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Friday, April 12, 2019

Whatever Happened to the Bible?

Whatever Happened to the Bible?

Lots of polls and anecdotal evidence show that even Christians are increasingly illiterate—that is, biblically illiterate. The reasons for this are many, like the Bible is just too hard to understand. I’m not actually convinced this is the core reason (you’ll hear more about that when I start posting a series after Easter at CT online), but there is no question the Bible is a difficult book in parts. The Bible Project has come along to remedy that, and the people there are doing amazing work, using video clips very creatively.
Whatever Ever Happened to the Senate?
According to Matthew Walter, the real US Senate is the Supreme Court. This and other observations about the current way we do democracy made a few light bulbs flash in my mind, helping me make sense of how our democracy is evolving organically to respond to the times. I’ll be interested to see if many political scientists see any value in his analysis.
Women’s Power Over Men
Now for the unexpected: A woman defending what others call sexual harassment she experienced working in a restaurant as a teen. Naturally, there are some things that Christian ethics would frown upon in #NotMe: On Harassment, Empowerment, and Feminine Virtue. And yet there are some things that just seem more sensible than a lot of conversation around the topic. Like:
I learned that I had a lot more power over men than I originally thought—not simply because, as a cute young thing, I was awakening to my own feminine sexuality and realized how keenly the guys wanted me to like them, but because I had more power than I realized to reject their advances, to assert my sense of sexual agency not because it was a private and protected part of me, but precisely because it was so openly commented upon.
Progress for Pilgrim’s Progress
Besides the Bible, there was a time when The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan was the book most treasured by Christians. Even a generation ago, CT asked evangelical leaders what book besides the Bible had most interested them, and I recall that many said The Pilgrim’s Progress. The classic may have fallen out of favor today, but Revelation Media is trying to fix that.
To be transparent, they helped CT finance a podcast series that unpacks some of the story and themes in The Pilgrim’s Progress. It’s part of their efforts to make people aware of a feature-length animated film they’ve created that will be shown in many theaters across the country on April 18 and 20. I’ve only seen the trailer, so I cannot honestly review it here. I suspect it will have all the strengths and weaknesses of the classic allegory. It is clearly family friendly and may be a good teaching tool for children.
In the meantime, check out the podcast series, The Way to Glory, hosted by Richard Clark, and see if this doesn’t make you want to read it again, or for the first time. (FYI: The Galli Report has not been paid to say all this. I just think this series especially is one for GR podcast listeners to be aware of.)
Holy Week Humor
Well, it’s not about Holy Week as such, but it is a funny piece that satirizes today’s media culture obsession with power dynamics: “Report Reveals that Jesus Christ May Have Benefited from Father’s Influential Position to Gain High-Powered Role as Lord and Savior.
Grace and peace,

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