Pray that you will be among those ‘left behind’


To promote their Rapture mythology, “Bible prophecy” enthusiasts turn to Matthew 24, as read through the filter of the Scofield Bible and the lyrics of a Larry Norman song. But Larry and Scofield very clearly get that passage wrong. They’re reading it backwards. In Matthew 24, getting “left behind” is a Good Thing. [Read more...]

There were voices down the corridor

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Ah yes, the “Hotel California” urban legend, widely embraced by white evangelicals eager to believe that the Eagles’ hit song was a detailed allegory about the Church of Satan. This applied the interpretive approach evangelicals had taught themselves for reading Genesis, Revelation, and the Sermon on the Mount — read the metaphors literally and the literal statements as metaphors. Thus a song about selling one’s soul to the music industry turns into a song about musicians actually selling their souls. [Read more...]

White guys in charge frustrated by their inability to silence all women (Part MXVII)

Second-generation punchline Jerry Falwell Jr.

There’s a pattern here with angry authoritarian men like Falwell getting puffed up with indignation because this woman is saying intolerable things. (By which they mean there is a woman saying things, without their permission, and that this is, to them, intolerable.) [Read more...]

It can happen here: Trumpism, Franklin Graham, and respectable white evangelicalism

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The widespread popular support for Trump and Trumpism has been the subject of much consternation among white evangelical leaders dismayed to realize that much of that support is coming from their own white evangelical tribe. This, inexplicably, suprises them. It does not surprise me. Nothing that Donald Trump is saying on the campaign trail is substantially different from what Franklin Graham has been posting on Facebook for years now. [Read more...]

Let’s give top evangelical leaders fancy titles, robes and mitres


I’m starting to think that what white evangelicalism needs these days is more fancy titles, elaborate finery, symbolic vestments, regalia and all the appurtenances of church leadership. I’m talking mitres, staffs (staves?), rings, bling, embroidered cassocks, the whole nine yards. Why would I, as a determinedly anti-hierarchical Baptist, endorse such a thing? [Read more...]

Wheaton College and creationism (ongoing)

"Mrs. Ples" is one of the most famous H. naledi fossils found in the caves of Sterkfontein. Just looking at this photograph puts you in violation of Wheaton College's Statement of Faith.

Dr. Hawkins’ “worship the same God” comment was in no way a violation of Wheaton’s Statement of Faith — a fact acknowledged behind closed doors even by the provost intent on punishing her for it. Her reference to Sterkfontein, however, may have been. Why, then, did Wheaton’s administrators choose to make her a scapegoat on the baseless pretext of the former rather than going after her on the latter issue where they could credibly claim a more substantive case? [Read more...]


Wheaton College president Philip Ryken

This is just a hasty, random assortment of recent news items illustrating the ongoing wave of brute stupidity and hatred toward Muslim people here in America. This is something that should be opposed by any respectable educational institution. This is something that should be opposed by any follower of Jesus Christ. This is something that should be opposed by any minimally decent person who is not a fool or an asshole. [Read more...]

Two Corinthians and Three Isaiahs


“Third Isaiah” is, in fact, fightin’ words in many white evangelical churches and institutions — even though the reference is not at all controversial (we might even say “innocuous”) among most evangelical clergy. This, again, reflects the gulf between what I’ve sometimes called the evangelical “faculty lounge” and the general evangelical populace. Evangelical leaders know many things that they cannot speak of outside of the faculty lounge. [Read more...]