Monthly Archives: September 2015

POPE AND CASTRO

An important article on how the Pope acted around Castro.

http://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2015/09/when-francis-came-to-cuba

HT: Jesus Creed/Patheos

My brief reflection.  By the way, if you don’t know the meaning of realpolitik, please look it up.  It is a critical word to understand, especially for us Christians:

I will be curious to see whether Scott Hahn, Robert George, Michael Novak, George Weigel, et al. have much to say about this.

The realpolitik of our world seems so wise, but I don’t see the prophets and Jesus imbibing in that approach.

WHAT I READ

My own reading is summarized by the acrostic GROWTH.

G: Greats which the widely recognized classics.  And since you should not just read the greats, but reread them that is happening more as I age.  So a read and then reread of The Taming of the Shrew by Mr. Shakespeare is common .  By the way, I did not start reading Shakespeare until my early forties.  There is hope for anyone!

R: Reviews I need to write or books for upcoming interviews.

O: Other reading that doesn’t neatly fit in the five main categories.  It is only as time permits which is rare!  These kinds of books might find their way on vacation…which has also been rare these past several years.

W: Word of God.  Commentaries and any book which helps me know the Bible better.  And yes, I like to read commentaries cover to cover like real books.

T: Teaching preparation which can be just about anything.

H: History which I am regularly reading.

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PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE!

Democracy in America by the Frenchman, Alexis de Tocqueville is one of my favorite books.  Tocqueville had an acute eye for this budding American experiment in democracy.  In light of the debate tonight, listen to his wisdom and keep in mind he wrote this in the 1830s!:

“A false notion which is clear and precise will always have more power in the world than a true principle that is obscure or involved.”

TELL A STORY, TELL IT WELL!

I am writing some smaller “commentaries” on the Bible.  I recently finished one on Habakkuk titled, God, What on Earth are You Doing?  The following is from my introduction to Genesis:

Telling a story well is powerful.  Telling a powerful story can be life altering.  Even best selling books for the business community[1] know that data alone can be lifeless and so not terribly motivating.  Tell a story worth telling and people’s curiosity is piqued.  Their imaginations are engaged.  They ready for action.  The Bible tells a great story so seek to know and communicate it well.[2]



[1] You see this throughout Kouzes James M. and Barry Z. Posner, The Leadership Challenge 4th Ed. (San Francisco, CA: John Wiley & Sons, 2007).  Also see Tom Morris, The Art of Achievement: Success in Business and in Life (New York, NY: MJF Books, 2002), 19-21.

[2] By the way, too many Christians think they know the story of the Bible well.  They have sat in church for many years and heard “all about Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Mary, and Paul.”  Actually, most only have superficial familiarity with the Bible. 

DALLAS SEMINARY GRADUATES DON’T PREACH THE BIBLE

First, let me say that I know a number of Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) graduates who are careful students of the Bible.  Among the faithful, I have recently been blessed to know Jon Davies, the teaching pastor at Brenham Bible Church.  Jon handles the Word with reverence and diligently applies himself in the study.  Last, and certainly least, is the fact that I myself am a graduate of DTS.  Though I am “agnostic” on certain, secondary doctrines other DTS graduates hold, I remain grateful to God for the indelible impact of both professors and students.

Back to the subject line of this post…That is what I overheard from a theologian who some would say holds to a less than “conservative” position of the Bible.

I was in the bookstore of the seminary where this particular theologian teaches and could not help but eavesdrop on the conversation.  The theologian said to her friend, “I was just on vacation and so we went to the church my in-laws attend.  A Dallas Seminary guy was preaching.  It is amazing how poorly he handled the Scriptures even though he believes in the inerrancy of the Bible.  I don’t believe in inerrancy, but I treat the text of the Bible much more carefully than him.”

Holding to inerrancy is no safeguard against handling the Word of God in a sloppy manner.  Holding to inerrancy also won’t keep you out of bed with another man’s wife as the evangelical landscape makes painfully clear.

Do you hold to inerrancy?  For a few brave souls out there, you may want to declare that you don’t even know what it is, but you have heard it is important!

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MOORE’S LAW OF LEADERSHIP

“As the number of books on leadership skills and strategies increase, the number of available leaders decrease.”

I say this, of course, with my tongue firmly in cheek.  

There is a very serious point that must be made: leaders don’t become that way by reading books on steps and strategies or simple formulas for success.  Leadership can be messy which is not the sort of thing that is easily reducible to cleverly laid out principles.

What is one quality you respect the most in the best leaders you have seen?

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HOW I READ

My own reading is summarized by the acrostic GROWTH.

G: Greats which right now is a reread of The Taming of the Shrew by Mr. Shakespeare.  And I did not start reading Shakespeare until my early forties.  There is hope for anyone!

R: Reviews I need to write or books for upcoming interviews.  I have already read many terrific things for my show, “Moore Engaging,” and will be sharing those in the months ahead.

O: Other reading that doesn’t neatly fit in the five main categories.  It is only as time permits which is rare!  These kinds of books might find their way on vacation…which has also been rare these past several years.

W: Word of God.  Commentaries and any book which helps me know the Bible better.  And yes, I like to read commentaries cover to cover like real books.

T: Teaching preparation which can be just about anything.

H: History which I am regularly reading.

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