editorial ends with the following paragraph:
â€œIn withdrawing the ad, Naral’s president, Nancy Keenan, said that the controversy sparked by the ad had â€˜become a distractionâ€™ from the group’s effort to educate the public. Lamentably, her statement stopped short of apologizing to Judge Roberts, and to Americans of all ideological stripes who are hoping for a confirmation process at once vigorous and informed. If Naral wants to regain credibility, it should start there.â€
You have probably heard about the ad that NARAL ran on TV smearing Judge John Roberts. The ad alleged that Judge Roberts supports violence against abortion providers. The ad was manifestly scurrilous, and thankfully, has been called out as such by an editorial in todayâ€™s Washington Post. You can read it here. NARAL has now withdrawn the ad.(HT: Justin Taylor)
For you rabid U2 fans, I thought you might be interested in an interview with Bono appearing on the Christianity Today website. The interview appears under the title â€œBono: Grace over Karma.â€ Among other things, Bono is able to articulate a fairly clear profession of faith in Christ.
â€œI’m holding out that Jesus took my sins onto the Cross, because I know who I am, and I hope I don’t have to depend on my own religiosity . . . I love the idea of the Sacrificial Lamb. I love the idea that God says: Look, you cretins, there are certain results to the way we are, to selfishness, and there’s a mortality as part of your very sinful nature, and, let’s face it, you’re not living a very good life, are you? There are consequences to actions. The point of the death of Christ is that Christ took on the sins of the world, so that what we put out did not come back to us, and that our sinful nature does not reap the obvious death. That’s the point. It should keep us humbledâ€¦ . It’s not our own good works that get us through the gates of heaven.â€
I donâ€™t know much about Bonoâ€™s religious commitments or how his definition of terms may vary from that of the typical North American Evangelical. But at first blush, this isnâ€™t too shabby.
The interviewer (who is a skeptic, to say the least) goes on to ask: â€œChrist has his rank among the world’s great thinkers. But Son of God, isn’t that farfetched?â€ Bono responds:
â€œNo, it’s not farfetched to me. Look, the secular response to the Christ story always goes like this: he was a great prophet, obviously a very interesting guy, had a lot to say along the lines of other great prophets, be they Elijah, Muhammad, Buddha, or Confucius. But actually Christ doesn’t allow you that. He doesn’t let you off that hook. Christ says: No. I’m not saying I’m a teacher, don’t call me teacher. I’m not saying I’m a prophet. I’m saying: â€˜I’m the Messiah.â€™ I’m saying: â€˜I am God incarnate.â€™ . . . So what you’re left with is: either Christ was who He said He wasâ€”the Messiahâ€”or a complete nutcase . . . The idea that the entire course of civilization for over half of the globe could have its fate changed and turned upside-down by a nutcase, for me, that’s farfetched . . .â€
Here, Bono sounds as if heâ€™s been reading C. S. Lewisâ€™ â€œLord, Liar, or Lunaticâ€ trilemma. Whatever the case, I have to give Bono credit for giving such a thoughtful answer.
Notwithstanding his apparent misunderstanding of the relationship of the Old Testament to the New, the entire interview was a pleasant surprise.
â€œ[The study found that] â€˜doctrinal evangelicalsâ€™ are â€˜less educated, poorer, more influential among housewives, more often residents of the South, significantly more religious, and 100 percent of them consider the Bible to be inerrant.â€™ Ignore the shockingly patronizing comment about credulous housewives, and ignore the fact that, actually, we don’t know anything of the kind about the educational levels or economic status of evangelicals. That 100 percent figure is what stands out in high comic relief. I’m no sociologist, but it seems to me that if you select a group defined by their commitment to the inerrancy of Scripture, and then survey them about their commitment to the inerrancy of Scripture, you are likely (let us say, 100 percent likely) to find that a high proportion of your sample is committed to the inerrancy of Scripture.â€
TouchÃ©, Dr. Leithart!
In his daily blog on OpinionJournal.com, James Taranto brings our attention to a useful little essay by Steven Den Beste. In the essay, Den Beste says that all blogs fall into one of two basic categories. He writes:
â€œBlogs are as different as the people who write them, but you’ll find two fundamental themes, with each blog being somewhere on the axis of how much of each appears. For lack of better terms, I suppose you could refer to them as â€˜editorsâ€™ and â€˜writersâ€™.
â€œOne form of blog is the â€˜informal portalâ€™. The general idea is to find cool stuff, link to it, and perhaps add a few words describing it. The link is the point; the words are there to encapsulate and sell the link. These people are organizers, searchers, they’re the web’s editors. They become popular to the extent that their readers like their judgment.
â€œThe other theme is writing. The idea is to actually create something new and add it to the collective data stream. There may be a link involved or may not be, but it’s the writing which is the point. The subject matter may be critical or trivial; it may be driven by current events or by private experience or by the whim of the blogger. Sometimes a link is relevant; sometimes it inspires the writing. Sometimes no link is needed at allâ€ (source).
One of my favorite â€˜editorâ€™ blogs of late is Justin Taylorâ€™s Between Two Worlds. I guess I like his so much because we seem to have all the same interests: the Bible, Theology, and Politics. He is very well read, and Iâ€™m finding myself giving him hat tips more and more (I even learned the technical term â€œhat tipâ€ from him!). Other notable editors that I like include the Drudge Report (of course) and Best of the Web.
Probably my favorite â€˜writerâ€™ blogger is Russell Moore, Academic Dean of Southern Seminary. He contributes almost daily at Touchstone Magazineâ€™s â€œMere Commentsâ€ blog and at The Henry Institute website. Another writer that I enjoy is R. Albert Mohler.
We might also mention Op-Ed â€œwritersâ€ whose printed work appears on the web. My favorite is Peggy Noonan on OpinionJournal.com. A good daily round-up of online Op-Eds appears on the Real Clear Politics website.
There are two staples that I have found very helpful in my daily news reading: â€œTodayâ€™s Headlinesâ€ in the New York Times and the â€œprint editionâ€ page of the Washington Post. You can pretty well predict the top stories on the morning news programs by reading these daily editions (especially the New York Times).
Well, this is a little bit of my daily diet. I hope itâ€™s helpful to you.