Thursday, November 30, 2006

Pillsbury Baptist Bible College Defended

Recently we made a post regarding a chapel sermon Pastor Jack Schaap preached in September of 2006 at Hyles-Anderson College. We touched on some troubling things that Pastor Schaap said about Pillsbury Baptist Bible College where he attended before transferring to HAC in the late 70's. Pastor Schaap has also included some of this story in his book entitled, "A Fresh Anointing" on pages 17-30. Sharper Iron picked up on this sermon as well and has an interesting thread in regards to its veracity here.

I had also mentioned that there were some people who actually attended PBBC when these events supposedly transpired. A couple of these men have added their comments to the above thread and you can check them out here, here, and here. Kevin Bauder who is President of Central Baptist Theological Seminary also addressed this particular sermon by Pastor Schaap in his most recent article which you can read here.

It is obvious that Pastor Schaap's predecessor used personal illustrations quite skillfully--most of them were unverifiable and therefore often accepted as true. It seems that Pastor Schaap has used a really exciting personal story that appears to be very easily disputed by those who were present at PBBC 30 years ago. Nowadays preachers who like to tell stories ought to consider that the internet makes verification or disputation of said whoppers very simple.

Is this just a case of different perspectives of the same event? Is it possible that this legend has grown simply because it happened 30 years ago? Is it likewise feasible that Pastor Schaap has embellished and lied only to make Hyles-Anderson appear to be a more superior college than PBBC?

As badly as I would like to comment in more detail here I will wait until some of you have a crack at it after reading the above refutations.

Ephesians 4:25 NKJB "Therefore, putting away lying, 'Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,' for we are members of one another."

PT Barnum

Friday, November 17, 2006

Kindred Hearts

Recently I came across this post at Paleoevangelical--if you have not noticed we link to this site under our "top shelf links" section. Take a look at the excerpt from Doug McLachlan's book, Reclaiming Authentic Fundamentalism. He has some great thoughts on what he refers to as "succeeding miserably". Many pastors and churches in the 60's, 70's, 80's, and even 90's did just that--now it is time to reap what was sown. I noticed he nailed a lot of the themes that we have been harping on here at Bread and Circuses. Here is the portion Ben cites from page 20 of Reclaiming Authentic Fundamentalism:
"For more than a quarter of a century, we have labored under the false assumption that bigness equals greatness and that success can be measured quantitatively. We are much more effective at counting numbers than weighing ideas. This is a form of secularization and an indication that we have bought into the affluence mentality of our day. We seem always to be thinking in terms of numbers, numbers, numbers! How much? How many? How big? This push has led to the disintegration of ethics in reporting statistics and represents a tragic failure to recognize that invisible spiritual growth cannot be accurately gauged by mechanical measuring devices. Moreover, it forms the ground of pragmatism which has invaded so much of Christian ministry. The trouble with pragmatism is that it works: it attracts large crowds. But under its influence, we end up "succeeding miserably" because we are not succeeding Biblically.

In many cases the result has been the development of a philosophy of ministry which revolves around a celebrity focus (the star of the show who attracts the crowd) who functions as a corporate executive manipulating and then discarding his people in his relentless advance toward statistical superiority. All too often, evangelism in this context has been reduced to humanism as the Spirit and the Word are set aside while the Gospel is packaged and marketed almost as though it were a plastic toy."

  • Numbers, numbers, numbers...
  • Salvation = plastic toy to give away...
  • Philosophy of ministry centered around iconic egomaniac...
  • True success in ministry always equated with implementation of pragmatic methodologies...
Does any of this ring any bells? I feel like I have discovered a kindred heart living up in the northernmost parts of Minnesota! After discovering this snippet, I made haste to ebay and found a copy of Reclaiming Authentic Fundamentalism--I should have it within the week and cannot wait to dig in.

I am sure that Dr. McLachlan and I would not agree on every issue facing the current generation of fundamentalism--no doubt I will find out that I am off on some things when I grow older and wiser. I do believe that he has a very keen insight into his own generation and that he has no patience with the outer fringes of what we affectionately call, "Hysterical Fundamentalism". My prayer is that more and more people will begin to utterly reject cultural fundamentalism and embrace a Christ-centered and authentic historic fundamentalism--this is the purpose for our blog.

Take the time and check out the above links--you may even want to bookmark Paleoevangelical and check back regularly to see what is on Ben's mind.

PT Barnum

Monday, November 13, 2006

Get Your Gear Here!

Sorry we have not posted in a while, but things have been very busy around the big top! The animals need our constant care and those who would shut down this circus are doubling their efforts. We have done some shuffling of responsibilities here at Bread and Circuses, but we intend to continue to bring you relevant tidbits--some novel and others very serious.

Here is something I happened upon while checking out the Jack Hyles Web Page. This is a Cafe Press store with nothing but Hyles stuff. Coffee mugs, mouse pads, T-shirts, sweatshirts, and duffel bags! I have a few people in mind who will be on the other end of a wonderful gag gift this Christmas! Enjoy and we will be back with a real post very soon.

God bless!