"Where's the kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering kaboom?" –Marvin Martian

New BHT Post by Fearsome Pirate http://t.co/uc2jms…

New BHT Post by Fearsome Pirate http://t.co/uc2jmsWM

Pirate Bait (sw)

This morning’s sermon was very good. Take the lowest seat at the table. Humble yourself. Don’t let the world’s systems of evaluating your status define you. And then he preached the gospel. Your righteousness and achievements don’t establish your relationship with God. Instead…

Here I would have started talking about justification by faith alone. But he started talking about baptism. God initiates our relationship with him in baptism. Now we live “the baptized life”. It’s like he’s great on grace, but doesn’t talk much about faith. I’m beginning to understand why. If we always insist upon the necessity of personal faith, people start thinking, “Am I believing right now? Am I believing hard enough?” But if we talk about grace, then people (so the theory goes) start unself-consciously trusting in that grace.

Still, this is hard for my low church evangelical children. So at lunch around the kitchen table I led them in a chant modeled after the practice of our African American brothers.

When I say baptism you say faith!
Baptism! Faith!
Baptism! Faith!

When I say baptism you say faith!
Baptism! Faith!
Baptism! Faith!

Now I think they are equipped to translate any Lutheran sermon back into their mother tongue.

Since We Were Speaking of Pirates


Arrg – pirates

I’m waiting for and anticipating the article that starts to draw parallels with our first real war…started by Thomas Jefferson no less.

Obama is in the White House – idealogical savior of the left. Thomas Jefferson was in the White house then – ideologue of Liberty.

Pirates are pirate, whether they hail from the Barbary coast or Somalia. They need to be dealt with, and Obama has an opportunity and challenge before him. Could be interesting….

Re: Captain rescued from pirates

Not that it matters I suppose, but I’m trying to reconcile accounts of “3 pirates killed with 3 bullets” with “several minutes of gunfire”.

The pirates seem shocked and surprised that we would dare to kill to rescue our citizens. I hope it doesn’t take much more of their nonsense for the world community that has a stake in that shipping lane to obliterate them.

Happy Easter to Somali Pirates…

….from the Navy Seals. Meet my little friend.

Three of the pirates on the lifeboat with Phillips were shot and killed, the U.S. Navy said. A fourth pirate was aboard the nearby USS Bainbridge negotiating Phillips’ fate when the shootings occurred. He has since been taken into custody, officials said.

I’m sorry, but that’s just hilarious.

Speaking of Pre-mil Dispensationalism

As I recall, just about every time I’ve sat in on an NT Wright lecture/presentation, it seems he’s mentioned that the conversation about the rapture and whatnot is a very American thing that he really doesn’t hear over in England at all.

I can’t wait for the invites to go see left behind to start rolling in from the church folk. I’ll need to do some teaching on the whole rapture thing, but I imagine there will be instances where I might just have to say I can’t stand Nicholas Cage.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about change and adaptation in leadership and organizations. Anyone here familiar with adaptive leadership stuff? Any other “Starfish and the Spider” book fans? I keep wondering what the church of the future in North America will look like. It’ll need to be resilient and adaptive, but also firm on core convictions, imo.  Or maybe Fearsome Pirate is right.  There are days when that post resonates with me.

Here is an interesting article that was linked by Thom Rainer about how the church could respond to some shifts in culture viewed through the lens of Netflix’s growth and strategy.  When I speak of change in a church setting, I have these sorts of things in mind.  I think many other people hear the word “change” and think of new programs, a different worship style, or shifting on hot topic social issues.  None of those strike me as actual change on a deep level though, at least as far as the institution goes.  They still are in the same paradigm.  It’s kind of like Bart Ehrman going from being a fundamentalist Christian to a fundy whatever he is now.  His paradigm didn’t really change at all.  He just switched sides.

Jason Blair wrote:
The thing to wrestle with is this: Am I more comfortable as the guy who is more “liberal” in a conservative group, or the more “conservative” guy in a more liberal group. I have a hunch it’s the latter.

First off, prayers for you as you discern your way through this. Sounds like a good and relatively safe way to learn if nothing else. I think this question is an interesting one, and it’s one I ask myself occasionally. I guess I’ve thought being more liberal in a conservative group is easier, but maybe that’s because in my denominational situation, I am more conservative in what can be a pretty liberal group and I constantly feel like I’m being told that people who think like me are basically idiot monsters on the wrong side of history. Anyway, I thought that was an interesting question. I do know that feeling like I don’t quite fit in gets old.

Fearsome Pirate wrote:
I bring this up because the same people who are into this locavore/organic/etc movement are the same people who loudly agitate for all the bans, strictures, and costs that make it impossible for anyone to compete with Big Agriculture and corporate grocery chains.

I knew this guy who ran a little butcher shop across the street. He fried up fresh pork rinds every couple of days. Could he do that here? I doubt it. By the time the corner butcher has complied with everything, his costs would be so high that the local Walmart’s shrink-wrapped stuff, which they shipped in from all over, would just kill him on price.

I’m definitely a locavore/organic guy. I think monsanto is evil. So yeah, I guess I’m that guy…

But I’m not – because I totally agree with your assessment of the codes and laws and what not. I would argue that the big producers work hand in hand with the government to make the law more friendly towards them. And it totally weeds out the small guy as competition. There is a ridiculous case of that here in Michigan involving a pig farmer who has been absolutely harassed by the state government in an attempt to shut down his farm and strip him of his livelihood. Where I differ from your definition of organic/locavore guy is that I would rather deregulate and take away subsidies and let people pay the actual cost of their food. I think in that instance the local guy is going to come out much more competitive. And if you want fruit in the winter in the North, I don’t care. I eat that too. I would just rather buy organic and/or from local people I know when possible, even if it costs more. There are plenty of folks out there who are more libertarian in their organic/locavore thinking.

….that’s what He said – PLUS SCI FI!


Thanks for linking that. IT described what I thought the pope was trying to say, which is “we know and appreciate good from God’s natural law”. At least, that’s my take away from it.

Speaking of Natural law, I’m about 1/3rd of the way through the list of joint Hugo/Nebula winners, and I’m on a book by Ursula K Le Guin called The Dispossessed. I think Jeremy would like it, and The Pirate would hate it. Mainly its about a hyper-socialist group of people who once left the homeworld to live in a communistic utopia and their subsequent return/reintegration with a capitalist world. Its pretty riveting even for someone who has zero interest in economic systems/theory.
EDIT: Saw Andy’s post after I posted mine:
Congrat’s Andy, and hope your wife has a speedy recovery!

retractions and modifications

Baumeister’s source for women being more likely to be violent pulls up just a d 0.05, while the d 0.15 of men inflicting injury seems far more significant. Baumeister’s own earlier work established that men are all around most likely to be engaging in violent and criminal behavior, particularly between 15 and 29. He also established that the people most likely to be violent within marriage are men with traditional patriarchal views of marriage and gender. The study Baumeister cited has been relative recent.  It postdates publication of Baumeister’s 1999 book on violence and aggression where RB noted that globally young males rule crime and aggression stats, no surprise.  His observation that patriarchal sympathizing males were at the top of the abusive heap should also not be a surprise to anyone.  Even though the study he cited indicated women are slightly more likely to be violent the d 0.05 seems just a bit too small to seem like it would automatically matter. 

So I retract the earlier Baumeister reference about women being far more likely to be aggressive.  It’s not actually the case.  For that matter not only did I misconstrue Baumeister’s reference but when I finally dug up the cited paper 0.05 seems too statistically negligible to be certain of accuracy.  Daniel Kahneman wrote that many social science studies fall short of viability because they’re conducted with sample sizes too small to avoid sampling bias ruining the viability of the study.  Even assuming that wasn’t what was in play here the disparity between a slightly higher tendency for women and the higher rate of injury for men doesn’t suggest feminist or non-feminist concerns about abusive men are problems.  Depending on the state 85% of domestic violence cases involve men as recently as a year or so ago.  A study done more than a decade ago before the real estate bubble and a few other problems happened is not really applicable twelve years later. 

If the crime stats don’t lie then men are still the most violent and the men who are most committed to a traditionally patriarchal role for men within marriage and for women are most likely to be physically abusive.  Whether or not any or all branches of feminist thought can be considered lies that statistical detail about violent patriarchal men can’t be skated over.  But as Baumeister noted years ago, the tendency toward violence crops up readily when the woman has come from a higher economic, social, or educational status than the man and a conflict arises.  The man in that situation is much more likely to resort to violence to even the score. Baumeister noted that in half the cases of domestic violence cycles of mutual verbal and physical aggression were common.  Of note in the source Baumeister cited is that the sample skews younger. Not that parents needed a big scientific study to observe that teenagers are idiots in risk assessment while they imagine future rewards there’s brain research that shows how that works now.  There’s also brain research showing that when you fall in love whole regions of your brain shut off (congratulations to newlyweds everywhere, part of your brain just shut down for the next three to seven years). 

A matter for consideration, Fearsome, it is tempting to say that people will dismiss something until it’s convenient and on that note you’re Exhibit A yourself within the annals of the BHT: 

 Fearsome Pirate writes:
He’s not “hugely influential” with me. Can he terminate my lease on my apartment? Shut down my Internet? Call me in for an audit? Fire me? Send me to jail? Take away my TV?
 I guess I look at it this way–some people will be stuck in high school forever. Those people usually do not matter (sometimes they get jobs with the TSA, and then they matter). The only significance they have is the significance you give them in your mind.
 I dunno, I have a hard time expressing this. About a year ago, I had this epiphany where I realized that I get to decide what’s important to me, that I don’t have to let someone else make that decision for me. I realized that 95% of the people that various media sources (religious and secular) tell me I should be obsessed with actually have no effect on my life, and I stopped caring about them. It was really liberating. To a lot of people, Mark Driscoll is a Very Important Person. To me, he’s just some idiot with a Twitter account and some kind of showbizaplex in a city I hope to never visit.
 @ 7:10 pm July 14, 2011 | Permalink

My wife and I read Real Marriage together. It was pretty good. We enjoyed it. There was some stuff that was kind of meh, but you could say that about any book.

How exactly did Mark Driscoll go from “he’s just some idiot with a Twitter account … ” to having written a book you and your wife enjoyed in the time it took you to become a newlywed?  Even you can be shown to decide someone’s an idiot not worth paying attention to until he suddenly becomes worth paying attention to because you’ve managed to get a wife.  Well, falling in love does cause parts of the brain to shut down  so maybe that’s how the idiot with a twitter account suddenly managed to write a pretty good book while you weren’t paying attention to him. ;-)