Letters With Light Feet

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Safeguards

Good stuff! You might enjoy Andrew McCarthy’s podcast. You might also enjoy Dan Bongino’s. He’s an ex-Secret Service agent and an ex-NYC cop, which gives him a unique perspective on current events. He’s been way out ahead on all he spy-gate stuff.

Rob

Rob, thank you.

Ploductivity

Dear Doug,

Are you planning on making an audio version of your book about work?

Dave

Dave, yes. It is in the works, but no release date yet.

Amazon Prime

So what does a guy and his wife do when they get hooked by the trailer for Man Rampant, but they live in Australia? Amazon Prime won’t let us purchase outside of the United States. Any reason you discriminate against my hard earned Australian dollars?

Peter

Peter, very sorry about that restriction. But it is Amazon’s restriction, not ours. With regard to the other things we have posted (e.g. Reformed Basics), we have overcome that licensing obstacle by posting them on our church web site in addition to Amazon Prime (christkirk.com).

Protestant Stuff

Thank you for your ministry. I have been interacting with your videos on the possibility of Catholics being saved, and I think I am viewing the subject similarly to you. But does Galatians teach that the “false Gospel” of Rome would damn them? Specifically, how do you understand why the error of Rome is different from the error described in Galatians? If you have written any material on this, I would love to read/buy it. Thank you so much!

Michael

Michael, the thing we have to distinguish is false teaching and false brothers. A false brother is lost, by definition. A true brother can get tangled up by false brothers, and need to have someone like Paul write them a stern letter. I believe that false systems of doctrine do not necessitate the damnation of those entangled in them. But those people are saved in spite of the system, not because of it.

“His besetting sin was refusal to be accountable, and by sheer effort of will he managed to make his besetting sin into his supreme virtue. And no one is ever going to tell him differently.”

This is an excellent description of John Calvin and the other reformers. And why I converted to Eastern Orthodox.

I recommend Fr Josiah Trenham’s book Rock and Sand.

Russell

Russell, very sorry to hear that. But the perceived hypocrisy of others is a very poor reason to convert to anything.

Fifty Ways

Your imaginary pastor is going to be meeting a lot more like Jon. The emerging ethos among many of the young will take a rejection of accountability much, much farther than this. Many have noses like bomb-sniffing dogs, and they can detect the faintest whiff of obligation, duty, or responsibility, and they’ll alert on it and start barking. I’m running into young adults who won’t enter any kind of human relationship in which they are obliged to do anything, especially if it’s on a long term basis. This is one of the engines driving the so-called “gig economy” comprised of short term jobs and no long term commitments. And this explains sexual hookups in place of marriage, radical dishonor of parents, a revulsion against the notion of having children, or even simple things like buying a house — because they will be responsible for their own taxes and repairs. It will be flat-out impossible to build a church with these folks without a conversion experience in which commitment aversion is one of the sins they’re consciously repenting of.

Steve

Steve, yes, exactly.

So far, just about every one of these Fifty Ways articles has brought specific people or situations to mind. At times its as if you’ve had a spy at our church…which is unlikely.

Andrew

Andrew, yes. But this is because people sin in predictable patterns.

Praying and the Trinity

In relation to your article “A Thumbnail Statement on the Trinity”, I understand the way you’ve respectfully laid out the ranking of positions within the Godhead of all three persons. What I have pondered is since listening to your sermon of “How to Worship Jesus Christ” I get a sort of vibe that the idea of praying to or worshiping any other person of the Trinity for a time is perhaps wrong. I don’t want to outright say that you were claiming outright that it is, but I did walk away from that sermon somehow concerned about times where I did admire the road to the Father (Jesus) since he is God, or asking the car (the Spirit) to keep me traveling safely since is God equally to the other two persons as well. I suppose I just found it important to hear from you on these things since it feels like if it hasn’t always just been the Father that I pray to that I am bordering on idolatry. I think of Thomas falling down before Jesus proclaiming “My Lord and my God”.

Daniel

Daniel, I think the normative biblical pattern is to pray to the Father, in the name of Jesus, in the power of the Spirit. But I also believe that it is fully appropriate to occasionally address the Son and the Spirit in prayer. Another example would be Stephen saying “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”

Housekeeping

Your little book quotes and other non-article posts are no longer appearing on the main “recent posts” web page on my mobile (iOS), but they do appear when using the prev/next buttons at the bottom of posts. Configuration issue?

Andrew

Andrew, yes, but a deliberate configuration issue. The full blog, as it used to appear, is now on the second page, with the most recent main articles appearing on the front page.

Good Old Huey

I just wanted to thank you for quoting Huey Long. I have an autographed edition of T. Harry Williams’s great biography of him, and several essays and term papers about the Kingfish are a big part of the reason I made it through high school and undergrad, although I rarely see him cited these days.

Bernard

Bernard, you are most welcome. Least I could do.

Sounds FV

You were called out by name, basically as a heretic on the Aquila Report. It was in reference to FV. I am late to the game in all this and what I’ve read on FV is somewhat confusing, sort of like the crowd led by Sosthenes.

Here’s what it said: Moreover, the FV will be over when legalism is over. Until then, legalism will periodically repackage itself while retaining the two cornerstones of their position—salvation by ceremonies (circumcision, baptism, etc.) and salvation by moral works (keeping the commandments in order to earn salvation). Whenever people express either or both of these views, they are teaching legalism.

I’ve read your post on ‘FV No Mas’. Why are people not convinced?

I was also surprised to see an old article by Rachel Miller still the top 50 of 2019. I looked up your response and read it.

There seems to be such a visceral response to what you have to say. Unless I am blind, deluded and lack any discernment I cannot figure out why.

Jeff

Jeff, I think it is because an error on justification would be very serious, and it is also very easy to allege, and it has worked for them so far.

A Theology of Attraction

There are two gentlemen who are slowly gaining prominence for their articulation of the doctrine of patriarchy, Michael Foster and Bnonn Tennant. I was going to recommend them to you as guests for the next Man Rampant season, but it appears worlds have already collided. In their latest newsletter they mentioned they are in talks for a book being published by Canon Press.

I would love to hear your interactions with them on some of their stronger unconventional ideas of gender piety. Their podcast episode on “a theology of attraction” was some of the most interesting content I encountered last year. Really eye-opening stuff taken straight from Genesis. Link shared here for all to encounter their work.

Rope

Rope, thanks.

Parenting Presbyterians

I’m a Reformed Baptist kind of fellow in a Southern Baptist church. However, boy you Presbyterians write some great stuff on parenting.

My wife and I are about halfway through our first pregnancy, and I’m trying to devour as many good parenting books as I can, including and especially 6 by you and Nancy. I quickly found out two things: I had no idea what being a father is, and you do, praise the Lord.

I write to you asking for a clarification. How does a wise man resolve the seeming tension in the responsibility of a father and mother to “fill the tanks” of their children, boys by respect and girls by love, while acknowledging that that should eventually primarily come from Christ?

Or to apply it another way, should a husband rely primarily on his wife for feeling respected, or primarily on Christ? If he finds himself craving it, where should he go?

Ross

Ross, in all such relationships, you have to think of Christ as the source. But Christ ministers His grace to us directly (through the Spirit) and through created instruments (family, friends, etc.). When your wife respects you, and this edifies you, that is not a Christless event.

Prognostication

Ruh-roh! The Donald is in trouble now. Being picked as a political winner by Doug is about as big a curse as being featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

DC

DC, ah, but careful now Before the actual event, let me just say that I was very careful not to pick a winner. The most I am saying right now is that a second term for Trump is a distinct possibility. Which is why some people need to be emotionally braced.

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Jane
Member

I’m glad to see the Fifty Ways articles starting to get feedback. So far, in every one of them, I’ve seen a combination of, “I think I know that guy” and “I can see how I might become that guy if I’m not careful.” And maybe a bit of, “Oops, I was that guy at one point.” But I’m a little uncomfortable with Steve’s slam on the gig economy. It seems to me the gig economy more nearly resembles how humans have historically functioned economically most of the time, than the “get a job, expect to keep it indefinitely, expect… Read more »

Wisdumb
Guest
Wisdumb

I agree. The Gig economy would most likely lead to greater commitment, because it requires better management skills and is closer to employer than emploee.

JP Stewart
Member

Yep, and it’s more likely someone can be lazy working for a single employer than if every job they do is subject to review on Google, FB, Upwork, Yelp, etc. for the world to see.

Farinata
Guest
Farinata

Isn’t there a significant difference between the gig economy that you seem to be describing – the village carpenter who is an independent businessman – and the modern situation where, say, Uber employees seem to be more or less at the mercy of management?

Jeff
Guest

They are entering into a voluntary arrangement. If it is unsatisfactory it is as easy as turning the app off. You’re done.

Mike M.
Guest
Mike M.

Consider the kind of work/employment Jesus is assuming in the parable found in Matt 20:1-16. It’s literally a one-day deal, work in the vineyard today for this price.

Similarly, the requirement not to keep a hired man’s wages until morning in Lev 19:13 would seem to fit most closely with a day-to-day hiring arrangement.

Jane
Member

Mike M., those are exactly the kinds of things I had in mind. Even within the last century, the common language for talking about employment was “work,” “out of work,” and “looking for work.” Only in the last few generations has the language completely shifted to “jobs.” I think that’s indicative of a shift in mentality. People used to think in terms of doing work and being paid, however that happened. Now the focus is all on jobs. There is absolutely nothing wrong with stable, long-term employment in a specific “job”, but I need some convincing that it’s inherently morally… Read more »

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

Jane It seems to me it would really come down to motive and consequences. Why does one prefer gig economy over holding down a job? I suppose my choice of idiom – a job is something one “holds down” – indicates something of the way I think about it – indicative of my bias maybe. There are men who will….do stuff, for money, honest things I mean, and sometimes it involves a plan, however they’ll do anything but just get a steady job working for someone, for a steady paycheck. Why? As for consequences, does the gig approach work? Does… Read more »

Farinata
Guest
Farinata

But isn’t it also true that the sort of people who stood around waiting for someone to hire them each day were not doing very well, economically? Presumably, none of them owned land of his own, or he would have been harvesting his own crops. One may be able to work in such a manner and be an honest man, but it’s hardly a good thing! And if a significant portion of your working class is in that position – standing around waiting for someone to throw them a day’s work, and uncertain if they’ll have a day’s work tomorrow… Read more »

Jane
Member

The question of whether it is a mark of an a more economically sound society or not is a different one, though. While I agree with the value of stability, I think it is a stretch to look at the gig economy and say, “See how irresponsible people are? We have a gig economy” which is the sense I got from Steve’s words. My point is not to defend every aspect of the gig economy or every motive someone might have for participating in it, but to question whether a gig economy is great for lazy people and only great… Read more »

DCL
Guest
DCL

“Which is why some people need to be emotionally braced.”

Indeed. The meltdowns we saw the night of the election 2016 were just the appetizer. This time, someone may actually really leave the country. For real. Maybe. I mean…it could happen.

😁😁😁 😎

Bj
Guest
Bj

Enjoyed the man rampant with Arron renn. Tried to find his masculinity newsletter but it said he discontinued it. Any idea why or what’s up?