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Technology
A revolution is taking place, one profile at a time. Online social networks like Facebook and MySpace are connecting people like never before. With hundreds of millions of users, they’re creating almost limitless potential to redefine our personal worlds. It’s a movement that’s changing how we form relationships, perceive others, and shape our identity. In his new book, The Church of Facebook (David C Cook, October 2009) author Jesse Rice takes a deeper look at the movement which, at its core, reflects our need for community. “Our longing for intimacy, connection, and a place to belong has never been a secret, but social networking offers us a new perspective on the way we engage our community,” Rice states. This new perspective raises new questions: How do these networks impact our relationships? In what ways are they shaping the way we think of ourselves? And how might this phenomenon subtly reflect a God who longs to connect with each one of us? The Church of Facebook explores these ideas and much more, offering a revealing look at the wildly popular world of online social networking. “The new landscape of social networking tells us two basic things: One, we have a deep desire to be known. And, two, we are faced with a technology that both enables and hinders the intimacy we’re looking for,” Rice says. From personal profiles to status updates, author Jesse Rice takes a thoroughly entertaining and insightful look into what Facebook reveals about us, and what it may mean for the future of “community.” Social networking is no fad; it has become a fact of life, especially for teens and twenty-somethings. The Church of Facebook is essential reading for parents and pastors who want to understand this trend and its impact on their children and congregations. Rice’s discussions will engage social networkers of all ages and stages who are wrestling with the very real issues of identity, meaning, purpose, and friendship within the context of virtual communities. Read more here…
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Uncategorized
I saw a small announcement on the Mars Hill website, but saw nothing on Shane’s current church website.  The discernment ministries websites are all abuzz over this move; but it seems that no one else either 1.  cares; 2.  knows about it; or 3. cares. I don’t know much about Shane.  I’ve read most of his recent book “Flickering Pixels” and, for the most part, enjoyed it.  Shane (and Rob, for that matter) were both speakers at Catalyst this year… but I didn’t get to hear either of them speak. Here’s my guess… Reasons #1 and #3 above are accurate.  I don’t know of many that really follow much of what Rob Bell is doing these days.  Most think he’s a brilliant teacher, but are a little uncomfortable with some of his recent teaching.  Plus, Bell kind of separates himself from many of the other church leaders.  While many are open and very public figures, Bell has chosen to become more secluded.  He keeps to himself and does his own thing. What do you think?  Is the addition of Shane Hipps to the position of Mars Hill teaching pastor a big thing?  Does it have any ramifications for the church at large?  Or do you simply not care one way or another? Just wondering… Todd
20

Controversy
It was supposed to be a big debate on Baptists and Calvinists.  Well, it never happened.  Now, three years later, it has all come down to blocking on Twitter… According to Examiner.com: Today marks the three year anniversary of a historical debate that was supposed to take place between Dr. Ergun Caner and Dr. James R. White on “Baptists and Calvinists.” The irony is that on this very same day, October 16th, 2009, Dr. Caner blocked Dr. White from following him on twitter. Some Christians are left asking, can’t a Southern Baptist get along with a Reformed Baptist? What’s the story behind the Caner/White conflict? As always, history tells the story. The conflict between Dr. Caner, the President of Liberty Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, VA, and the director of Alpha and Omega Ministries Dr. James R. White goes as far back as April 2006 (although perhaps to even 2005, see page 23). Dr. Caner preached a very strong anti-Calvinist sermon at Liberty that left many students (and theologians across the board) in shock. In the sermon, Caner redefined what was historically known as “hyper-Calvinism,” and introduced a host of common misrepresentations regarding historical “5-point Calvinism.” Dr. White reviewed the sermon several times on his webcast The Dividing Line (also on youtube here) to document these errors. At one point, Dr. Caner made an even more radical assertion, saying that “Calvinists are worse than Muslims.” Caner has not retracted this statement, nor will Caner publicly refer to White as a Christian. The conflict finally culminated into the planned debate: Monday, October 16th, 2006, 6pm, at the New Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. A debate on Calvinism. The debate was jointly agreed upon between James White and Tom Ascol (favoring Calvinism) and Dr. Ergun Caner and his brother Emir (critiquing Calvinism). Ironing out the details, however, was another matter. The four exchanged a series of letters regarding the topic, format, and setting of the debate. Words were exchanged between the moderator, Dr. Bret O’ Donnell, and White before things got further off the tracks: Click here to read the ‘blow by blow’ history of why this debate never happened; and how petty both sides can become… And click here to read James White’s latest shot to reignite this firestorm. Whatever will we do?  We will never know who would have won the debate!  How shall we think? Actually, I think neither won this debate.  In fact… they both lost it. (Oh great… there’s two more people who will block me on Twitter.) Todd
Today marks the three year anniversary of a historical debate that was supposed to take place between Dr. Ergun Caner and Dr. James R. White on “Baptists and Calvinists.” The irony is that on this very same day, October 16th, 2009, Dr. Caner blocked Dr. White from following him on twitter. Some Christians are left asking, can’t a Southern Baptist get along with a Reformed Baptist? What’s the story behind the Caner/White conflict? As always, history tells the story. The conflict between Dr. Caner, the President of Liberty Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, VA, and the director of Alpha and Omega Ministries Dr. James R. White goes as far back as April 2006 (although perhaps to even 2005, see page 23). Dr. Caner preached a very strong anti-Calvinist sermon at Liberty that left many students (and theologians across the board) in shock. In the sermon, Caner redefined what was historically known as “hyper-Calvinism,” and introduced a host of common misrepresentations regarding historical “5-point Calvinism.” Dr. White reviewed the sermon several times on his webcast The Dividing Line (also on youtube here) to document these errors. At one point, Dr. Caner made an even more radical assertion, saying that “Calvinists are worse than Muslims.” Caner has not retracted this statement, nor will Caner publicly refer to White as a Christian. The conflict finally culminated into the planned debate: Monday, October 16th, 2006, 6pm, at the New Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. A debate on Calvinism. The debate was jointly agreed upon between James White and Tom Ascol (favoring Calvinism) and Dr. Ergun Caner and his brother Emir (critiquing Calvinism). Ironing out the details, however, was another matter. The four exchanged a series of letters regarding the topic, format, and setting of the debate. Words were exchanged between the moderator, Dr. Bret O’ Donnell, and White before things got further off the tracks:
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