These are perhaps the most blogged stories over the past few days in the Christian blogosphere. Each is somewhat divisive, and everyone has their own opinion. In no particular order:
Palestine is petitioning the U.N. to create a Palestinian state. President Obama and former president Clinton agree that doing so at this time is a bad idea. Clinton however railed on the Obama White House last week that all the current problems with Israeli relations are the fault of Obama policies. Benjamin Netanyahu describes the U.S. is a friend of Israel, but Obama is in a delicate political position right now. Palestine would need the support of the U.N. Security Council to move forward, and the U.S. has said it will veto the measure if it comes to that. Obama’s political career needs for it to not come to that.
Southern Baptist Convention might seek a new name. Back in the late 80’s an SBC name change was handily defeated. “North American Baptist” was the proposal back in the day, implying a broader base than the South. I once heard an IMB missionary to Canada comment on the irony of planting Southern Baptist churches there. Since slavery is no longer the dividing issue (SBC denounced all historic ties to racism back in 1991) it begs the question of why all American Baptists could not re-unite. The answer is that SBC would never give up their organization, but we MUST beg the question.
Rob Bell is leaving Mars Hill Church. Bell went to the unlikeliest of places and practically did the impossible with Mars Hill. His recent book Love Wins seems to imply universal salvation, and has not been received well (to say the least) by some Christians. He said something about broadening his horizons by leaving, whatever that means. Rick Warren suggests the danger here is that leaders no longer have a community to keep them accountable. Bell could easily support himself without Mars Hill; selling books and DVD’s might be far more profitable than pastoring.
This is not a “Hurray for our side” nor a “He’s not my President” type of rant. There is not anything here you can’t find somewhere else. I’m writing this post for three reasons: 1) I watched the inauguration live 2) I’m a history teacher, and 3) I blog, that’s what I do.
The presidential campaign was historic in and of itself. It was the first time that two current senators ran against each other for the highest office in the land. Of the last 5 presidents, 4 were first state governors. Only the senior President Bush had just served as the V.P. for eight years. We knew that on election night, we would either be choosing the first African American to serve as President ever, or the first woman to fill the role of Vice President. Continue reading →