Discussing the Benedict Option

I recently had an hour and a half podcast discussion with Len Pettis on the creeping Romanism that is the Benedict option. One of the more baffling things I have watched the last few months is evangelicals rushing to praise Rod Dreher for his alarmist proclamation that American culture is dead and Christians need to retreat into spiritual safe spaces of what really amounts to M. Night Shyamalan’s, The Village.

We discuss pros and cons, examine the main arguments for the thesis, and offer what I believe to be a more biblical way of thinking through the demise of Western society.

Check out the link here, The Benedict Option.

Talking Halloween and Christians

booAndy Olson of Echo Zoe radio contacted me last week and wondered if I would be willing to visit with him for his monthly podcast. I said, “sure, would love to,” and when we got to exchanging messages about a particular topic, the subject of Halloween came up. We quickly discovered we had similar experiences growing up as Fundy Christians and being told Halloween was satanic and will steal your soul (if you weren’t murdered first in a ritual killing).

So this being October, and knowing Christian parents are probably struggling in their hearts about whether or not they should do something Trick or Treaty with the kids (and at the great risk of receiving a severe wedgie from some of my discernment blogging acquaintances), we landed on that subject. We spent about an hour discussing our take on Halloween. We talk about the Jack Chick Halloween menace worldview, the fact that Halloween marks the beginning of the Reformation, and how folks can actually benefit spiritually from Halloween without losing their soul to the roving covens of black hooded warlocks seeking out blonde virgins to sacrifice.

Give it a listen; and like I always so, listen at 1.5x speed because we sound much more smarterer.

On Halloween

BTWN: The Home School Vs. Public School Episode

homeschoolersI had the privilege once again to join the BTWN fellas to kick around a few topics. First, we discussed what church growth should look like for a congregation. Then we turned to Christian potheads, man. And then we spent the remainder of our time in a spirited discussion about whether or not Christian parents can send their kids to public school. Tim and I took the affirmative, Len the negative.

BTWN: Episode 174

Just to summarize my position regarding the great homeschooling/public school debate if I were not clear enough on the podcast:

– My wife and I currently home school all five of our children. In fact I have written about our views HERE and HERE.

– I do not believe God forbids Christian parents from sending their kids to secular, public schools. There is not a Bible verse anywhere in Scripture that says a parent has to home school.

– The exhortations to train your kids in godliness and so forth, found in Deuteronomy and other similar passages that homeschooling advocates often appeal to for their anti-PS convictions, are not addressing a general education a child would receive in either a public school or at home.

– Instead, passages in Scripture exhorting the teaching of God’s Word to children and raising them up in the fear and admonition of the Lord are speaking specifically to the parents role in raising their children to fear God and to obey His law. Parents can do that while still sending their kids to public school.

– That said, I do share many of the concerns of anti-PS homeschooling advocates. I understand that secular educators and education can have an agenda. Christians must not be naive regarding that fact.

– However, public schools differ from community to community. Some will be more liberal than others, while some extremely conservative than others. My family happens to live in a conservative oriented school district in LA county. Parents need to use discernment and discretion when choosing how they will educate their kids.

– It is grossly inaccurate and a ridiculous exaggeration on the part of anti-PS homeschooling onlyists to automatically charge all public schools and their teachers/administrators everywhere across America as attempting to steal the heart of children from Jesus and to turn them against God.

– Parents who do send their children to public school need to be extra vigilant in what it is their children are learning, who their friends are, who their teachers are, what are the influences, etc.

– The more the parents are involved with their kids education with such things as helping with homework, reviewing assignments and lessons, and even giving of their time at their local school, the more they will be equipped to address issues that may confront their kids and interact with educators and administration.

– Homeschooling is absolutely no guarantee that your children will be safe from worldliness and anti-theistic philosophies, or even that they will be saved. I know a number of loving, God-fearing parents who home schooled their children who never once darkened a PS door, who are now hellions and/or hostile toward their parents and the Christian faith. Anti-homeschooling blogs exist for a reason.

The Prophets of Doom

doomThe last month or so, I have been introduced to the Hardcore History podcast hosted by Dan Carlin.

Now, I am guessing, that originally, these history talks/lessons started out as a general podcast, but as they were produced, Carlin had such an amazingly awesome way of presenting the material, that Amazon’s Audible picked it up and began charging for it. There are only a few that are downloadable for free at this point.

The one I wanted to direct my readers toward is his 4 hour overview of the Munster rebellion in 1534-1535.

The Prophets of Doom

If you recall that incident during the birth of the Reformation, a group of Anabaptist seized the town of Munster, Germany, believing it would be the center of Christ’s return to earth and establishment of his kingdom. That belief was disastrous, and led to the city turning into an ISIS like cultism that saw many of the inhabitants slaughtered by either the hands of the militant fanatic Anabaptist or the armies besieging the city.

Carlin is not a Christian, at least to my knowledge, so he isn’t filtering it through a Reformed theology like a lot of us like with the books of Iain Murray, for instance. However, he does present the history well, explaining the background of the events that formed around the enthusiasm for the general principles of Reformation. That in turn led to Anabaptists gaining power on the town council in Munster, and their eventual take over of the entire city for a year.

I think folks will greatly benefit from his retelling of that bizarre, tragic chapter in the history of the Reformation and the Anabaptist movement. Interestingly, the Munster Anabaptists were continuationists who believed in divine prophecy and other “manifestations of the Spirit” that present day charismatics insist demonstrate the filling of the Holy Spirit.

I would also recommend downloading his other talks. Carlin just has a fantastic ability with walking you through the history of the various events he covers. I understand his lessons on WW1 are excellent.

BTWN Hangout: “I used to be an atheist”

pasta1I recently had the privilege of participating in a Bible Thumping Wingnut Google hangout. There were a variety of topics, but our overarching theme was the knowledge men have of God, apologetic methodology, my recent articles on that topic, and atheism. Larry Herzog gave his testimony about how God saved him from atheism.

We spent the last 30 minutes of the time going Mystery Science Theater on an atheist talk by The Thinking Atheist.

“I used to be an atheist” [You tube version] 

Podcast Discussion on Apologetic Methodology

I had an enjoyable discussion this afternoon with Adam Tucker and Devin Pellew on the subject of apologetic methodology. We discussed a number of topics related to the distinctions between Classic Apologetics and Presuppositionalism.

There were some good exchanges that took place, many of them worthy of independent comment in a blog article or two, which will be forthcoming.

It’s a little theologically geeky, but worth the time listening. Maybe play it at 1.5X speed so we sound really, really smart.

A Dialog on Apologetic Methodologies

Debunking Ancient Aliens

aliensI remember as a kid watching an episode of “In Search Of…” that told about how aliens had visited earth thousands of years ago and helped humans build the pyramids and other ancient monuments. I sat transfixed as Leonard Nimoy’s sober narration convinced this 8 year old that aliens used tractor beams and levitation in order to stack giant rocks.

So recently I am driving to work early one morning and I am listening to the replay of Coast to Coast AM, which is like the equivalent of Charisma News or Sid Roth for atheists, New Agers, and UFO enthusiasts. The guy that was being interviewed had put together a documentary that basically debunked the whole ancient aliens idea, with particular focus on the History Channel series. The weekend host was asking him questions that had a tone of sarcastic disbelief, like, “You’re telling me men can move giant, 800 ton stones? Really?” The interviewee patiently explained how ancient societies accomplished such engineering feats and how ancient alien believers tend to exaggerate or outright fabricate the evidence. In other words, they lie.

The guy being interviewed sounded familiar and when the show went to a commercial break, the host says, “we’ll be back with our guest, Chris White, right after this,” I thought, “Yes, I know where I heard him before.” He was once a guest on Echo Zoe radio during which he talked about identifying the Great Harlot of Revelation 17 and 18.

Knowing the guy was a Christian, I immediately knew I wanted to check out his documentary. It’s available for free on YouTube through White’s main website,

Ancient Aliens Debunked

The video is three hours long, so make sure to pack a lunch; or you can break it up into chapters or sections and return to it when it is convenient.

Now some folks may be wondering why I would recommend a 3 hour YouTube documentary on debunking the claims about ancient aliens. That’s a fantastic question.

Well, if you are like me, I would imagine you have encountered various individuals from internet subcultures that assert with much passion the truth of ancient aliens building the pyramids. Sure, those folks are few, but they are there and they can have an influence on the unlearned.  Additionally, they tend to be really hostile toward God and Christianity specifically, claiming that the aliens that visited the earth were the deities worshiped by the civilizations.

So while it may seem silly to many, I guarantee my readers that they either have come across such people or will eventually. Here you have a fabulous online apologetic resources to answer such absurdities.

Also, the audio of White’s Coast to Coast AM episode is currently available at YouTube,

Chris White Coast to Coast AM interview

That discussion is only an hour and a half or so rather than 3 hours, but you’ll miss seeing all the great visuals. Make sure to fast-forward to around the 40 minute mark where the interview begins.

The only criticism I had with his interview is that he avoided talking about being a Christian. If I hadn’t known of him beforehand, I would have concluded he was just another one of those typical skeptic debunker types. I personally think he missed an opportunity with not making it clear to the audience from where he was coming from as a Bible-believing Christian. He also made the assertion that he thinks aliens can fit into his current worldview and I totally disagree with that, and believe it messes up biblical theology.

Those peripherals aside, I highly encourage folks to check out the documentary when you can. My kids and I watched the first section dealing with ancient monuments and they loved it. It will certainly help to shore up their thinking if and when they encounter friends who believe in ancient alien civilizations.

BTWN Interview on KJV Onlyism

So I had the privilege of being interviewed by the hosts of one of my absolute favorite podcasts, The Bible Thumping Wingnut. We talked about a lot of fun stuff, but focused upon the issue of King James Onlyism.

BTWN Show 124, Fred on KJV Onlyism

We did a Google Hangout, and then it was posted up on You Tube. If you watch the You Tube version, you can see me waving my hands around a lot and hear me tell a funny John MacArthur factoid when Tim’s audio dropped.