I have written elsewhere about how our martial spirit–so common in nations of the past–has been sublimated into sports. We are allowed to support our troops only by pitying them, not celebrating their prowess when they kill their enemies. But we can celebrate the victories and even the brutality of our sports teams. Here is a perfect illustration, a terrific sports column by Sally Jenkins on the New England Patriots, whose clash with the also undefeated Indianapolis Colts should be… Read more

The global revival of Islam is more than just jihadi terrorists. The other facet is untold oil wealth, which translates into power. Yes, the jidhadists despise the authoritarian sheiks, but the scale of the latter’s riches is staggering. Read this about the emirate of Dubai. Then go here for a slide show of its grandiose, opulent, and rather creepy architecture, including plans for the world’s tallest building, all designed by the world’s most cutting-edge postmodernist architects and built on the… Read more

One of the biggest selling novels in Turkey is entitled Metal Storm, which imagines a war between the United States and Turkey. The war is precipitated by Kurdish terrorists from Iraq, as in recent real-life developments, but it is motivated by the Americans’ desire to conquer the world (with a sinister “evangelical Christian” president advised by the evil Condoleeza Rice and Donald Rumsfeld). After suffering terrible devastation from U.S. bombing, a coalition of Russia and the European Union block the… Read more

Apple is sponsoring a filmmaking contest in which, at a certain time, specific requirements are posted (the film must show a park bench, use an edit known as a match cut, etc.). Entrants then have 24 hours to make a 3-minute movie. They submit it online, then the world watches it and rates it. Those that rate the best get a laptop and a viewing from Hollywood professionals. Some of my students did an entry and you’ve got to see… Read more

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On the old site, we blogged about a church growth guru who came to admit that contemporary worship is NOT an effective evangelism tool. Now, the church growth pioneer, Bill Hybel of Willow Creek, is admitting that his techniques for building megachurches do NOT make for mature Christians. That confession is in a new book by Willow Creek staff members Greg L. Hawkins and Cally Parkinson entitled <a href="Reveal Where Are You?”>Reveal Where Are You?. Says Hybels: Some of the… Read more

Contemporary Christianity bears some unsettling similarities to that of the late Middle Ages. Today, many ostensible evangelicals have what is basically a Roman Catholic view of salvation, marginalizing the Gospel and trusting in their good works to earn salvation. Superstition and materialism abound, as in the “prosperity gospel” that dominates the bestseller lists and Christian television. Many churches and church leaders, as in the age of the late Middle Ages, seem obsessed with ostentatious wealth and political power. Immorality is… Read more

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Is trick-or-treating dangerous now, with the threat of poisoned candy from all of the real-life monsters out there? That is the impression of many parents. Actually, though, all that talk of poisoned treats is an urban legend. It’s not true. Needles and razor blades in apples, though, have been found, though very rarely. I know what some of you are thinking: But that happened to a friend of a friend of mine! But such second-degree sourcing is a mark of… Read more

On an earllier blog post, I complained about how Halloween is getting ever more gruesome, sexualized, and taken over by adults. But now I read that companies are making–and apparently parents are buying–sexually-oriented costumes for little girls! Pre-teens! As young as 8! Read this and be appalled: Gabby is 11. And the Playboy Racy Referee costume was only the latest that her mother had vetoed one pre-Halloween-crazed afternoon at Party City in Baileys Crossroads as too skimpy, too revealing, too… Read more

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