A remarkable book was released yesterday: The Faith of Christopher Hitchens: The Restless Soul of the World’s Most Notorious Atheist. Samuel James talks us through it.
September 11 may not have been have been Hitchens’s Damascus Road moment, but it did much to disarm his innate hostility to those outside his ideological family tree. By pivoting to the right on terror, Hitchens was forced to doubt the categorical identity politics that so often dominate American discourse. This doubt—this shaken faith in the inherited doctrines of the Left—created the space into which Christian friendship, and Taunton himself, entered.
Reviewing “The Faith of Christopher Hitchens”
Douglas Wilson praises the book as well. “And as far as the eyewitness testimony goes, I can say that his account rings completely true. The man he traveled with and debated is the same man that I traveled with and debated.”
Pastor and author Douglas Wilson recommends P.G. Wodehouse for two reasons:
“Wodehouse was merciless to pretentiousness, and aspiring writers are the most pretentious fellows on the planet. So there’s that spiritual benefit.”
The second reason? “Simply put, Wodehouse is a black belt metaphor ninja. Evelyn Waugh, himself a great writer, once said that Wodehouse was capable of two or three striking metaphors per page.
- He looked like a sheep with a secret sorrow.
- One young man was a great dancer, one who never let his left hip know what his right hip was doing.
- She had just enough brains to make a jaybird fly crooked.
- Her face was shining like the seat of a bus driver’s trousers.
- He had the look of one who had drunk the cup of life and found a dead beetle at the bottom.”
A misguided pastor from North Carolina plans to burn “satanic” books this Halloween, including recent translations of the Bible.
“I believe the King James version is God’s preserved, inspired, inerrant, infallible word of God… for English-speaking people,” the pastor said.
Of the non-biblical books to be burned, they have works by Billy Graham, Rick Warren, John Piper, John MacArthur, Mother Teresa and many others. You can read a list here. (Maybe a Christian bookstore closed recently.)
I guess my impulse is to laugh off such foolishness, but I can’t do it this time. I’m grieved. This man and his congregation are deceived about the nature of God’s holy word in English and the mercy or gracious freedom he gives to his people. I’m even more bothered by his claim to have studied at a Christian college in my town. He says he left because they were too liberal, which is a little funny. Fundamentalists are known by the way they divide up believers and separate themselves from others. The plain meaning of the text is all they need to know God’s will, and by “plain meaning” they mean their interpretation alone. They have gone to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses, and the voice they hear is Jesus’ voice, so how could they misinterpret anything?
I’m not too bothered, of course, because there isn’t anything I can do about it. Still, having heard stories of religious abuse, I can’t laugh when those who appear to be clanging cymbals like this hit the news. I’m not a satirist, I guess–which brings to mind this video of a panel discussion from a Ligonier Ministries conference. Doug Wilson gets into acting like Jesus acted, saying we throw some heavy interpretation into our answers when asking what Jesus would do. We almost never think that Jesus would give a satiric or biting answer, like calling some religious leaders a brood of vipers. Piper, Sproul, and Mohler all comment on that idea.