Aardvark Alley

Lutheran Aardvark

Confessional Lutheran theology, hagiography, philosophy, music, culture, sports, education, and whatever else is on the fevered mind of Orycteropus Afer

15 January 2007
  Going for the Gold
We Don't Need No Stinkin' Globes!

Small Golden Aardvark AawardCongratulations to another round of "winners" of the AARDIE (Aardvark Aaward for Raillery, Doctrine, or Intellect in Exposition) — a continuing response to the glut of awards shows and shallow "honors" bestowed by the rest of the world (and the corresponding dearth of similar commendations with which I agree).

Most Aardie winners come from within the ranks of self-proclaimed confessional Lutherans. However, some emerge from elsewhere and may be listed among the "Other Blogs" in the BBOV. The basic order of posts this time is random, interrupted by the occasional thematic association. We'll lead off with this edition's only non-Lutheran, a man who not only enjoys the support of this Lutheran aardvark but also is a "good blogging buddy" of The Burr in the Burgh.

Aardie: The Golden Aardvark AawardAs noted in the inaugural post, honorees "are invited to display the coveted (but not in a 10th Commandment manner, please) Golden Aardvark on their own blogs.... [T]wo sizes are available, discreet (above) and "loud and proud" (right)." I leave it to you to decide whether and which to use and whether to place it in the body of the honored post, in a separate post, or in your blog's sidebar. If you do mention receipt of the Aardie, you may certainly link back to this post or to the Alley.

And now, the envelope, please....

He's not a "token" Baptist, since I have more than one listed among the "other" blogs. However, Philip "The Beast" Meade certainly is Baptist, and as such, has some reasoned speculation and a few pointed comments concerning the direction that a couple ex-Presidents want to take his church in Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, and Baptists. Interesting reading for any religious body that has a significant internal faction trying to make it more "relevant" to "modern society."

As long as we're in the neighborhood of former chief executives, here's a tip of the snout to Dead Presidents, wherein Die Schreiben von Schreiber compares the very different lives and deaths of Presidents Gerald Ford of the U.S. and Saddam Hussein of Iraq and draws some sobering conclusions about the reaction to the latter's death.

Definitely not decaf, A Hidden God is a high octane introduction to the theology of the God who hides Himself in the mundane and ordinary — even in suffering and death. Seize the espresso, Café Diem!

While lighthearted, a pair of posts from the Chaplain to the World also provide a thoughtful overview of vocation and the task of fitting oneself into the life he finds himself living. The first, Jobs I Have Had, shows our hero's journey from childhood through college and seminary, with brief stops to examine the ways in which he's earned a living. The companion piece, the similarly self-explanatory Jobs I'd Like to Have, combines flight of fancy with a window on the Chaplain's soul as we discover how his personality leads him to at least speculate about these vocational options.

Ed Reiss, the Upstate Lutheran, unveils his response to a friend who believed in "believer's baptism" by pushing the boundaries of the Regulative Principle of Worship and asking him, Should Women Receive Holy Communion? Should Infants be Baptized?

The answer: Because it made me giggle and because it sounds like marriage in the real world. The question: Why did I include Stupid Fairy at The Home Files?

As long as she keeps thinking and writing this well, I'll keep encouraging people to read Rachel Engebretson's Here I Stand. This time she compares the Sunday Times and The Onion as she discusses the scientific and sociological reaction to attempts to change the sexual orientation of homosexual sheep. Yep, as Rachel says, Not Even PETA Could Come Up with This.

Long Eye Moose, a newly minted Lutheran blogger, shares the trials and occasional triumphs associated with the catechesis of his autistic son with Confirmation for the Disabled.

I selected this next entry for three reasons. First, I discovered something I'd never known about Filipino culture. Second, I learned more about the author of Extra Nos. Finally, I found an interesting angle on "living under the cross" as I read Lito's brief post, Lord, My Name Is Cruz.

I regularly visit Kelly's Blog because I never know what I'll find there (art one day, family matters the next, and deep theology later on). So it was that I discovered Election and Salvation: Four Views. Sort of like dipping my hand into a box of money, I wasn't surprised to find something good, although I had no idea until I read the post and the comments just how rich it was.

Sometimes we run into too much smoke and not enough light — there's been a bit of rather rough head-butting going on under the guise of a debate over justification, sanctification, and the proper application of the Law, particularly the "Third Use" in Lutheran theology. Not necessarily because I approved of everything each one said, nor of the manner in which some of the thoughts were expressed, but the willingness of some people to go to the mat for every one of the beliefs they hold dear enthralls me every bit as much as would an impending train wreck (not that I'd ever award the Aardie to a train wreck). I'll leave it to others to track down all the venues where posts were made and comments left behind, but will give you a bit of the flavor of the extreme passion (The Accuser Strikes Again at Theomony), the thoughtful tangents (Mortal and Venial Sins from Daylight), and the conciliatory, pastoral, yet firm and dogmatic (Talking about Sanctification and the Lutheran Blogosphere: Some Conclusions, Respectfully and Prayerfully Offered at Cyberbrethren).

Quite possibly, the only "good" divorce is A Christmas Divorce. At least Pastor Paul Siems states a strong case for that claim at Not Alone.

Simil iustus et peccator (at the same time saint and sinner) is one of the basic theological tenets of the heirs of Wittenberg. Several Lutheran blogs, including Ask the Pastor, Amor et Labor, and Confessing Evangelical have written specifically about it. Now Post-Emergent joins the ranks with Law and Gospel: Saint and Sinner, an excellent piece that works alone but belongs with several other posts on the general theme of Law and Gospel. Truly, the entire series is Aardie-worthy (or more); good job, Chris!

For something truly different, come with me as we take a walk on the wild water side. Actually, this walk (or run) is on the top side of the water as Not Quite Art, Not Quite Living introduces us to a little-known law of physics in Cornstarch and Water. I agree with the commenter who said of the video referenced in this post, "Strangely, that actually feels like four minutes of my life well spent."

Finally, Necessary Roughness tackles a topic near and dear to this aanonymous aardvark's heart. Dan initiated quite a discussion when he wrote On Pseudonymous Bloggers, as the post drew a good cross-section of comments from readers pro and con. Obviously, I favor the judicious use of the pseudonym. To my way of thinking, Alan Smithee had good reason to hide his real name and Publius did a masterful job of promoting the new American republic while shielding Hamilton, Madison, and Jay. Personally, if I never knew that Mark Twain was really Sam Clemens, George Sand actually Amandine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin, or Junker Jörg a mask worn by Martin Luther, I think that I would still respect and accept their writings at face value. Indeed, I wholeheartedly profess that the pseudonymous Mark Twain displayed many times the writing ability of a man who possibly should have hidden his true identity. I have in mind one Fenimore Cooper, whose Literary Offenses Twain so ably pilloried.

Keep on writing the good stuff and please remember, winners are invited to link back to this post so more people can discover the wonderful breadth of fine blogging the Aardies seek to expose.

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Thanks for the AARDIE

From the Indio guy
Thank you, Pastor, for the AARDIE award! I appreciate it.
Thanks for reading and the award.

The Beast
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