Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Don't miss these: 11/5/08

While I'm mulling over my chair-over-the-head post, here are some notes, as well as some particularly good quotations, for your edification. So let's have at it:
  • Love the satirical Onion's headline: Black Man Given Nation's Worst Job. Article's not as funny.
  • Lisa Schiffren remarks: "Now that Barack Obama is our president, because a majority of Americans of all races voted for to elect him, I hope our leaders will feel free to treat him no differently than any other head of the opposition party. That is what being post-racial means. It's time. Certainly we have had no problem doing that with the women who rise to power."
  • Mark Steyn: "Whatever one feels about 'compassionate conservatism', Bush at least wrapped up his departures from orthodoxy into a reasonably coherent worldview. McCain never did. He had a biography but no platform."
  • John Hinderaker observes that this win, while considerable, constitutes no landslide.
  • Peter Kirsanow says fight. The way he means it, I say he's right.
  • I'll Retire To Bedlam Alert: Byron York says that black voters in California supported Proposition 8 (undoing homosexual "marriage) by a ratio of 70% to 30%. Black voters. That would be the voters who supported Obama by a ratio of 493% to 0%. Barack Obama. That would be the man opposed Proposition 8, and who will stack the judiciary with a philosophy of "empathy" over law. Which will, in other words, overturn Prop 8. Which blacks supported, 70% to 30%. Got that?

UPDATES:
  • Want to thank Governor Palin, the only one to come out of this debacle smelling like a rose? Click here. I did.

28 comments:

Phil Johnson said...

Peter Pike has some insightful, dispassionate commentary in which he finds reasons to be optimistic.

Also, it appears Prop 8 passed in California.

Philippians 4:6.

NothingNewUnderTheSun said...

Have you read the latest nonsense from Brian Mclaren today?

http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/brian_d_mclaren/2008/11/the_maturing_of_america.html

“During this election, I felt that our nation was poised between the chance to grow up a little and the chance to prolong its adolescence a little longer. By choosing Barack Obama, I believe, we've chosen to mature into a more responsible and humble young adulthood as a nation.”

eastendjim said...

That Prop 8 quote is just strange.

The Doulos said...

Re: the supporters of Prop 8 and Obama - I was equally perplexed by a Facebook friend who was supporting B. H. O. and Prop 8. My question was - how do you reconcile those two positions? But then, he's Canadian...

Also, seems to be that with all the focus on electing a black man to the Oval Office, and that being such a driving factor in many votes - that seems to indicate that we in fact are not past the racial divisions in America. Just turning them sideways. Seems that we in fact may really not have done what ML King dreamed of - "judging a man not by the color of his skin but by the content of his character."

Mike Riccardi said...

Doulos,

Amen.

But, you know, you're a racist for saying so.

DJP said...

I see your "racist," and raise you an accusation that you're a self-hating white for saying that.

CR said...

doulous: the supporters of Prop 8 and Obama - I was equally perplexed by a Facebook friend who was supporting B. H. O. and Prop 8. My question was - how do you reconcile those two positions? But then, he's Canadian...

It was partly deception, Doulous. I mentioned in another meta about getting some campaign stuff in the mail about these black churches saying vote yes on prop 8 and reminding voters that Obama is not for gay marriage. Technically correct, (as far as words stated), but Obama was against prop 8. He will also apppoint judges that will loosely interpret the Constitution and grant gay marriage as a fundamental right.

Libbie said...

And naturally, my liberal worldling acquaintances aren't even happy with that - "Yes, America can pretend it's not racist, but they're still anti-gay bigots etc."

I love my country. But sometimes I really love yours more.

The Doulos said...

Hey, I'll have you know I am a native of and live in one of the most diverse parts of the US - central Nebraska.

Actually, we are pretty diverse with all the various Latino groups (Mexican, Guatemalan, Honduran, El Salvadoran etc) in the area. Many of which are my friends and bros/sis in Christ. But I digress...

Jay said...

I actually argued with some gay friends of mine that Obama was not hardly as pro-gay as they were being led to believe, and that if the Hispanic and African-American vote turned out in full force, all of the propositions in California, Florida, and Arizona would pass. And hey, I was right. The whole situation is rather sad, really.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Phil Johnson: "Peter Pike has some insightful, dispassionate commentary in which he finds reasons to be optimistic."

PJ, what do you think of the following commentary?

"Voices within Christendom will assert that evangelicals have spent too much time on politics, with little to show for it. What’s really needed, so the claim will go, is more time preaching the gospel. Well, I’m all for preaching the gospel, but why should anyone suppose that political efforts aimed at protecting human life detract from the biblical command to go make disciples? Why can’t pro-life Christians do both? Simply put, the answer to a lack of evangelical fervor for the gospel is not to withdraw our political advocacy for the weak and vulnerable; it’s to encourage Christians to do a better job presenting the gospel. We don’t have to stop advocating protections for the innocent to do that."

joey said...

fyi

florida's gay marriage ban passed 62-32 (it needed 60% to pass in florida). the black vote on the matter was 70-30, and considering Obama's effectiveness in getting the black vote out this election, he can probably be credited with the passing of the ammendments in fla and cal

threegirldad said...

Dan,

I see your "self-hating white," and raise you a finger-waggin' scolding for daring to even voice an opinion on the subject...because you're white.

Phil Johnson said...

TUaD: "PJ, what do you think of the following commentary?"

I like Scott Klusendorf. I like his energy and the clarity with which he expresses himself. However:

1. I've never actually seen, in all the Klusendorf items I have read, a clear exposition of the gospel. There may be one posted out there somewhere. But if so, it has completely escaped my notice, and I certainly don't hear him regularly proclaiming gospel truth in the midst of his efforts to lobby for political reform against abortion.

2. Klusendorf's network of political allies includes many anti-abortion Catholics. I wonder how long that network could hang together if Klusendorf did actually feature a clear declaration of the gospel as one of the key points in the message he is known for.

3. Klusendorf asks, "Why can’t pro-life Christians do both [gospel preaching and political lobbying]?" Perhaps the better question is, Why do most of them NOT do both?

See: I think a case could be made to suggest that Klusendorf is a living example of the very problem he is denies the existence of.

Perhaps I'm wrong. I haven't read everything he has posted on line. If someone knows of a place where Scott has explained and affirmed the principle of sola fide, I would be happy to revise my opinion, but it seems to me that when Dave Armstrong is happy to commend your ministry with enthusiasm, you probably aren't entitled to complain when someone wonders if you are toning down gospel for the sake of a political agenda.

Phil Johnson said...

PS:

I wonder if we have not reached a point where evangelical political activism is going to be relegated to third-party status anyway.

That, I think, would change the equation.

Which would be more fruitful for Reformed and biblical Christians to invest their resources in? A Ralph-Nadirian and quixotic third-party political quest--or more gospel ministry that's more clear, more straightforward, and more aggressive than ever? It seems to me the choice between those two options would be easy for serious-minded Christians, and if that's the way ahead for the future, I have no doubt it will be good in the long run.

CR said...

Joey: florida's gay marriage ban passed 62-32 (it needed 60% to pass in florida). the black vote on the matter was 70-30, and considering Obama's effectiveness in getting the black vote out this election, he can probably be credited with the passing of the ammendments in fla and cal

Joey, I think, if we all stop and meditate on this for a moment, it's actually stunning to contemplate what happened here. The Lord used the evil motives of black minorities to come to the polls because they wanted to vote for a candidate because he was black (and ignoring his pro-abortionist and pro-infanticide positions), but mixed with that evil motives the Lord used, to give the winnings needed to ban gay marriage in these states.

Black minorities are very much against gay marriage and they were needed to give the winning majorities. If not for the Obama candidacy, some of those blacks would not go to the polls and we might have gay marriage now.

We of course need to be cognizant though that Obama would appoint liberal judges to to overrule the states, but let's be hopeful He would remember mercy and not allow that.

Becky, a slave of Christ said...

Handsome new graphics. Something to admire while waiting for "the post".

Phil Johnson said...

Re: Scott Klusendorf

OK, I scoured the Google links to "Scott Klusendorf" with the word "gospel" and found this all by myself, about five pages into Google's results.

In that article, Scott does give a brief summary of the principle of sola fide and emphatically affirms it. He does this as a response to Mr. Beckwith's apostasy, not in the context of his discussions about the sin of abortion.

In any case, I'm happy to report that there is at least this one instance of Klusendorf's doing what I formerly said I was unable to find him doing.

The problem is that in the process of going through all those Google links, I found dozens of places where Scott argues that it's OK for anti-abortion activists and their organizations to omit the gospel from the center of their mission.

On the one hand, Scott can be counted on always to reply to qualms about evangelical political obsession vs. gospel-centered ministry by telling us that it is possible to do both/and.

On the other hand, he defends the argument that both/and is an unreasonable standard to insist on with evangelical activists and their organizations, because the pro-life movement is a "cultural reform effort." Presumably, Scott holds the opinion that the gospel is immaterial (or at least optional) in these politically-driven kinds of "cultural reform."

(What I think he is tacitly acknowledging is that if we inject the gospel into the political apparatus of the pro-life movement, we will undermine the ecumenicity that is inherent in that movement. Which is what I have been saying for years.)

Anyway, the whole thing has me thinking, and if time permits, I'll do a blogpost later this week at TeamPyro in reply to Klusendorf's article. In the meantime, I wanted to point to the above article, which is at least one example of what I formerly said I had been unable to find.

Keep an eye on Teampyro for more, if I can carve out some time to write a proper post.

DJP said...

Keep an eye on Teampyro for more

Troll.

CR said...

PJ: The problem is that in the process of going through all those Google links, I found dozens of places where Scott argues that it's OK for anti-abortion activists and their organizations to omit the gospel from the center of their mission.

I don't think I would necessarily disagree with anything that Scott has said here. I have mentioned in other metas (with the help of DA Carson's book Christ and Culture Revisited) that as Christians we are obligated in the society we live to make things better - i.e. cultural reform, but none of that precludes me to proclaim the gospel where I'm at, whether it is at the fire station in a pro-life movement or at my own job.

Nothing prevents us at our jobs during lunch or breaks or in conversations to work on people to try to establish a framework (talk about creation, providence and sin and therefore a need for a Savior)to introduce the gospel.

Our purpose for being at our jobs is not just to provide for our families and churches but I think to proclaim the gospel where we are at. It's no less likely to happen in a pro-life movement than it is in other endeavors. The reason why it doesn't happen is because most of us are afraid and uncomfortable because Christ is so marginalized in our lives that it doesn't become natural to proclaim the gospel. I can tell that happens in many "secular" endeavors.

So, if I understand Scott correctly, I don't think that theological correctness has to be a mission in pro-life movement anymore than it needs to be a mission for the organization I work for - Healthcare industry.

But none of that stops me from reforming the industry where I am at - the best way is to reform the people in that industry via proclaiming the gospel.

Mesa Mike said...

Oh, fer...!

What's with Carl Cameron ripping into Sarah Palin?

Et tu, Fox News?

DJP said...

Because Fox News isn't the right-wing propaganda-machine the Dems like to say. Simply because they occasionally present both sides of a story, that puts them well to the right of the pack. But it hardly makes them right-wing.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

"Anyway, the whole thing has me thinking, and if time permits, I'll do a blogpost later this week at TeamPyro in reply to Klusendorf's article."

PJ, I'm glad that I might have played a small role in helping you do a re-think on this issue. If you recall, we did have a respectful skirmish earlier this year on this topic at TeamPyro. I do look forward to reading your post at TeamPyro.

As well, I truly admire and respect the mind and heart that God has given you. As well as your sense of humor because I know I couldn't get away with the teasing that you're a "troll" like DJP did.

;-)

Pax.

Phil Johnson said...

TUaD: "I'm glad that I might have played a small role in helping you do a re-think on this issue."

Well, before you get all excited, I didn't say I am rethinking my position.

What I am saying is that I could not help noticing the paucity of actual gospel content in Klusendorf's Web content compared to the amount of energy he has spent criticizing ministers and others who think the gospel should be a higher priority than political activism. That more or less seems to refute his insistence that he favors the both/and approach. That's what I have been thinking about and am planning to blog about.

So if you're thinking I might be about to join forces with the Roman Catholic Church in my town to propose ballot measures for the next election, sorry to disappoint.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

PJ: "So if you're thinking I might be about to join forces with the Roman Catholic Church in my town to propose ballot measures for the next election, sorry to disappoint."

Troll alert!

;-)

What?? No ecumenical hand-holding with the RCC?

Fundamentalist.

;-)

Rachael Starke said...

Phil - I've been turning the whole political/cultural activism piece of the abortion issue as it relates to this electoral autopsy today. I'm beginning to wonder if one of the church's many, many sins -in this particular cultural issue of abortion, at this signficant point in time - is in its overly broad definition/rejection of "political activism", and in its insistence on giving an automatic, Do-Not-Pass-Go-Go-Directly-To-Gospel-Compromise-Jail card to those who appear to be working within that narow definition.

Here's a (not so) hypothetical question that I hope you'll adress in the Team Pyro piece. Suppose someone came to the elder board of Grace Church and said:

"My love for God and those created in His image is such that I want to form an organization that seeks to be an agent of the Holy Spirit to eradicate the evil of abortion.

This organization will attempt to answer critics who argue that Christians fight for life before it's born, but abandon it after it's born. It will focus on meeting the physical needs of both the mother and the child. It will intentionally not focus on legislation.

It will actively solicit the support of other Christians, Jews, Mormons, Muslims, atheists and agnostics.

I belive that the God who sovereignly chose me before the foundation of the world has also called others yet to be born to Himself, and I want to use whatever means, including the willing efforts of those whom God has (it seems) not called, to give those yet to be born physical life, so that He might give them spiritual life in His time."

Would the elders of Grace Church support that effort?

I ask merely for information. :)

Phil Johnson said...

Rachael: "Would the elders of Grace Church support that effort?"

No. Because the "actively solicit the support of other Christians, Jews, Mormons, Muslims, atheists and agnostics" contradicts the "be an agent of the Holy Spirit" part. And when there is tension between two contradictory goals like that, we know which one will win out.

Grace's elders once turned down a request like that from a moderately well-known evangelical leader who wanted support for an organization that would unite Muslims, Hindus, and Wiccans in worldwide efforts to lobby for "religious liberty."

Now, I'm opposed to religious persecution. (I am speaking here about real persecution, where someone's life is at stake over matters of conscience--not the "persecution" pomos imagine they suffer whenever someone with real convictions says Brian McLaren is wrong.)

For one mere man to subject another mere man to threats of physical violence or death because of what he believes is a horrible injustice--even if the one so threatened is a Rastafarian who worships Heili Selassie and the one issuing the threats is a Calvinist who knows all three volumes of Turretin by heart.

Still, linking arms with everyone from the Amish to Zoroastrians to fight for religious liberty worldwide is a bad idea, and a misuse of the church's resources.

For similar reasons, I think it is a bad idea for the church to support any ostensibly pro-life organization whose very purpose statement announces up front that we are not going to proclaim the gospel.

The problem is, that approach is not really "pro-life" at all in the deepest evangelical sense.

CR said...

Rachael,

I'm not clear on one thing with your question. Would you be asking if it's okay for you to do that or are you asking to use church resources for that. If the former, you would not need any elder permission, if the latter, I would concur with PJ, I don't know that any church resources should be used.