1. In his short article “The Pitfalls of Indie Fame” on Grantland, Chuck Klosterman captures something we have been trying to say on here forever. Don’t be put off by all the music jargon; he is using the critical success of the tUnE-yArDs debut record as an opportunity to reflect on the cruelty of the Law. Which may be particularly pronounced in the indie world (or any rarified/snobby setting for that matter), but the phenomenon is universal. The human relationship to righteousness is a troubled one, love/hate at best, and it finds expression in every possible arena. And while non-religious…
God is all-powerful, and God desires the salvation of every person. Does God get what God wants?
This arresting sentiment from Rob Bell’s controversial Love Wins forms a basis for Bell’s implicit – albeit unstated – universalism. Of course God gets what God wants, but even Bell recognizes that God’s desires and inner motives are too complex for him to conclude that all go to heaven just from this reasoning. Which is why he turns to something more easily understood: human nature. Bell’s argument is as follows:
“There’s a better question, one we can answer, one that takes all of this speculation…
Another Week Ends: Death Row Forgiveness, Sheen on Addiction, Hemingway’s Paranoia, Risky Professions, Nick Lowe, Tami Taylor & Werner’s Where’s Waldo
1. A supremely powerful story about the forgiveness of one’s enemies over on CNN. It concerns Mark Anthony Stroman, a white supremacist on death row in Texas for a slew of hate crimes, including murder, that he committed just after 9/11. One of the men that he shot during his spree, a Muslim named Rais Bhuiyan, is publicly pleading for Stroman’s life, going so far as to travel Paris to ask the European Parliament to file a formal request that Texas commute Stroman’s sentence to life in prison, ht JD:
Bhuiyan believes that his attacker does not deserve to die…
Another Week Ends: Forsaking Simeon, The Donald, more Ayn Rand, Text Etiquette, Mel Gibson, Underage Drinking, Parenthood and Batman
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1. In the mockingcup-runneth-over department, Conference speaker Mark Galli provides a stunning Holy Week meditation in Christianity Today, “Mercifully Forsaken,” quoting among others St Paul, Martin Luther, Gerhard Forde and… our very own Simeon Zahl! Bravo:
Simeon Zahl, a scholar studying at Cambridge University, says, in a paper entitled “The Spirit and the Cross”: “One of the most reliable ways…
A major thank you to everyone who helped put on the conference in New York! We could not be happier or more grateful for how it all went. We’re offering the recordings free of charge again this year; we only ask that those who were not able to attend this year *consider* making a donation to Mockingbird to help cover the cost of the event.
Download links are followed by an in-line player for each recording. You can also download all of the recordings in a zip file.
Devotion 1: Scales Falling From the Eyes – Paul Zahl
Last year, many of us at Mockingbird discovered the writings of Mark Galli, Senior Managing Editor of Christianity Today, the flagship magazine of Evangelicalism (started in 1956 by none other than Billy Graham). Galli’s grasp of the Gospel—God’s grace in Jesus Christ to broken human beings, including Christians who can’t get it together—was as deeply refreshing as it was (almost) unique in the wider world of Evangelical Christianity. We were so intrigued that we sought him out for an interview. Needless to say, it turned out to be a fascinating conversation, looking at the current landscape of Evangelicalism, the radical…
Some details subject to change (slightly). To pre-register go here.
P.S. We’ve heard that people are getting great deals on hotel rooms in the vicinity via booking.com. Also, word has it that AirTran is having particularly good sale this week, and Delta is matching the price points. Just sayin.
P.P.S. For a great and provocative discussion of keynote speaker Mark Galli’s recent work, check out InternetMonk!
A new article from Christianity Today‘s Mark Galli, keynote speaker at the upcoming 2011 Mockingbird Conference, has this typically scorching humdinger on the annunciation and what it says about God’s grace to us:
“This announcement to Mary comes completely out of the blue, as if it were an act of sheer grace. Indeed, an act of grace to Mary and to us. Before we could decide for or against God, before we could show him how religious we are, before we could ask forgiveness for our first sin, before we were the apple of our parents’ eyes, before the foundation of…
Another Week Ends: Procrastination, Galli on Miners & Prayer, Wes Anderson, JK Rowling & goodnewsforpeoplewithbigproblems
1. A wonderful and highly relevant article in this week’s New Yorker by James Surowiecki reviewing a new book on procrastination, The Thief of Time. A perfect storm of Law-related paralysis (also known as “perfectionism” – think Chinese Democracy), Romans 7-style inner divisions and general human silliness:
Philosophers are interested in procrastination for another reason. It’s a powerful example of what the Greeks called akrasia—doing something against one’s own better judgment. Piers Steel defines procrastination as willingly deferring something even though you expect the delay to make you worse off. In other words, if you’re simply saying “Eat, drink, and be…
“The most interesting conversation was with a Hungarian evangelist to Gypsies. He described Hungary as post-modern, post-Christian, post-reading (they don’t like it, apparently), and post-listening (they heard so much propaganda from the communists that they have a hard time listening long to anyone’s claims). All in all, it struck me that Americans may not be that much different from Gypsies.” . . .
Mark Galli from: A Little Raising of Hands: