Thisby Thestoop and the Black Mountain

It’s fair to say that I read a good number of books children’s books. Having kids of my own, I like to pilfer their shelves from time to time. In our house, we like to stock “the classics” as a sort of quality guarantee. Since children’s books became a genre there have been writers who have tried to cash in on the children’s market as a way to make a quick buck with little effort. Reading “the classics” means that you get the best books from every era without having to wade through the formulaic twaddle, most of which has mercifully been forgotten over the years.
It’s a different story with modern children’s books. Picking up a new children’s book means taking a chance on wasting your time, and the modern children’s book publishing machine loves tried and true formulas. After the success of Harry Potter we got books about schools for magical/mythological/specially talented kids who are sorted into groups based on their personalities. After The Hunger Games took off, we’ve have had m…

The Fruit of Bitterness

In much of what Frank Schaeffer writes these days, one can see the bitter, little boy Franky peeking out from behind the curtain. It reminds me of many of C. S. Lewis's characters from the Great Divorce and the Screwtape Letters, as well as a bit of Eustace from Dawn Treader. From the root of bitterness toward his father, Francis Schaeffer, grew a bitterness toward his father's ministry, his father's politics, his father's theology, and now finally his father's God. Here is one of Frank's latest, and it incidentally demonstrates the very issue that my last post on Dante dealt with.


Anonymous said…
Rick, listen to the music, not the song. He is cutting at the mindlessness of committment with which evangelicals approach the Bible. He is not attacking the Bible outright.

He is attacking the hermenutics and the inconsistency with which evangelicals tend to apply the Bible.

If we were to consistently apply the Bible itself, alone, then Christians would be a lot more violent than we are.

However, we have the Holy Spirit in the life of the Church (Tradition) to tell us the correct hermenutic.

You will say then that undercuts the authority of the Bible. Yes it does undercut the authority of the Bible, but not God.

God is living, speaking to us in and through the Church. He uses the Bible, but the also uses the Church as a whole speaking to us thru Icons, Song, and Liturgy. He even God forbid, uses nature to speak to us.

As to the guidance and the certainty of rationalism, it goes out the window when you meet with faith. It doesn't mean that we cease to use our reason, we just don't make it the center of our lives. We make God the center.
Rick said…
I have to disagree here. (And not only that the music can't be divorced from the song any more than words can be divorced from meaning.)

Twenty years ago this critique by Frank Schaeffer may have been against fundamentalist interpretations of Scripture, but he specifically attacks Scripture itself. He believes that the law code of the Old Testament, written by God Himself, is brutal and wicked. Frank is perhaps still Orthodox in name, but in practice he admits to only occasionally attending services. In addition he writes like an agnostic, is fully supportive of the gay rights movement, and has moved toward a pro-choice stance on abortion.

He believes that the Bible is not the word of God, and that Christians (of any tradition) should not think the Bible above criticism.

In short he may not be completely beyond the pale of Orthodoxy, but if I were Eastern Orthodox, I certainly wouldn't want him to be my spokesman.