Robert Jeffress: What’s Not to Like? (A Lot, Actually)

Rev. Robert Jeffress and his floppy Bible (D Magazine/Elizabeth Lavin)

At D Magazine, Michael Mooney writes a long profile of Robert Jeffress, the pastor of First Baptist Dallas.  Jeffress has said that Muhammed was a terrorist, that Mitt Romney is not a Christian, and that Oprah is a tool of Satan.  In spite, of that Mooney finds reason to like him:

Before I met Robert Jeffress, I wanted to hate him. Jeffress is the conservative preacher who made national headlines in October, when he called Mormonism a cult. He’s the senior pastor at First Baptist Dallas, the oldest megachurch in America, and I am certainly not a Baptist. He endorsed Rick Perry for president, and I’m definitely no fan of Perry’s. As a matter of fact, Robert Jeffress and I probably disagree on every major political and religious issue. And yet, I really, really like him.

It would be easy to dislike him if he were a hypocrite or a bigot, if he were an insufferable megalomaniac or the kind of man who preaches out of hate and anger. But he’s none of those things. He’s actually delightful to be around. He’s not just polite; he earnestly cares about people. He may not believe in evolution, but he really does want to know how your day has been. He may oppose certain rights for gay people, but he genuinely desires for you to be merry on Christmas. If he talks with you, he’s attentive and giving. He’s curious about you and about the world.

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A Big Year Comes to an End

This is me (and Courtney) leaving my dissertation defense in the rear-view mirror

This year, I finished my Ph.D., and I got married.  Two great accomplishments, of which I’m very proud.  Other things, of course, didn’t go so well, but tonight is not the night for that.  Tonight is to celebrate a year gone by, and to anticipate new adventures in 2012.

Happy New Year to you and yours!

Book Sale Ends at Midnight

Somehow, Doug and I convinced our publishers to drop the price on a number of our ebooks.  But the sale ends at midnight, so don’t wait any longer!

The Sacred Way
by Tony Jones
$9.99
$.99

Church In the Inventive Age
by Doug Pagitt
$9.99
$.99
Preaching in the Inventive Age
by Doug Pagitt
$9.99
$.99
The Church Is Flat
by Tony Jones
$9.77
$.99

Divine Intervention
by Tony Jones
$7.99
$.99

Ask Seek Knock
by Tony Jones
$7.99
$.99

Teaching of the Twelve
by Tony Jones
$7.69
$2.99

Emergent Manifesto of Hope
by Doug Pagitt and Tony Jones
$6.15
$1.99

Listening to the Beliefs of Emerging Churches
including Doug Pagitt
$12.99
$.99

 

Some Blogs I Discovered in 2011

Rachel Held Evans – We all discovered her, didn’t we?  An evangelical (or is she post-evangelical) woman who isn’t afraid of bullies like Mark Driscoll.

Slacktivist – Fred Clark manages to make the Left Behind series interesting, and he is a witty mouthpiece for progressive Christianity.

John Shore – He receives letters that should make any homophobic Christian think twice, and he is an indefatigable ally of GLBT folks in the church.

Media Decoder – The fascinating compilation of media journalists from the New York Times, including those featured in the excellent documentary, Page One.  (I also read, and loved, David Carr’s Night of the Gun, and asked if he’s the new St. Augustine.)

Storied Theology – Fuller prof Daniel Kirk is a step the the right of me, but his posts on the Bible are thoughtful and deep. (I’ll be posting about his new book in January.)

Scrolling though my Google Reader list, it’s notable, and a bit sad, to see how many good bloggers haven’t posted in a long, long time.  I attribute that, in part, to Facebook, because I see most of those people writing there a lot.  But Facebook updates have neither the length (aka, depth) or links that a blog post has.  Alas.  I hope some of them will resolve to blog again in 2012.

What blogs did you discover in 2011?

What blogs went dormant that you miss?

Or, better yet, convince us to start reading your blog in 2012!


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