First-Year Seminarian Ready To Take Over For Senior Pastor If Necessary

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Lee's picture

Why is the Babylon Bee all of a sudden getting so much press on a site whose tag line is "Thinking is fundamental"?  Yes, there are a few clever blurbs there, but overall it's a bunch of Junior highers playing with a keyboard.

 

Lee

Jim's picture

Lee wrote:

Why is the Babylon Bee all of a sudden getting so much press on a site whose tag line is "Thinking is fundamental"?  Yes, there are a few clever blurbs there, but overall it's a bunch of Junior highers playing with a keyboard.

 

Admin note: We do 1 per week max

Ron Bean's picture

I recently engaged a few college age students on the subject of abortion and presented a modified paraphrase of Jonathan Swift's "A Modest Proposal" (which they had never read) as an alternative. Sometimes good satire is so close to home that its objects fail to see the humor in their foibles.

"Some things are of that nature as to make one's fancy chuckle, while his heart doth ache." John Bunyan

Bert Perry's picture

Lee wrote:

Why is the Babylon Bee all of a sudden getting so much press on a site whose tag line is "Thinking is fundamental"?  Yes, there are a few clever blurbs there, but overall it's a bunch of Junior highers playing with a keyboard.

The answer is simple; sometimes satire forces us to confront who we really are, and hence the "Bee" serves a valuable purpose in showing us who we really are.  For example, unless we married our high school sweethearts, who among us failed to want to return God's gift of singleness that we enjoyed as young pups?  

I would agree that there is a fine line between good satire and sophomoric snark, but my take is that the Bee falls firmly on the side of good satire.  We need to laugh at ourselves from time to time.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

TylerR's picture

Editor

My favorite part of this article is the reference to his "five-page research paper!"

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

Jim's picture

My "seminarian revolt" story (this is all true):

  • My 1st year of seminary at Grand Rapids
  • My wife and I were in a GARBC church just S of the city
  • The church had 3 or 4 seminarians who were members plus several Bible college students
  • This was (and probably still is) a very good church
  • One seminarian and one B/C couple headed up the youth group (I was not involved in this phase of the ministry and only knew the seminarian and his wife (they seemed like reasonable people)
  • Unbeknownst to me the two couples met with the pastor and his wife and demanded certain changes (as I recollect pertaining to preaching style) "or else" (I heard this later from the pastor ... see below)
  • The "or else" was that they would leave the youth group ministry and the church
  • How this was revealed to me: The pastor and his wife invited us to their home. Wow we were thrilled!
  • The pastor was in either in his late 50's or early 60's. In my estimation a very good man. Update. Here's his obit. He was 55 at the time!
  • At their home he came around (after pleasantries) to asking me if knew about or was part of the rebellion
  • We were clueless!
  • The rebels followed through with their threat and left the church in dramatic fashion: They announced their grievances to the youth group and picked up and left the dumbfounded kids
  • It was a major dustup!!! 

So this kind of thing does happen! (I have 2 more stories like this)

Lee's picture

Bert Perry wrote:

...

I would agree that there is a fine line between good satire and sophomoric snark, but my take is that the Bee falls firmly on the side of good satire.  We need to laugh at ourselves from time to time.

If everything is awesome then nothing is awesome.  If everything is extreme then nothing is extreme. If everything is satire then nothing is satire.  You get the picture.

Babylon Bee is fast becoming a more erudite version of "Stuff fundies like" or similar--a more cleverly constructed scoffing, if you please.  Nothing more. 

Lee

Bert Perry's picture

Lee wrote:

 

Bert Perry wrote:

...

I would agree that there is a fine line between good satire and sophomoric snark, but my take is that the Bee falls firmly on the side of good satire.  We need to laugh at ourselves from time to time.

 

If everything is awesome then nothing is awesome.  If everything is extreme then nothing is extreme. If everything is satire then nothing is satire.  You get the picture.

Babylon Bee is fast becoming a more erudite version of "Stuff fundies like" or similar--a more cleverly constructed scoffing, if you please.  Nothing more. 

Lee, I think you're just looking at the surface and not seeing the differences.  For starters, good satire, like the Bee or Swift's "A Modest Proposal", generally involves a touch of exaggeration/fiction--exaggeration which SFL entirely lacks.  It's just news plus bile, really.  SFL has absurdity, to be fair, but the irony and exaggeration that characterize good humor are just not there; think sledgehammer instead of a feather.  It's an entirely different genre.

And really, what is so controversial about the fact that seminarians--really people coming out of ANY college or university--sometimes tend to think that the world ought to be their oyster starting NOW--that they know how it ought to be done and what are these 50-somethings doing getting  in the way?   I was there a bit back, for sure, just like I'd have gladly returned my gift of singleness when I was 22, and just like a missions trip to Hawaii just might have more participants than one to the Congo.  Dear brother, sometimes we just need to lighten up and laugh at our weaknesses, no?

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Jim's picture

My comments:

  • Our Sunday paper has a large comics section. I skip it every week! I do read the letters to the editor section. I've never seen a LTE that complains about the funny pages. I suppose those serious folk just skip it like I do.
  • Doesn't mean that the paper as a whole is not valuable
  • About "the Bee" and satire. I don't read "the Bee" much but occasionally
  • In this case (this filing), using humor / satire makes the point about the dangers of pride of education (which if you've been around long enough you know is a real thing!)
  • Back to the funny pages - remember "the Lockhorns" - in one panel regularly made a comment about marriage
  • Jesus didn't just tell the Pharisees they were false teachers (Matthew 15) ... he used searing, mocking humor: "the blind lead[ing] the blind [leading] into a pit." Makes it a bit more memorable!
  • I know a "Lee", perhaps you know him as well, who runs a Christian camp. I've been to enough Christian camps to know that they use silly skits for a purpose. So "the Bee" uses silliness / satire in the same way
Joel Shaffer's picture

The Babylon Bee is a Satire news site in the same vein as The Onion, only it primarily deals with Christian culture in America.  Some articles are really good satire, while some are mediocre.   I've actually had some good conversations with certain "health and wealth" gospel Christians as a result of the Babylon Bee because its satire cleverly exposed some of the absurdity within that movement.  However, there was one article about Jan Crouch that went too far.  But of course we Christians can use our minds to discern the good from the bad.  Phil. 4:8.     

Jim's picture

Joel Shaffer wrote:
however, there was one article about Jan Crouch that went too far.     

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/06/04/christian-parody-site-catches-hellf...

Sample:

The article’s snark enraged some from the religious community.

"I have been a fan of the Babylon Bee. I have appreciated their sometimes irreverent and stinging satire,”  Barry McCarty, professor of preaching and rhetoric at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, told the Christian Examiner. “I would also say that ordinarily I appreciate wit and satire and I am no fan at all of prosperity gospel and televangelists — but this struck me as being beyond the pale today."

Jim's picture

Lee wrote:

Why is the Babylon Bee all of a sudden getting so much press on a site whose tag line is "Thinking is fundamental"?  Yes, there are a few clever blurbs there, but overall it's a bunch of Junior highers playing with a keyboard.

 

There are probably 35 S/I filings per week and 6 articles. One BB filing per week is hardly "getting so much press "

Greg Long's picture

It's the rare Babylon Bee article (or at least headline) that I don't find hilariously funny.

-------
Greg Long, Ed.D. (SBTS)

Pastor of Adult Ministries
Grace Church, Des Moines, IA

Adjunct Instructor
School of Divinity
Liberty University

Ron Bean's picture

I remember two skits that consisted of exegetical sermons (?) that were delivered with mock enthusiasm.

One was on "Old Mother Hubbard".

I. Who She Was

II. Where She Went

III. Why She Went

IV. What She Found When She Got There

The other was on "The Night Before Christmas". It still makes me laugh.

Sadly, a few "seminarians" were offended that someone had spoofed their craft (?) and went to the Dean with their complaint. Thankfully the Dean had a sense of humor.

"Some things are of that nature as to make one's fancy chuckle, while his heart doth ache." John Bunyan

Lee's picture

Jim wrote:

...

  • I know a "Lee", perhaps you know him as well, who runs a Christian camp. I've been to enough Christian camps to know that they use silly skits for a purpose. So "the Bee" uses silliness / satire in the same way

Emphasis mine

Perhaps I do Smile

The truly outstanding Christian camps adamantly refuse silly skits with a "message"--just sayin'....

 

Lee

Bert Perry's picture

A former pastor of mine once preached "Mary Had a Little Lamb" in hellfire and brimstone fashion, complete with the cup of water and wetness all around the pulpit.  Saith a dear brother of mine about the incident: "That man needs a wife."  Young lady in the area thoughtfully stroked her chin....

(I am not making this up....it was great)

This was at the same retreat where the same pastor roped a friend of mine and I into singing a song in praise of Pepto-Bismol for the entire group.  So we claimed that, sadly, our tenor had hurt his ankle playing broom-ball, we'd heard that there was a young man from Escanaba (our pastor) who could fill in.  

Moral of the story, as it were, is that we're funny, sometimes goofy people, and we should enjoy it.  And I've got my bubbles ordered from Family Christian bookstores for the kids....hope they don't go bankrupt again before it's delivered!

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.