Thursday, May 22, 2014

All Around the Web - May 22, 2014

Charles Krauthammer - The sound and the fury — and the tweet
Mass schoolgirl kidnapping in Nigeria — to tweet or not to tweet? Is hashtagging one’s indignation about some outrage abroad an exercise in moral narcissism or a worthy new way of standing up to bad guys?

The answer seems rather simple. It depends on whether you have the power to do something about the outrage in question. If you do, as in the case of the Obama administration watching Russia’s slow-motion dismemberment of Ukraine, it’s simply embarrassing when the State Department spokeswoman tweets the hashtag #UnitedForUkraine.

That is nothing but preening, a visual recapitulation of her boss’s rhetorical fatuousness when he sternly warns that if the rape of this U.S. friend continues, we are prepared to consider standing together with the “international community” to decry such indecorous behavior — or some such.

When a superpower, with multiple means at its disposal, reverts to rhetorical emptiness and hashtag activism, it has betrayed both its impotence and indifference. But if you’re an individual citizen without power, if you lack access to media, drones or special forces, then hashtagging your solidarity with the aggrieved is a fine gesture and perhaps even more.

Eric Geiger - Read or Get Out of the Ministry
John Wesley told young ministers to “read or get out of the ministry.” Those are strong words, but Wesley believed reading was essential for development. Of Wesley, A.W. Tozer wrote, “He read science and history with a book propped against his saddle pommel as he rode from one engagement to another.”

Oswald Sanders, in his classic work Spiritual Leadership, devotes a chapter to the subject of “The Leader & Reading” and insists that “the leader who intends to grow spiritually and intellectually will be constantly reading.”

While I would not consider myself a “reading expert,” reading has been a significant part of my development for the last 20 years. I view reading as an opportunity to interact with great thinkers and leaders. I typically am working through multiple books at a time. Before kids entered our world, I averaged reading two books a week. The quantity of my reading has slowed for this season, but I still take reading very seriously. Here are some suggestions based on my experiences with books.
Suggestions for reading:

John Stonestreet - The Irony of the New Tolerance
When it comes to same-sex “marriage,” our culture, just like our president, has definitely evolved. After all, it was only in 2008 that a strong majority in California—yes, California—passed Proposition 8 which defined marriage as between one man and one woman.

But when our president changed his mind a few months before the 2012 election, the cultural floodgates opened, particularly in the American workplace. Later that summer, Chick-fil-A faced angry boycotts when CEO Dan Cathy’s views and donations in favor of traditional marriage became public knowledge.

The workplace pressure has only continued. Christian bakers and photographers who do not want to participate in what they consider to be a sin have been fined and faced being shut down. Attempts to protect their religious liberty, such as Arizona’s State Bill 1062, have been crushed through threats of economic boycotts and media shaming.

More high-profile voices have also faced this smash-mouth, brass-knuckle treatment. Just weeks ago Brendan Eich, the accomplished founder and CEO of search-engine company Mozilla, was forced to resign when he was “outed” for donating all of $1,000 to Proposition 8 eight years ago.

Bible Gateway - What Is Biblical Theology?: An Interview with Jim Hamilton
Between systematic theology, dogmatic theology, historical theology, moral theology, and more, the study of Christian theology can be a bit overwhelming.

Dr. Jim Hamilton (@DrJimHamilton) is professor of Biblical Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (@SBTS) and preaching pastor at Kenwood Baptist Church (@KenwoodBC).
Bible Gateway interviewed Dr. Hamilton about his book, What Is Biblical Theology?: A Guide to the Bible’s Story, Symbolism, and Patterns (Crossway, 2014).

David Murray - 50 Good Reasons to Sleep Longer
In an article headlined The Arrogance of Ignoring Our Need for Sleep leading scientists have warned of the supreme arrogance of trying to do without sufficient sleep.  We are sleeping between one and two hours less per night than people did 60 or so years ago and it’s having a devastating impact upon every part of our lives.

Over the last few months I’ve been collecting research about the dangers of too little sleep, which I’ve summarized below. Once you’ve read that, you’ll probably want to pre-order Adrian Reynolds’ much-needed new book: And So to Bed: A Biblical View of Sleep (might be the best $6 you’ve spent this year!). Also check out 10 Reasons Why We’re Sleeping So Badly.

Great catch!

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