Pride

Fundamentally Proud

Fundamentalism is a worthy cause. From its inception, it has endeavored to take a strong and clear stand on traditional Christianity. Beale defines a true fundamentalist as “one who desires to reach out in love and compassion to people, believes and defends the whole Bible as the absolute, inerrant, and authoritative Word of God, and stands committed to the doctrine and practice of holiness” (Beale 3). Fundamentalists take a literal approach to the Word of God. They are careful not to read any personal bias or opinion into the Bible. Recognizing that the heart is deceitful above all things, they understand the danger of allowing the feelings and knowledge of man to wield authority over the Scriptures. God’s truth weakened by man’s control ceases to be God’s truth.

It is for this reason the fundamentalist resists the liberal mindset so militantly. Liberal Christian thought seeks to marry theology to the corrupt humanistic thinking of the day. Colossians 2:8 strictly warns of the danger of being “spoiled through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” Oil and water do not mix. The liberal theological attempt to mix the life-giving water of the Word with the slippery oil of the world has robbed mankind of the pure doctrine of the Scriptures that are able to save men’s souls. It has always been, and must continue to be, the mission of the fundamentalist to expose such error and guide men back to the authoritative Word of God.

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Knowledge, Humility, Zeal, and Leadership

Note: This article was originally published at SI on October 2, 2006.
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I really love Peter. It is so easy for us, in retrospect, to snipe at him for his antics, but I have been thinking a lot about him lately. Peter strikes me as a man who had given himself over entirely to follow Jesus. He rightly vested in Christ all of his hopes and dreams. So much so pryde_direction.jpgthat when asked if he were going to leave Jesus, he responded, “Where else can we go? You have the words of life.” Peter was exactly right; Jesus is the only way to life. All other paths are leading directly to sin and death.

Yet much of Peter’s ideas of discipleship were colored by his own misguided expectations and misunderstandings. Jesus had a habit of turning those expectations upside down, and we frequently find Peter struggling to reconcile what Jesus was doing and teaching with his own preconceived notions of the way things were supposed to be.

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Knowledge, Humility, Zeal, and Leadership

I really love Peter. It is so easy for us, in retrospect, to snipe at him for his antics, but I have been thinking a lot about him lately. Peter strikes me as a man who had given himself over entirely to follow Jesus. He rightly vested in Christ all of his hopes and dreams. So much so that when asked if he were going to leave Jesus, he responded, “Where else can we go? You have the words of life.” Peter was exactly right; Jesus is the only way to life. All other paths are leading directly to sin and death.

Yet much of Peter’s ideas of discipleship were colored by his own misguided expectations and misunderstandings. Jesus had a habit of turning those expectations upside down, and we frequently find Peter struggling to reconcile what Jesus was doing and teaching with his own preconceived notions of the way things were supposed to be.

In John 13, we see this misunderstanding clearly demonstrated. Jesus stooped to the level of a servant and approached Peter to wash his feet. Peter immediately (and somewhat impulsively, I think) responded that this wasn’t right. According to all he understood, the rabbis, teachers, and great people of his day didn’t ever do such things. It was unbecoming of their status and position, and Jesus was even greater than these. In Peter’s eyes, this request was an affront to the accepted order of things.

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“Miss Judgment’s” Misjudgment

I peered out the window as I heard a van pull up outside. I was curious about the other couples who were attending the Christian family conference over the weekend. As a woman emerged from a gray van, I gasped. “Honey,” I called to my husband who was putting away some of his things, “You won’t believe this woman outside! Her hair is buzzed, and she has a bald stripe shaved on the top of her head!” I kept looking out the window, wondering what kind of Christian woman would have a hairstyle like that. I imagined she was probably a feminist…or maybe a punk rocker. Either way, I knew I wouldn’t be making friends with her over the weekend. I let my eyes wander around the parking lot of the resort. I saw a kind-looking woman with long, curly red hair and another nice-looking person with shoulder-length blonde hair. I suspected I’d be making friends with some of the nicer-looking ladies I saw meandering around the premises. I couldn’t imagine how the bald-stripe woman fit into this conservative-looking group of people.

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Fat Cats

Missourians, stand up and be proud. According to a news release on March 24th, your state may possibly be housing the largest domestic cat in the world. Weighing in at 50 pounds, Iggy boasts a 33-inch waist and consumes 30 pounds of food a week. Although that represents a lot of clumpy litter, the $10,000 that Iggy is looking to win from “Funniest Home Videos” just might deliver him some forgiveness.

I’ve been mulling over in my mind whether our own family cat could procure any kind of cash reward. We acquired Cougar four years ago when several undercover PETA sympathizers, otherwise known as students, were discovered harboring a stray kitten in their campus residence. After receiving the “he goes or you go” ultimatum, the animal lovers skillfully exercised their collegiate gift of sidestepping trouble and pawned the little kitty onto a couple of unsuspecting, completely delighted kids. I recall distinctly not wanting another family pet, but when your toothless wonder of a daughter, along with her supportive big brother, eagerly presents you with a gift that is given by students desiring to do nothing other than to “express their sincere love and appreciation,” you accept it; and then you claim a renewed resolve not to ever be manipulated again. At least not for the next 24 hours.

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