September 22, 2020

What are the best shapes of cookware for glass top stove?

To get the best results from your glass stove and maintain it for long time use, apart from the material of cookware will work best with your stove, it is also important to know the shape of pots and pans that can work great and do not damage your glass top.

Why do you need to get best cookware for glass top stove? Well, it is because you won’t want to scratch, break, or simply shatter the glass stovetop. Your selection will not be corrected unless you know the best shape of cookware for glass top stoves.

#1 Flat bottom Shape

This is the first and most important aspects when shopping around for the cookware use for glass top stove cookware. The glass top stove is flat and smooth so the flat cookware is the most appropriate for it. The bottom of the cookware also effect on how fast cooking process would be.

Pots and pans with flat, heavy bottoms will ensure that heat will be properly transferred and evenly distributed. They help increasing efficiency and decreasing cooking time. On the other hands, warped, dented or curved cookware can damage and scratch the glass on your stove.

#2 Diameter

Next is the size of the bottom. The size if also important when it comes to the cookware for glass top stove.  Bigger is not better for glass cooktops. For better results, your cookware needs to be the same size as the circles of burner markings on your cook top.

If your cookware fit with the circles on your cooktop, heat will transfer more efficiently. There is the basic rule that cookware size is not to exceed the burner markings by more than one inch. If your pan size is larger than the burner by more than one inch, your food on the pan may not be cooked evenly. Measure those up and go get the right sized cookware.

#3 Cookware’s weight

Both too heavy and too lightweight cookware are not good for glass top stove. Typically, cookware with the heavier bottom is better for glass top stove. The heavier the cookware the more contact it will have with the glass top, and conducting heat much better.

However, too heavy is not easy to handle and increase the risk that the cookware may be dropped and you risk accidentally cracking your cooktop. The too lightweight cookware does not stay on the top of the glass stove.

August 10, 2020

What are the tips to create the best chinchilla cage setup?

Once you know clearly about all the basic things you should place in the best chinchilla cage setup. You also should know how to properly choosing them. Set up the new cage is the aspect that should not be lookover.

It is not advice to get the budget-friendly option to saving money, since your chinchilla can be the long-term companions with you. This is why in this post, we will give you some tips to properly choosing the perfect items for chinchilla’s cage set up.

#1 Go with metal, no plastic at all

As mention above, chinchilla can be the long-term companions since they can live for 10-20 years. This is why choosing the durable chinchilla cage that can go with them a long time is vey important. Chinchillas are rodents; they tent to chew everything around them to wear down their teeth. Cages made of plastic and anything other than metal tend to not last long with chinchillas.

Not only that, chew on plastics can be toxic and unhealthy for chinchillas. Therefor, not only cage but also all the accessories and equipment inside the cage also should not made of plastics. Metal cage is always the recommended to use as it cannot be chewed.

#2 Horizontal bars cage is better than vertical ones

It sound roughly strange at first but horizontal bats are usually have smaller gaps, which will prevent your chinchillas from being caught and escaping. Beside, the Horizontal bars are more flexible, it allows you to easy attach water bottles, hay racks, wheels and some other accessories on the side of the cage.

The bigger gaps of vertical cages also make the small legs of chinchilla easy to get through and stuck,

#3 A heavy food bowl, not plastic

As you know, chinchilla prefer to climb and jump inside their cage. And they may accidently kick and tip the food bowl, make it turned over. You recommend to go with the ceramic bowls. It will ensure your chinchilla can be able to chew it. And it also heavier ensures that when my chinchillas happen to jump or push against it, the food does not spill.

There are also the second options that you can get the cage that contains food bowl that attach to the bottom of cages. This kind of bowls are also work great with the jumper chinchilla. However, it may get hard for you when cleaning daily.

May 15, 2020

Should You Get Tetra Whisper Internal Filter For Your Aquarium?

While the other types of external filters need a lot of space, the best fish tank filters internal will sit perfectly inside your aquarium and do not take you lots of space.

In the case that you own a small to the medium-sized tank and you do not have much of an empty room to install a filter, then you should get the internal filter.

One of the most common options when it comes to internal filter is Tetra Whisper internal filter. This is a simple device but works very effectively in keeping the tank water always clean.

What is tetra whisper internal filter?

Tetra is one of the most reliable, trustworthy manufacturers in the aquarium industry. They have been known as their high-quality fish food, aquarium devices and also aquarium filter.

Tetra whispers internal filter is manufactured by Tetra. As the name suggested, this filter is a whisper-quiet operation. Tetra Whisper filter is designed to filter the tank from 3 gallons up to 40 gallons.

This is a simple device that uses 3 stages filtration system to keep the water clean.

What’s is in the tetra whisper internal filter?

Filter mounts inside the aquarium

Pre-assembled whisper Bio-Bag cartridges

Catches debris dual sides

Holding clip

Instruction

Tetra whisper internal filter attach to the inside of the aquarium by suction cups so you can place it wherever you want. This also allows you to filter even in low levels of water.

Advantages of tetra whisper internal filter

Although this filter is simple and small, base on its 3 stages filtration system, this device can thoroughly clean your tank.

A dual sides bio-bag cartridge provides mechanical and biological filtration that will filters debris, fish waste as well as reduce odors and discoloration.

Tetra whispers internal filter estimated as a good product by many users and experts. It also has a reasonable price compared with other devices. This filter will last for years without much effort of maintenance.

April 21, 2020

Buying Guide: Best Scopes for .338 Lapua Magnum

According to historians, best scopes for .338 lapua magnum was developed as one of the most important cartridges in the latter 20th century. The novel design of the cartridge allowed it to surpass its predecessors as a handy long-range rifle.

What makes 338 Lapua Magnum a dominant force

One can’t deny the significance of this long-range rifle. It was initially designed in a way to penetrate body armor within a 1000-meter range. However, later it has been effectively utilized up to 1500 meters and beyond.

It was also known as the 8.6x70mm, was originally developed in 1983 as a long-range sniper cartridge for the U.S. Navy. It was considered as a very potent force then and surpassed all the major long-ranged rifles then. It is responsible for the longest range sniper kill in the combat at 2,707 yards, making it a dominant force even now.

Scopes for 338 Lapua

If you’ve been owning a 338 Lapua Magnum sniper, you can’t afford to miss your target. However, if you don’t have a precise rifle scope, you can’t really expect to hit the target. Therefore, one needs the best scope in order to cope with this issue.

Whether you’re a hunter or a weekend range regular, buying a rifle scope can prove to be a difficult job, owing to the fact that you don’t know what to look for. So, to make things easy, one can look for these features within the scope.

Buying guide of scopes for 338 Lapua Magnum rifle

#1 Magnification

As we know that 338 Lapua is made for very long-range shooting. Hence, a scope with the most better magnification is preferred in order to comply with the attributes of the rifle.

#2 Construction of scope

The construction or body of the scope also matters. It varies in diameter of 25mm, 30mm, and 34mm. Due to its long-range capacity, a scope with a larger tube is preferred.

#3 Light transmission

For a better aim, you need to produce brighter, clear, and crisp images with the best contrast possible. As one can’t really predict the time of hunting and one needs to cover their backs at the night time. This makes light transmission a vital feature.

#4 Parallax

These are not usually present in the short-range scopes but utilized for long-ranged distances due to high power. So, for the optimum working of 330 Lapua scope parallax can play a huge role.

#5 Eye Relief

Don’t give a second thought when thinking about the recoil of a rifle of this caliber. Undoubtedly, the recoil is quite immense. For that reason, the scope for 338 Lapua should have good eye relief is mandatory in order to nullify the recoiling effects.

Click here for fmore info.

March 27, 2020

All you ever need to know about Odyssey batteries

Odyssey batteries have a huge power source to start. At the same time they have high-cycle capacities. Odyssey batteries not only have great power sources, but can also unload at any given moment. This is because these premium batteries have a high quality and contain 99,9% clear led. Odyssey batteries have battery plated that use ledden and old led. This plates are extremely thin. Because of this there is a larger capacity in the battery. More ledden plates, simply cause more power.

Odyssey batteries are designed to:

  • Last three times as long as a normal battery
  • Clear ledden plates connection
  • Shock robust
  • Robust cel connection
  • Meets the agreements of military specifications
  • Build for every demanding user

They are also designed (mainly) for the following vehicles:

  • Motor bikes
  • Transport and trucks
  • Industry and agriculture
  • Marine and boots
  • Recreative water sports
  • Regular cars, taxi’s and busses

It must be clear now that odyssey batteries are not common. There are however also some bad points about these batteries. People who love the environment are strictly against these products. They are very hard to destroy and when throw into the nature it can cause serious harm to soil, plants and animals. The process time to destroy or reprocess an odyssey battery takes three times longer than a normal battery. The most odyssey batteries are also hard to charge, when you buy a good charger, you will have to pay a minimum of $100.- and up. Because the cells are so strong, the material is also very hard to remove. There are around 100 items in just one battery.

February 21, 2020

What Others Are Saying

Luder WhitlockPresident Emeritus, Reformed Theological Seminary:

Evangelicalism needs more books like A Lover’s Quarrel to challenge its complacent acculturalization — because the gradual changes that have occurred during the last 40 years have not always been beneficial.

 

Dr. Alex McFarlandpresident of Southern Evangelical Seminary, and author of “The Ten Most Common Objections To Christianity”:

For those who are truly serious about the implications of Christ’s Great Commission, I highly recommend “A Lover’s Quarrel.” This book is for all who are broken over the fact that our nation is spiritually bankrupt, despite a well-funded American Christian industry and thousands of Dolby-surround-sound-equipped churches. Reading it reminded me of what a doctor said to my father as he was about to undergo chemotherapy: “What you’re about to experience will be painful, but it is necessary to save your life.” I applaud Warren Smith’s scholarship and courageous candor. I pray that many will give serious consideration to the content of his book.

 

Marion Montgomeryauthor of more than two dozen works of criticism, fiction, and poetry:

Warren Cole Smith’s Lover’s Quarrel With The Evangelical Church recalls us to a once known but largely forgotten truth: that bad ideas have bad consequences despite good intentions. He is charitable with the Evangelical Church, but he reveals its deconstructions of orthodox understandings of Christianity. He speaks arrestingly of what it means to recover a valid sense of Christian community in its reality, not the technological spectacle of “virtual reality,” however sincerely pursued.

 

Dr. Allan CarlsonPresident, The Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society:

In his new book, Waren Cole Smith delves with grace and disturbing insight into the promise and bewildering failures of modern American evangelicalism. Writing from long experience within the movement, he reveals how evangelicals have succumbed to the glitter and material enticements of the world. Importantly, his “lover’s quarrel” with evangelicalism also draws on other traditions — Christian and non-Christian — to show believers the way back to a surer grounding of the church in the Gospels.

 

Dinesh D’Souzabest-selling author of What’s So Great About Christianity:

Both thoughtful and courageous.

 

Dr. Marvin Olaskyeditor-in-chief, WORLD Magazine, and provost, The King’s College:

Words exchanged in lover’s quarrels are best quickly forgotten, but the terms Warren Cole Smith uses to critique current evangelical excesses – “the Christian Industrial Complex,” “Body-Count Evangelism” – should long be remembered. Smith points out that megachurches sometimes inflate their numbers, but even an accurate count may register only superficiality. Smith’s call for churches to emphasize spiritual depth is worth hearing.

 

Dr. Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California:

This is an important book for a crucial moment in our history as Christians in the United States. Besides being richly biblical in its analysis of contemporary evangelicalism, this book is written by a veteran journalist with hard-hitting and inescapable data to support his conclusions. I highly recommend this book.

 

William Lobdellformer religion editor of “The Los Angeles Times” and author of “Losing My Religion”:

Warren Cole Smith’s “A Lover’s Quarrel With The Evangelical Church” is the perfect dose of tough love that the evangelical community needs to become a better (and much more attractive) witness to the secular world. Warren easily wins the “quarrel” by using biblically based arguments backed by solid research that don’t leave much wiggle-room for debate. It might make some Christians uncomfortable, which is exactly why they should read this book.

 

Pat Terrycontemporary Christian music pioneer:

For those who’ve scratched their head and wondered how in the world evangelicalism arrived at its current state, this book opens some doors of insight. A compassionate tone overrides the temptation to cynicism, and in that context the author provides a narrative which I can’t help but think will benefit defenders and naysayers of the movement alike.

 

Dr. Michael Jordanprofessor and chair, Department of English, Hillsdale College:

Warren Cole Smith, a long-time member, spokesman, and activist in the American evangelical church, serves this same church well by calling attention to some of its besetting sins and flaws. What distinguishes Smith’s critique from others is his use of Richard M. Weaver’s Ideas Have Consequences (1948) to expose cultural and theological diseases in both evangelical churches and in the ubiquitous evangelical parachurch organizations. In A Lover’s Quarrel with the Evangelical Church, Smith utilizes Weaver’s perceptive, prophetic critique of modern American romanticism, sentimentality, and tradition-destroying reliance on mass media to build up, not to tear down, the Evangelical Church.

 

Dr. Michael A. LonginowProfessor and Chair, Department of Journalism, Biola University:

Warren Cole Smith, like a good tour guide, points out the sights and sounds of a troubled Evangelicalism in ways that will make you want to get off the bus and look around. His keen and ironic sense of history makes points of interest take on a life of their own. For those concerned about Evangelicalism, Smith’s tour becomes one more reason to seek change. For those who didn’t know Evangelicalism was in trouble, his insights will be an important wake-up call. It’s one of the most poignant and clearly written histories of Evangelicalism and its connections than has been written in quite a while.

 

Steve Rabeywriter and editor of Youthworker Journal:

There are plenty of critics and blowhards who lob rhetorical bombs from a safe distance. But Warren Cole Smith has done something more rare and valuable. He has wrestled with both his conscience and with the mixed messages of his Christian tradition. The result is an honest, thoughtful, heartfelt and provocative book that will challenge readers to do some similar wrestling of their own.

 

Dr. Gary Scott SmithProfessor of History, Grove City College, and author of Faith and the Presidency: From George Washington to George W. Bush:

In his powerful, judicious, constructive critique of evangelical churches, parachurch organizations, media, and culture Warren Cole Smith demonstrates that many evangelicals have become addicted to size, speed, and power and have abandoned a biblical perspective of creation, history, and mission. Determined not simply to point out problems, but to help evangelicals regain a biblical focus and fulfill the evangelistic and cultural mandates more effectively, he provides positive examples of what some organizations and congregations are doing to further these aims.

 

Steve MayePresident, Lead With Character, and Trustee, Erskine College:

Lover’s Quarrel is a riveting book that clearly separates real Christianity from both the feel-good movement and the money machines that drive much of modern evangelicalism. Who better to write this book than Mr. Smith who has been a key opinion-maker in the national evangelical movement? A careful yet truthful analysis of the Church today. A must read for any thinking Christian.

 

Alan R. Crippen, IIPresident, John Jay Institute:

Warren Smith offers an insightful and deeply personal critique of the evangelical movement from the inside-out. As a man of the movement, Smith’s provocative assessment hits home. His penetrating analysis, however, goes beyond self-criticism and offers evangelicalism a pathway toward recovering its high-cultural heritage as a significant and vital movement of religious and social reform.

February 21, 2020

Read the “Introduction”

My Name Is Warren, and I’m a Recovering Evangelical

I am a man who is very reluctantly and grudgingly, step by step, destroying myself so that this nation and the faith by which it lives may continue to exist. It is not a role I would have chosen for myself. I am merely doing the job as I see it. Someone, some way, had to come along and lift off the lid. Someone had to say, “This is what’s inside.” The man who lifts the lid has to testify just as much against himself as against anyone else. —Whittaker Chambers in Witness

For most of my Christian life, I have considered myself an evangelical. From the time I made a public profession of faith in Christ at age fourteen and for most of my adult life until now, “evangelical” was a label I gladly wore. The word evangelical was one I liked because it seemed to transcend secular politics and religious denominations. I could claim kin with other evangelicals in denominations different from my own. I could disagree with someone about welfare reform or tax laws, but we could agree on the power of “Christ and him crucified” to save a lost and dying world, a world that includes you and me.

And being something of an amateur linguist, as most writers congenitally are, I appreciated its etymology. The word evangelical came into common usage only recently (in the twentieth century) and suggests the proclamation of the good news of Jesus. The word angel, which means “messenger,” is at the very heart of the word, and at the very heart of my own vision for my life, as both a writer and a Christian. I wanted to be a messenger of good news.

So I thoroughly immersed myself in the evangelical movement. From street evangelism to small-group Bible studies to Promise Keepers, I did it all. In college at the University of Georgia in the 1970s, I had a Sunday morning program on the campus radio station where I played Larry Norman, Randy Stonehill, and Phil Keaggy. I may have been the first disc jockey in North America—certainly among the first—to play an Amy Grant song on the broadcast airwaves. I began to see Christian media, radio and television in particular, as a way to infiltrate and ultimately subjugate the secularist mindset that I believed had overtaken the country. And I wanted to be a part of that process.

But all the while I was also reading and seeing things that caused me disquiet. Harry Blamire’s book The Christian Mind introduced me to the idea of a Christian worldview (though the book never used the phrase itself ). I drove from Athens to Atlanta one Friday afternoon in the late 1970s to hear evangelical icons Francis and Edith Schaeffer when they released their film series How Should We Then Live?, and I began to realize that the kind of culture they were wanting to see Christians be a part of and even champion was based on the highest and best traditions of Judeo-Christian civilization. But the evangelical movement was increasingly embracing low-brow, pop culture. When Frank Schaeffer, Francis and Edith’s son and their collaborator on that film series, renounced evangelicalism in favor of the Greek Orthodox faith, he declared that if his father were alive, he would not be an evangelical. At the time, I thought the declaration brazen. Today, I can’t help but think it might be true.

I still believed in the great hope of evangelicalism, which is summarized in the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19–20: “Go and make disciples.” But in the 1960s and ’70s, many evangelical leaders succumbed to a sense of dread in the air. The cold war was at its height. Israel had become a nation in 1948, and many believed this was the last great prophetic fulfillment. Vietnam and Watergate created national anxiety. Books such as Hal Lindsey’s apocalypse-predicting The Late Great Planet Earth were on the bestseller lists and were helping to define the theology of many evangelicals. When the Jesus Movement exploded on the scene, culminating—many say—with Explo ’72, a giant evangelical gathering in Dallas, it felt to many as if the Holy Spirit was doing a great work. But it didn’t take many more years to realize how ephemeral the fruits of those years were. The Jesus Movement had been, in part, a response to the dead orthodoxy of the mainline church, a church that had lost the power to transform lives. But what
the Jesus Movement evolved into was a lively heterodoxy that its often well-intentioned founders—many of whom were new converts and theologically illiterate themselves—could not control. Cults were founded or found a foothold. Heretical teachings infiltrated the mainstream church. Over time, as I suggested above, I began to grow skeptical over the conversion claims of some of the groups at the forefront of the movement. (It was becoming increasingly clear to me—based on mathematics alone—that filling out a decision card at a youth rally or stadium-style event is not necessarily a conversion.) Not only that, for every convert the evangelical movement created, it seemed to me, it left casualties—people who had grown skeptical or cynical about what they were seeing.

It was beginning to dawn on me that the Great Commission was a command to make disciples and teach them to obey the commands of Christ, not just tally up decisions like so many notches on a gun belt.

I also read Ron Sider’s Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger. The solutions that Sider has gone on to advocate in his career as a spokesman for the religious left I find problematic, but his fundamental diagnosis derived directly from Scripture that true religion is to look after widows and orphans in their time of need (James 1:27) was deeply convicting to me—and something I did not see much of in the evangelical church. The evangelical church had spawned the megachurch. It had become about power building, not power sharing. And it certainly was not about power sacrificing. I began to wonder if the true religion that James said is pleasing to God was something other than the religion that I and my evangelical brothers and sisters were practicing.

I pursued a graduate degree in literature and then a career in writing and publishing, so I was forced to read widely outside of the Christian ghetto. Many of these books could not be found in a Christian bookstore but were deeply Christian in their worldview or at least had much to offer someone striving to develop a Christian worldview. For example, in 1977 Paul C. Vitz published The Psychology of Religion: The Cult of Self-Worship. Vitz described how selfism—or defining the world in terms of one’s self rather than in terms of an objective or at least an external reference point—has infiltrated our culture and Christianity itself. Neil Postman’s 1985 book, Amusing Ourselves to Death, helped me understand that one of the basic premises of modern evangelicalism—that you can use any method to communicate the gospel so long as you don’t change the message—is ultimately a false and dangerous idea, because it is not possible. The medium really is the message. The words “Fear not. Jesus is Lord” spoken by a televangelist in order to get you to throw discernment and prudence to the wind and send him a “seed gift” is a very different message from the words “Fear not. Jesus is Lord” spoken softly by a pastor who holds your hand as you lie helplessly in the intensive care unit.

Both Vitz, who is a Christian, and Postman, who was not (he died in 2003), wrote much that was painful to read, about how this evangelical Christianity that I had embraced had gone
astray. Painful to read, but it also had the ring of truth.

What was even more painful to me was the disintegration of the lives of too many of my evangelical friends. Many of my friends from college, young men and women from backgrounds like mine, who in their idealistic youth thought they could “take back this generation for Christ,” were beginning to fall by the wayside. When Ted Haggard, the president of the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), admitted in late 2006 he had fallen into drug abuse and a homosexual relationship, he became emblematic of a disturbing number of people who I knew had been nurtured on the mother’s milk of the evangelical subculture—who had, like me, plunged snout and forelegs into the trough of Christian music, rallies, and all the accouterment found in a modern Christian bookstore—were falling away from faith, not growing in faith.

Spiritually speaking, we fed on this pablum to the point of bloat, but we remained malnourished. Many of the friends I thought would grow up to be leaders in the church were falling into depression. Their marriages were breaking up. Some succumbed to homosexuality or other forms of sexual promiscuity, often with devastating effects on their emotional and family lives. Several men I knew in the Christian music industry saw their lives and careers disintegrate as a result of drug use.

To be sure, some—many—continued to serve Christ. My college roommate, Craig Kent, left the University of Georgia a year ahead of me for medical school. He is a surgeon who spent many years as a missionary in Africa, serving with the wife of his youth and four growing children. There are a host of others I could name who have gone on to serve God honorably—some of whom make appearances in the book that follows, providing an example of our way forward.

Even so, I could not dismiss a troubling pattern I was beginning to see in the lives of men and women who I thought would be stout warriors for the faith. Of course, I knew that Paul taught about a time when Christians must stop drinking milk and move on to the meat. And it occurred to me that this was what I was seeing. Was it merely that the church was offering milk and no meat? If that were so, it would be a cause for concern, but not so complicated a problem. Just start serving meat. That may be easier said than done, but at least you would know what you had to do. Again, if that was indeed the problem.

But I began to fear that the situation was worse than that. It was almost as if there was something toxic in the soil of the evangelical garden. It may be true that most churches serve milk, not meat. But it began to look to me as though even the milk was tainted. It looked rich and nourishing, and for a while, for many young Christians, it was. But it was almost as if, like milk that contains mercury or lead, the poison was building up over time.

And even the poison was hard to recognize. It was an unanswered doubt that slowly eroded faith. It was a quick condemnation of homosexuality or alcohol or gambling, but an indulgence of greed and envy in the form of careerism. It was the hypocrisy of religious-right political leaders quick (and right) to condemn big government and its corrupting power, but who thought that the big ministries and megachurches they were creating would somehow be immune to the same corrupting power. It was all this and a lot more. The data my life experience was gathering pointed to a troubling conclusion: the men and women I knew who were still growing in faith twenty years after they were first planted in this garden had, almost to a person, transplanted themselves outside of the evangelical milieu in some significant way.

Indeed, one of the more interesting of many religious movements taking place in this country today is the quiet movement of many evangelical leaders—Frank Schaeffer is by no means the only one—away from evangelical churches to more historical and liturgical expressions of faith. Billy Graham was a founder of Christianity Today magazine, but today many of its editors and contributors are Anglican or Orthodox. Many of those on the staff of Chuck Colson’s organization are Roman Catholic.

My question, quite simply, is, Why? What is it about evangelical theology or evangelical practice that is both so appealing and so troubling? I could not deny that I had seen much good come out of parachurch ministries and evangelical churches, so I was not willing to throw the baby out with the bathwater. But it was clear that I was less and less comfortable calling myself an evangelical if what I was seeing was what that word meant. I began, you might say, to develop a lover’s quarrel with the evangelical church and evangelical theology and practice. My quest to resolve that conflict took me, among other places, to the little mountain town of Weaverville, North Carolina.

Getting at the Root Causes

One of the largest parachurch ministries in the world, Young Life, has a large and beautiful facility called Windy Gap in the mountains of western North Carolina, near Weaverville, which is just north of Asheville.

Over the years, tens of thousands of teenagers have come by car, van, and bus to Windy Gap. They often must drive through or—now that the interstate is finished—around Weaverville on their way to Windy Gap. The kids themselves are mostly from affluent suburban schools surrounding Charlotte, Atlanta, Knoxville, Greenville, Nashville, and other New South, Bible Belt cities—cities whose growth and influence in media, finance, and manufacturing have quietly usurped Rust Belt cities in both demographic (and therefore political) as well as culture-shaping power.

So it’s not surprising that these children of the New South who come to Windy Gap sometimes make fun of Weaverville, a town that still recalls the inferiority complex felt by the denizens of the Old South. Indeed, Weaverville is usually featured prominently in the skits performed by the Young Life staff members at nightly club meetings at Windy Gap. Club sounds more inclusive and less threatening than Bible study to the kids who come to Windy Gap. It is a time of song singing, joke telling, and skits that are crafted—as longtime Young Life staffers often said—to “earn the attention” of the kids, so the gospel can be presented to them. Most Windy Gap camp weekends culminate on Saturday night or Sunday morning with an opportunity for the kids to pray to receive Christ. Many thousands have done so.

But it was not at Windy Gap where I found the answers I was seeking. Indeed, the hundreds of thousands of kids and Young Life staff who have been to Windy Gap over the years would probably be surprised to learn that this town they often joke about was the birthplace of one of the great philosophers of the twentieth century, a man who had a powerful impact on the conservative movement that began in the 1950s and continues even today.

Richard Weaver, after whose family the town of Weaverville was named, published his landmark book, Ideas Have Consequences, in 1948, just a few years after the 1941 founding of Young Life by Jim Rayburn and about the time dozens of evangelical parachurch organizations began all across America.1

In some ways, of course, it is a bit ironic that Weaverville and Young Life should have histories that are so intertwined. Young Life is an organization that embraces kids with methods and techniques, music and video pulled directly from American culture. Richard Weaver’s little book, by contrast, is a brilliant diagnosis of what has gone wrong with our culture. Though it was never a bestseller, neither has it ever been out of print even a single day since it was published over a half century ago; and during that half century, it has had an impact on successive generations of conservative and religious thinkers. It is a little book about big ideas, which it gives away with its now famous opening line: “This is another book about the dissolution of the West.”2

Though Weaver was not a Christian believer, I recognized that his concern for the decline of Western civilization made us fellow travelers. Indeed, this dissolution of the West, which
Weaver attempted to diagnose, was exactly the precipitating cause of American evangelicalism. Most evangelicals (including myself then) believe that the world is in decline, that from the perfection of the garden of Eden we have descended and will continue to do so until we arrive at a depth so low that only the return of Jesus can possibly make things right. Things are only getting worse.

That Jesus himself did not see it this way is an important point. Jesus prayed and told us to pray, “Your kingdom come,. . . on earth as it is in heaven.” Jesus seemed to teach that things were getting—or at least could get—better. But Weaver was not concerned with unpacking evangelical theology. He was a historian, a philosopher, and a political scientist. He thought in terms of the rise and fall of civilizations, and his goal was to identify the cause of the decline that he was seeing in his own time.

Again, Weaver was no Christian, but he did acknowledge the existence of evil. And he had no trouble identifying specific evils. Weaver’s critique of the state of the world blamed the tendency of people today to view the world as they would like it to be, not as it really is. Weaver called this romantic view of the world “sentimentality” and said it was the enemy of reality and truth. Weaver said that modern psychology had turned many of us into spoiled children who refused to humble ourselves to our betters but expected happiness and help to be either the result of a simple step-by-step formula or (better yet) just given to us as if a birthright. He reserved special condemnation for what he called “the Great Stereopticon,” the modern media that for the first time in history combined words, pictures, and sound in a
single experience that had the effect of “decomposing eternity,” robbing its users of connections with each other, history, and posterity.

Reading Paul Vitz and Richard Weaver gave me a diagnosis of what had gone wrong with the world. The diagnosis is complex, but some of the manifestations are these: a sentimental and unrealistic view of the universe, how-to self-help books and programs, and television.

Indeed, when I read Richard Weaver’s sixty-year-old critique of the modern world and translated it into my own experience, a light bulb went on in my mind. Weaver was not describing a world from which evangelicalism offered deliverance. He was describing what modern evangelicalism had become!

In the Midst of a Dark Wood

If all or most or even some of what I have said so far is true, American evangelicalism, for all the good it has done, is in need of a modern reformation.

That is what this book is about. I call it a lover’s quarrel with the evangelical church because I believe it is important to speak the truth with love, as Scripture commands, but also to speak it as two lovers would. In a marriage, two become one. When a husband cuts his wife, he injures himself. So it is with the church. We are all members of the body of Christ. When one hurts, we all hurt. There is a unity and oneness to the body. Therefore, it is not the goal of this book to destroy, but to encourage, sharpen, and build.

So I write this book as one who is not on the outside looking in, but as one who has intentionally been on the inside for forty years. Though this book names the names of many evangelical leaders, it is important that you realize that I have not just reported, but actively participated in, many of the activities I describe here.

But like the protagonist in Dante’s The Divine Comedy, I came to myself in the midst of a dark wood. That dark wood is the American evangelical church. And like Dante’s hero, we will go a-journeying out and up, not with Beatrice as a guide, but with many guides, Richard Weaver among them. And along the way, we will describe what we see.

All of this because there is no unity without truth. That is why the strategy of this book will be to pursue the truth about the evangelical church in as unblinking a manner as possible. To look into its very nature and name what we see.

We have a model for this pursuit of the truth, this quest for insight into the very nature of things, at the very beginning of Scripture. All we have to do is follow God’s very first instructions to Adam in Genesis 2. After God had created Adam, he told him to work the land. God then brought all the animals to him and told him to name the animals. It was indeed a remarkable moment. Adam, in intimate communion with God, had each of God’s creatures before him; and Adam—with perfect insight—looked into the very nature of each animal; and based on that insight, he named each animal. God validated Adam’s work by saying, “Whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.”

Looking deeply into the very nature of things, and then rightly naming those things, is at the very heart of what it means to be human. It should be at the very center of any quest for the truth.

January 21, 2020

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January 21, 2020

About Warren Cole Smith

Warren Cole Smith has over 20 years of experience as a writer, editor, marketing professional, and entrepreneur.

Warren is the associate publisher of WORLD Magazine, the nation’s largest Christian news magazine. He has also served as the publisher and editor of the Evangelical Press News Service, a “wire service” for approximately 100 Christian newspapers with a combined print-run of more than 1-million each month.  Before launching a career in Christian journalism, Warren spent over seven years as the Marketing Director for a major division of PricewaterhouseCoopers, a “Big Five” accounting firm.

Warren honed his story-telling skills by writing outdoor and adventure stories — both fiction and non-fiction — for such magazines as Alaska, High Country, High Adventure, and Sports Afield. His essays, reviews, interviews, and articles have also been included in various books, including Public Relations, one of the most widely used college journalism textbooks in the world.

Professional and civic honors include selection to Outstanding Young Men In America and Who’s Who Among American Executives. In 1997 The Business Journal of Charlotte chose him as one of Charlotte’s “40 Under 40,” an annual list of the city’s business and civic leaders under the age of 40.  His monthly editorial column won the Evangelical Press Association’s top prize as “Column of the Year” in 2006.  A series of articles he did on AIDS in India won the Evangelical Press Association’s top prize for feature reporting in 2004.  During his time as publisher and editor of “The Charlotte World,” that paper won more awards from the Evangelical Press Association than any other paper, including twice being named “Newspaper of the Year.”  Smith’s column was named “Column Of The Year” by the EPA and the Fellowship of Christian Newspapers.

Warren has been an active supporter of the Boy Scouts for more than 30 years.  He is an Eagle Scout, and he served for seven years on the staff at Philmont Scout Ranch.  He served two terms as president of the Philmont Staff Association, and he has contributed to or edited four books about Philmont.

His education includes a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in English, both from the University of Georgia. He and his wife Missy have been married for 26 years, and they have four children.  His oldest is a graduate of Grove City College.  He has a son at the U.S. Air Force Academy.  Warren and Missy and their two younger children live in Charlotte, N.C.

He speaks often at churches, conferences, and other Christian and political events.  These speeches have included presentations at the national conferences of the Gospel Music Association and the Evangelical Press Association, in addition to hundreds of speeches at local and regional events.

January 21, 2020

About the Book

This will take you to Warren Cole Smith’s Christian Worldview Journalism Institute secure PayPal checkout where you will be able to complete your purchase. You will also have the option to buy multiple copies of A Lover’s Quarrel With The Evangelical Church. Thank you for your support and encouragement.

A Lover’s Quarrel With The Evangelical Church

Since World War II, there has been a flowering of evangelical activity and parachurch organizations. But something troubling has happened in spite of this growth – and the political and financial power it has created. Overall church attendance is not growing. America’s high divorce rate is just one of many melancholy cultural indicators. Is it possible that the “evangelical movement” has not been an antidote for this decline, but has actually caused this decline in the health and vigor of the true body of Christ? Using solid research and original interviews with some of America’s leading Christian thinkers, journalist and editor Warren Smith examines the condition of the evangelical movement, offering an assessment of what’s gone wrong as it has grown in power and size – and what must be done if it is to be “salt and light” in a culture in need of redemption.