February 8, 2008
People, Prospects, and Pundits
Greetings and salutations one & all.
I just returned from the road and want to inform you of some up and coming interviews; dates to be announced.
Charles (Chuck) Colson, former “hatchet man” for President Richard Nixon and founder of Prison Fellowship, has written a new book, The Faith Given Once, for All. A gutsy interview that speaks about many of the issues of our time and the kind of faith that is being practiced and not practiced here in the West; as a result many are ill-equipped to deal with the challenges that face us.
Dion DiMucci, the original “doo wop” Wanderer, who was responsible for many, many, hit records including the aforementioned, and Teenager in Love, Where or When, Runaround Sue, Abraham, Martin & John, Ruby Baby; and that is only some of them. My wife Nedra and I had a role in Dion’s spiritual journey, and here he talks and sings about some of those experiences.
Another singer/performer from back then, Tony Orlando. Along with hit records, Halfway to Paradise, Knock Three Times, and Tie a Yellow Ribbon ‘Round the Ole Oak Tree and host of his own TV show with two ladies known as Dawn. Again another amazing life journey.
And talking about journeys, recently I was going through some personal papers and came upon some of my father’s ministry notes; the following was written circa 1935. It is not the kind of “pop Christianity” that would sell a lot of books in today’s world:
“I am not going to deceive you; I want to tell you the truth. In all the universe there is none who invades lives like Jesus Christ. During the past 2000 years, I do not know how many people have had their prospects shattered by Him. If I were to tell you what splendid prospects you have as Christians I should be misleading you. Let me tell you rather – Jesus of Nazareth wrecks the lives of all those who follow Him. Do not misunderstand me when I say to every one of you, there is no place for natural ambition for anyone whose life has really been handed over to God. No future in the non-Christian world and no future in the Christian world. DARE YOU GO THIS WAY??”
My father and mother took this seriously all those years ago in Scotland and uprooted our family to follow Jesus to America.
Finally, a thought that all the political pundits, prognosticators, and so called prophets (profits?) can kick around:
“Will Hillary wear a pantsuit or dress at the Presidential inaugural next January?”
— NOTE: I didn’t say she would be taking the oath as President; as a New York State Senator, no matter who wins the presidency, she will attend the inaugural representing her state.
Contact Scott Ross
Thanks for all the comments to my “Rant” from last week. I especially appreciated the response to the piece from my father’s notes. I’m going to talk about this easy believe-ism in some future commentary.
As theologian Richard Niebuhr put it, in regard to “pop Christianity” (as I call it), are we talking about “a God without wrath who brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross?”
The throwaway line about “Billary” got quite a response too. Some of you guys are funny.
Wow. What a phenomenal quote from your father. What an amazing legacy you have!
Scott, it would have been much better for me as a young believer if someone had told me this truth rather than "you can have it all." Why else would Jesus have told us to "count the costs"?
Thank you for sharing your father's sermon notes. Do you have any more?
Scott, a question, please, about your father's notes. Do you think the church members of his time were more or less
accustomed to this way of thinking about their Christian walk?
Sounds like they were in your father's church, but what about
churches of that region and time as a whole? Do you think they saw the "way of the cross" as normal Christianity?
I'd like to read more of your father's writings. Was he published?
As someone who has led a "wrecked" life, your father's words are very comforting and affirming to me. I plan to post them where
I can read them often.
Scott's Response to J.
Yes, yes, and yes to your questions.
“The way of the cross” was normal Christianity. Isn’t that what Paul said? Our church was the Apostolic Church in Glasgow, Scotland, a fruit of the Welsh revival in the early 1900s.
He was not published, however. The only things he left me when he died in 1959 were his Thompson Chain Reference Bible (here in front of me as I write), his notes, a library of books by English Bible teacher, T. Austin Sparks, and his desk. Quite a legacy!
Oh Scott, oh that the "church" could hear this searing Truth from your father.
Yes, and let's remember Dietrich Bonhoeffer who said "When a man comes to
Christ, he is called to die."
What, please tell me, is all this noise about churches
filled with "happy christians?"
Scott's Response to J.
I talked to Colson about all this “pop Christianity” stuff and he called it heresy…on camera! Now let’s see if it makes air.
Yes, and "...I never knew you" are terrifying words, even to the most devout believer.
Blessings, Scott. I love you, brother. Let's hang in there. Let's run the good race.
I like what your dad said! I hope I can see your interviews.
Hillary will wear a pantsuit...did you see Jeannie Moost's story on the pantsuits she wears? Very funny.
What makes you think that she will be there? However, she may get an invite from someone.
“Will Hillary wear a pantsuit or dress at the Presidential inaugural next January?"
If she wins, it would be a pantsuit. He, my friend, will wear the dress as the First Lady! Think I can make it as a comedian?
Regardless, if she [Hillary] is not taking the oath as president, I don't think anyone will even care what she wears.
Your roots are full... your father was spot on. I don't find the room too crowded concerning such words, though. Words such as these are stirred because you first stop and turn aside, fall on your face, and know your life is not yours.
Did the apple not fall far from the tree or what? You outta the box, upside down family.
All right! A Dion interview to look forward, too!
I sure hope you had a nice visit with him. He seems to have struggled with his walk like the rest of us.
The Keaggy interview was great. I wish you would interview him every week!
As for Hillary, I don’t think it will matter what she is wearing when President Obama is sworn in.