1. What the church can learn from Chick-fil-a.

2. Jeff Keeney of  the “Gospel-Centric Blog” gives the Good, Bad, and the Ugly of contemporary preaching.

Clever and creative way to deal with a serious topic. Me likes: Content before presentation. You got it Jeff.

3. They had me until the poison clause.

4. Mega Church pastor’s salaries.

5. How to name your church.

A practical step-by-step guide.

6. Rush Limbaugh, of all people, calls Obama’s profession of faith a “distortion of Christianity.”

7. Atheists and Mormons are more intelligent about religion than any other group.

Why do you think that is?

8. Olson rants about Calvinism.

In sum: Calvinists are wrong because we believe that God foreordained something evil, but yet we still speak against it.

Interesting, but I don’t see how Olson can be consistent here. What about the cross? Wasn’t it foreordained? Wasn’t it evil? Should the righteous of Christ day have spoken against it.

9. Mark Roberts is finishing up his increadible study on forgiveness by asking the question What if they are not sorry?

In sum: “Yes, you can and should forgive one who has sinned against you, even if that person will not admit the offense. This is consistent with biblical teaching and it is essential for your own well being.”

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    15 replies to "Theology Around the Web in 60 Seconds – 10.02.10"

    • Michael T.

      I have to agree with Paul here. To characterize Olson’s article as a “rant” is a rather poor characterization. It almost amounts to a ad hominem attack. I thought his article was irenic in tone and used a decent analogy. I would picture it being something you might write, albeit from the other side.

    • Dave Z

      RE: item 2 – I agree with the “content before presentation” but found it somewhat ironic that a “gospel-centric” blog mentions law so many times. But then it started to make sense when favorite whipping boy Rick Warren was introduced as the epitome of “the most common kind of worse preaching…” (huh?)

      It’s always a red flag to me when someone stands off to the side and points out everyone else’s problems, how everyone does it wrong, with the implication that the writer, of course, has it right.

      Under ‘Not christian Preaching At All” he writes:

      The preacher’s goal here is “to make people think.” He has forgotten that the goal of Christian preaching is to call sinners to repent and to believe in Jesus. The sermon is designed to make the audience feel as though the preacher has said something profound. People leave deep in thought, and still deep in their sin.

      Isn’t The Theology Program designed “to make people think,” to think through and understand their own beliefs? Isn’t that part of discipleship? Is it true that the only purpose of preaching is “call sinners to repent and to believe in Jesus?” Nothing about encouraging believers or challenging their misconceptions or even teaching? Just calling sinners to repentance?

      Give the guy with the snakes!

    • Dave Z

      I like #9 a lot. I’ve seen a large church demolished because some in leadership held a grudge against others in leadership over various perceived offences. They said “There is no forgiveness without repentance.”

      I guess what makes it OK is to say “they won’t repent” instead of “they’re not sorry.” Makes it sound so much more spiritual.

    • Ed Kratz

      I did not see “rant” as derogatory. Do you guys see it as such. I even have a category about “rants.” I rant about a lot of stuff! I guess it is just the blogger in me. Sorry if it misled you to think that I was saying he was overly polemic.

    • Emily

      Does God forgive us even when we don’t admit we’re wrong?

    • Michael T.


      “Rant” when used to describe someone elses writing or speech typically has a negative connotation of being irrationally over the top (think Howard Dean’s rant back in 2006 that lost him the nomination for President from the Democratic Party).

    • Ed Kratz


      Makes since. However, now that I think it through some…His post is a bit of a rant. 🙂 Though, I do like the guy a lot.

    • Paul Davis


      I like both you and Roger, when I read “Rant”, to me that’s an angry or polemic diatribe. Roger’s post is more about what he sees as circular reasoning from the Calvinist position, quoting about him converting to Rome is fine because he said it, but to me at least “Rant” seemed to harsh.

      *YOU* taught me to be polemic ;), I’m just following through with what I see as a logical conclusion.

      Just pointing out what I saw 🙂


    • bethyada

      Some interesting reads there. About 7. I noted a couple of days ago that the survey separated no religion (functionally atheist) and self identifying atheist, but the former have much lower scores. It may be that there is not a large difference between atheists and Christians.

      That being said, the survey was much easier than I expected and suggests that a large part of the population is ignorant of religious doctrine.

    • Michael T.

      On number 7 I saw a list of all the questions on the Pew site. They are for the most part ridiculously easy. About the only one I wasn’t sure of was the one about Maimonides being Jewish. In general the fact that Americans don’t know these isn’t an indictment of religion so much as it is social studies teachers (history, civics, geography). One should be able to answer at least 2/3 of those questions correct simply by going to a high school with a decent social studies program.

    • Susan

      #9 Mark Robert’s article is excellent! I ended up going back and reading the whole thing. I was just in this situation, of having to go to my pastor, confront, and seek reconciliation. I thought Mark’s point that forgiving is something that one needs to do regardless of the response of the other, but that reconciliation involves confession on the part of the other. That brought some clarity to my reluctance r.e. my pastor’s response to me. He quickly asked me to forgive him, without confessing to anything. As I see it, asking for forgiveness isn’t necessarily an admission of guilt. It can be, but isn’t always. And I think that we are to confess (as scripture says) but the Bible never tells us to ‘ask for forgiveness’…that can be a quick way to shift the onus to the one whom you have wronged….without expressing any contrition (at least, that’s what happened to me). But….Mark didn’t discuss that in his article.

    • Michael T.


      You know thinking on Roger Olson’s post I think me might be onto something in this sense. How can something God has ordained be intrinsically evil without God being less the wholly good?? I think one has to conclude that either the thing isn’t truly evil and it is simply our perception that said thing is evil (in which case evil doesn’t truly exist) or God isn’t wholly good.

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