A Brief History of 20th Century Evangelism Activities: Personal Soul-Winning Tools: The American Tract Society: At the turn of the 19th century, short gospel tracts were being distributed for a quick readable presentation of the gospel. In Boston and New York City, societies were established for the printing of gospel tracts. The two organizations merged … More Too Earthly Minded to be any Heavenly Good – Part 4c (evangelism techniques)
A Brief (and extremely incomplete) History of Major American Evangelism Influencers: Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758): Although the 20th century influences on Evangelism are the primary focus of this section, one cannot avoid the American Great Awakenings as fundamental influences in the development of American Evangelical evangelistic praxis. The Mathers, the Williams, and the Stoddards are just a … More Too Earthly Minded to be any Heavenly Good – Part 4b (influential personalities)
This section in the ongoing study series is extremely long, and will be broken into three or four parts. The topic of evangelism is fundamental to the understanding of Evangelicalism, and this multi-part topic is evidence of this fact. In this part of the series, I look at the history of evangelism theology and praxis … More Too Earthly Minded to be any Heavenly Good – Part 4a (some popular theologies informing evangelism)
On the verge of moving to the UK (you know, that place which the more famous country of Wales is a part of) ;-), I am back in Salem for another Halloween. I’ve been involved with events in Salem’s monthlong Halloween since 1999, which makes me sound like a tagline on a company motto. Needless … More Another October in Salem – is it the last?
Anyone following my blog posts will discover soon that I am a fan of the Russian philosopher Mikhail Bakhtin, and his theory that Carnival (in the medieval street carnival sense) inherently carries revolutionary impetus. The idea is that there is a “world upside down” message to the carnival. It is like Mardi Gras, with local … More Carnivalesque Economics and Game Stop
The Ravi Zacharias revelations, which are by no means new, bring up a topic I discussed earlier this week. I talked with Benjamin Wheeler, Megan Ann Jones Ady, and Kyle Henderson about the problems with the lack of an appropriate apology from the sexual abuse situations at the Willow Creek church and Bill Hybels. The … More Are the Ravi Zacharias Allegations part of a Continuing Story of Evangelical Cover-up?
A Note to the All the Grinches Out There: Where you are meant to be, and where you are, may not be the same place, and that’s okay. If someone tells me that I am where I am supposed to be one more time, I just might punch them. Yes, I am where I should … More Do Not Read This––Unless You Are a Grinch This Christmas
As I continue to study American Evangelical theologies and praxes, I have now moved into the category of evangelism. I have been a bit surprised to discover that an historical outline of the variety of techniques and practices of evangelism in the 20th century does not appear to be out there in the web world … More Looking at Evangelistic Practices and their connection to Evangelical Politics
Ecstasy as Personal and Performative Spirituality – Defining Terms ec·stat·ic /ekˈstadik,ikˈstadik/ feeling or expressing overwhelming happiness or joyful excitement. involving an experience of mystic self-transcendence. per·for·ma·tive /pərˈfôrmədiv/ adjective relating to or of the nature of dramatic or artistic performance. In this third part on looking into how the theology and praxis of American Evangelicals informs … More Too Earthly Minded to be any Heavenly Good (Part 3 – The Ecstatic)
In the first part of this series, I told the story of my own history and tension with the subjects of Christian eschatology and evangelism. I am passionate about the gospel, both in its power of personal transformation and social benefit, and I became a Christian in the late stages of an evangelical apocalyptic frenzy. … More Too Earthly Minded to be any Heavenly Good (Part 2 – End Times Theologies)
Note: I have placed a number of links to descriptions of the terminology in the first couple paragraphs just in case this terminology is new to you. Sorry for getting nerdy so quickly in this post. Don’t feel too compelled to understand the intricacies perfectly. I began walking this Christian path in 1980. It was … More Too Earthly Minded to be Any Heavenly Good, Part 1
Recently, I ran a series of Facebook posts asking people to respond to a statement by Donald Trump that, “most religious leaders loved” his visit to Saint John’s Episcopal Church near the White House with it’s Bible propped photo op. The moment was shrouded in controversy, if not a bit of tear gas, as the … More How Witches and Atheists Defended My Christian Faith Against Political Corruption
We have half the nation suffering with TDS (Trump Derangement Syndrome) it appears. It many ways it does not look significantly different that PTSD. People have similar responses of fear in face of otherwise mundane events, inability to navigate basic social situations, depression, mood swings, and uncontrollable angry outbursts. This was not difficult to predict. … More We’re Getting Frontal Lobotomies: Trump and trauma through false proximity
I have a strange practice for following the news. I dodge right and then left, and bounce back and forth between differing opinions. Lately I feel like I am playing dodgeball while reading the daily news. Dodge right, dodge left, duck and dive: Like playing dodgeball, there’s no place to run for cover without stepping … More I See Two Americas, and I Don’t Like Either One
Listening to the Book of Esther I came across this: “And when Haman saw that Mordecai bowed not, nor did him reverence, then Haman was full of wrath.” (Esther 3:5) There are people who demand that they receive deep respect, whether it is deserved or not. I have met pastors like this, and I have … More Violence, Hubris, and the Wisdom of Esther