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March 5, 2003

Fred Clark of Slacktivist, who may conceivably know a bit more about evangelical Christianity than New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, has some sharp words about Kristof’s latest:
Apparently we’ve all been sleeping through the latest Awakening. Who knew?

The first GA laid much of the intellectual framework for the American Revolution. GA2 was a branch—perhaps the main branch—of the abolitionist movement. GA3 was tied up in the Progressive Movement. Its progeny included both Prohibition and the Social Gospel.

What we see today in America’s evangelical churches is a culturally determined faith bound up in parochial privilege. The millennial urgency of the second Great Awakening has been replaced with a premillennial pessimism, a dispensational irresponsibility and a circle-the-wagons laager mentality.

Clark has also been posting about My Utmost For His Highest, the devotional book by Oswald Chambers (1874-1917) that, allegedly, George W. Bush starts each day by reading from. Here, here, and here, Clark “reads along” with Bush, with interesting results. [07:16 AM]
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Comments on Fred Clark:

Meg ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2003, 01:19 PM:

The read-along links aren't going anywhere on my system -- I get error pages.
There is a strong suspicion that Bush believes enough to want to push for Armageddon -- the only question is why he wants to take the role of the Anti-Christ. Ah well, it's a dirty job. but he probably feels it is his holy obligation.

Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2003, 01:55 PM:

I dunno know about this Fourth Great Awakening. It isn't official unless a widely-publicized End of The World date has thousands of the faithful selling off their belongings and waiting on hilltops for the Rapture.

These things still happen, but only for small groups. Nothing like the big town-emptying EOTW vaporware events of the 19th century.

We need a good, solid, widely-accepted prediction from a respected main-line evangelical, and an advantageous date. I propose election day, 2004. Exact hour unknown, so arrive at the hill early, folks, and stay until 9:00 pm local time, just in case.

Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2003, 02:27 PM:

Stefan, I love your idea. Now where can we get an evangelical whose teeth we can wire for sound, and who's a true believer (so that when he hears the Voice Of God he'll listen). I suspect that by the time they get to be influential, there aren't many true believers left.

Bill Humphries ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2003, 06:58 PM:

Xopher's hack was demonstrated in the movie "Real Genius". [1]

The braces of the nasty professor's student assistant were 'wired'. Any doubts the assistant had that it was the voice of G_D were dispelled when Mitch commanded him to 'stop touching himself'.

Student assistant then proceeded to help turn nasty professor's house into giant popcorn popper at the direction of 'G_D'.

So what does 'G_D' say to an evangelical to convince said mark of 'His' authenticity?

I'm also reminded, whenever "The Rapture" is mentioned, of a story published in Pulphouse which likened the event to a pest control problem.

[1] http://us.imdb.com/Title?0089886

Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2003, 07:39 PM:

"So what does 'G_D' say to an evangelical to convince said mark of 'His' authenticity?"

Stoke the guy's ego by telling him he has a Mission.

Up the ante by bringing up that regrettable motel-room incident involving rubber sheets, a bucket of buttered okra, and a llama.

("But I never did that my Lord!"

"YOU HAVEN'T. YET.")

Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 06, 2003, 01:59 PM:

Yes, I was intending to put in a little pop-cultural reference there.