As we enter the new year, I am delighted to point readers to one of the Alliance's other websites, Place for Truth, which is overseen by Jonathan Master of Cairn University, and which contains many articles of interest by writers such as David Wells and Michael Haykin. What can one say? Ref21 is to the respectable and polite characters on Place for Truth as the Stones were to the Beatles.
One article which readers may have missed, but which neatly summarizes the significance of recent events in the American evangelical world can be found here. A Roman Catholic friend recently asked me why it is that reformed evangelicals tend to see RC sins as part and parcel of the very essence of the RCC and yet see the failings of their own heroes and institutions as merely anomalous aberrations which have nothing really to do with an otherwise healthy movement. I thought it a very fair and pertinent question, especially given the fact that we now know for certain that the problems in the evangelical world are deeply embedded in the structures and attitudes of the corporate culture which seems to control the movement. As we head into 2014, there is sadly little sign that those who are the public leaders of the reformed evangelical movement in this country actually intend to do much public leading when it comes to the problems that lie at the heart of our corrupt evangelical culture. It is indeed rather grim and more than a little ironic to think that we might actually have something to learn from the pop music industry about how to respond to serious breaches of professional integrity, given the response to one of the more infamous Grammy scandals of yesteryear. In fact, I feel a Ref21 neologism coming on: Millivanillism, n., an established and accepted way in which certain twenty-first century megachurch pastors "write" books and "prepare" sermons. Remember, folks, like 'Evangelical Industrial Complex,' you heard that word here first.
Meanwhile, do not despair. There are still a few oases of incorrigible insubordination and insanity amidst all of the sensible conformity and dutiful deference. Yes, despite the best behind-the-scenes efforts of all the Top Men out there in the Emerald City, the Mortification of Spin has somehow made it into the new year intact. This time, it is a Bully Pulpit; and, with Todd claiming to be 'waiting in a hospital to pray with someone,' it is just myself and the Queen of the Golden Nunchucks discussing Christian approaches to human sexuality in light of recent events.