With the revelation this week that the NSA (No Such Agency) is spying on Americans by looking at their internet wanderings, I’m curious what our spymasters think of Internet Monk? Are there any who moonlight as commenters? Are they researching who this Mule Chewing Briars dude is? And what do they make of the Synonymous Rambler? For that matter, what do you make of the Synonymous Rambler? What do you make of the NSA and PRISM? What do you say … we ramble?
How much do you know about Calvinism? Do you know a TULIP from a daisy? Find out just where you stand by taking this short quiz.
How did you do? If you answered all of the questions correctly, you could be a Southern Baptist. This week in Houston, Baptists of the Southern persuasion will be gathering to discuss, among other topics, a report titled “Truth, Trust, and Testimony in a Time of Tension.” Seems that Calvinism is rising in popularity among some Baptist pastors and seminaries, thus causing the tension.
The Synonymous Rambler tells me that, in anticipation of the SBC’s gathering in Houston, there is a new Texas Bible that converts “you plural” into “y’all.” My only question is why it took someone this long …
Fortunately, we don’t have to wait until the Baptists start meeting in order to hear the latest proclamation from their pope, Al Mohler. Rev. Al has come down from the mount with this revelation: The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America 1) is not evangelical, 2) does not live up to Martin Luther’s convictions and faith, and 3) should not even be considered a church. Good thing these non-evangelical, Luther-hating, non-churches meet in America. Hey, one out of four ain’t bad.
Oh those crazy Anglicans. I have no idea what a “wanker” is, and I’m positive I don’t want to know, but wouldn’t you just love to hear John Piper call Mark Driscoll a wanker? Perhaps we need to have some of our brethren from across the waves come and give us some lessons on how to insult one another.
Then there is American Rob Bell, who went on the radio in England—on a Christian talk show, mind you—and said a dirty word. Which prompted this cartoon, which, I want you to know, has a dirty word and a filthy word in it. If you are easily offended … well, too late for that, huh? You wouldn’t be reading Saturday Ramblings if you were easily offended. Let me just say we will not tolerate words like that used here. And I am being serious.
Speaking of obscene, the Richmond (Virginia) Outreach Center canned four of their pastors this week for being sexual predators, liars and bullies. I’m still waiting for evangelical leaders to step up with support of these men. Anyone? Anyone?
Vero Beach, Florida will apparently not be celebrating Humanist Recognition Week later this month. You can read about it in this very objective, unbiased news story. But if you want to celebrate humanism while you’re in Florida, take heart. You can travel to Bradford County, Florida where you will see the first Atheist Monument in the United States. Be sure to bring lots of film for your camera.
And make your plans for next year to take in the Ark Encounter in Kentucky. (Denise, you really need to keep these people on a leash!) As part of the ride, you’ll get to experience the 10 plagues that ravaged Egypt. Wow. Nothing says amusement-park ride like reenacting disasters that killed thousands of people. I hope they will consider adding a Black Plague ride, or a Spanish Flu petting zoo, or a tsunami water park.
Sad to hear that Will D. Campbell passed away this week at the age of 88. He was the inspiration for the Rev. Will B. Dunn in the cartoon strip Kudzu. Campbell preached with his actions, most often defending the civil rights of individuals or groups. The NY Times obituary gives a good overview of Campbell’s life.
Before we get to this week’s celebrity birthdays, here is what you have been waiting for: a photo slide show of celebrity Christians. You know, I’m surprised no one has come up with celebrity Christian bubblegum cards yet. I’ll trade you a Kirk Cameron and a Jane Fonda for a Bob Dylan.
Ok, birthday greetings went out this week to Nelson Riddle; Andy Griffith; Norma Jean Baker; Pat Boone; Ron Wood; Charlie Watts; Marvin Hamlisch; Jerry Mathers; Boots Randolph; Tony Curtis; Ian Hunter; John Paul Jones; Steve Vai; Tom Jones; Dean Martin; and Liam Neeson.
Charlie Watts, the steady one, is 72 years old. Ronnie Wood is the baby of the group at 67. Mick and Keef each turn 70 later this year. And last week they rocked like only they can do. This first bonus video is from their show in Chicago where they invited their former guitarist Mick Taylor to join them on a few numbers. This is my favorite of their songs, and I like most all of them. Who am I talking about? Please. If you have to ask, then you needn’t bother listening. Enjoy.
Here is an earlier number—looks like something from a late 80s/early 90s tour. Did you think they would still be going strong all these years later? Ok, did you think they would still be alive all these years later? Enjoy this one, too.