Michael Spencer, a.k.a. Internet Monk, has died of cancer. (Not to be confused with our own commenter on this blog Webmonk, who is still alive.) His <a href=”http://www.internetmonk.com/”>blog</a>, subtitled “Dispatches from the post-evangelical wilderness,” was a favorite site for honest theological and spiritual discussions. A Baptist minister who strugged with some of the trappings of evangelicalism, Spencer was influenced by, among others, the Christ-centered, Gospel-centered emphasis of Lutheranism, though he bemoaned the way Lutherans tend to shut themselves off from other Christians.
Trevin Wax has gleaned some of his favorite posts:
I Like the Prayer List
The prayer list frees us from the notion that the people of God are the healthy, happy ones who turned up for worship today. It reminds us that our community is extended into hospitals, nursing homes, psych hospitals, the homes of the poor, the relationships we have with other kinds of Christians and the mission we’re on together.
The prayer list is a picture of the broken and humbled body of Christ. It has a particular kind of beauty, and I’m glad our church- which hasn’t gotten around to a confession, covenant or constitution- has that prayer list.
It’s part of my journey these days to know that my name will one day be on that list, and these will be the people who will love and pray for me when my place in the church is to be ministered unto by the praying people of God.Grace is as Dangerous as Ever
When the quality of God’s mercy in the Gospel no longer amazes you, you will begin to justify the dilution of amazing grace into religious grace, or moral grace, or grace in response to something.
Real grace is simply inexplicable, inappropriate, out of the box, out of bounds, offensive, excessive, too much, given to the wrong people and all those things.
The Question is God; the Answer is Jesus
If you are going to think about God, go to Jesus and start there, stay there and end there.
This simple rule is too simple for the religious, the worldly wise, the power seeking and the proud.
It is infuriating to those who want to manipulate for money or distract for some personal agenda.
Jesus will break our idols, complicate our assumptions, overturn our tables and put himself squarely in the center of every question. He is the way, the truth, the life. He is the answer. He is the one way we think about, know, love, worship and relate to God.
When you think about God, go to Jesus.