30 November 2005

Because I like this meme better:

More risky comic-book-parody humor

Regarding humor—sarcastic humor in particular—Spurgeon said,

I must confess that I would rather hear people laugh than I would see them asleep in the house of God; and I would rather get the truth into them through the medium of ridicule than I would have it neglected, or leave the people to perish through lack of reception of the message.

I do believe in my heart, that there may be as much holiness in a laugh as in a cry; and that, sometimes, to laugh is the better thing of the two, for I may weep, and be murmuring, and repining, and thinking all sorts of bitter thoughts against God; while, at another time, I may laugh the laugh of sarcasm against sin, and so evince a holy earnestness in the defense of the truth.

I do not know why ridicule is to be given up to Satan as a weapon to be used against us, and not to be employed by us as a weapon against him.

I will venture to affirm that the Reformation owed almost as much to the sense of the ridiculous in human nature as to anything else, and that those humorous squibs and caricatures, that were issued by the friends of Luther, did more to open the eyes of Germany to the abominations of the priesthood than the more solid and ponderous arguments against Romanism. I know no reason why we should not, on suitable occasions, try the same style of reasoning.

"It is a dangerous weapon," it will be said, "and many men will cut their fingers with it." Well, that is their own lookout; but I do not know why we should be so particular about their cutting their fingers if they can, at the same time, cut the throat of sin, and do serious damage to the great adversary of souls.

C. H. Spurgeon
Lectures to my Students

There are a couple of things I would like to add about humor, sarcasm, cruelty, kindness, and the Christian's duty not to look for reasons to take offense—but I'll wait till it's clear that the recent ugliness is really in the past and everyone is a little more calm.

(Finally, to the handful of individuals still badgering me about the blogwar, please re-read this.)

Phil's signature

54 comments:

mrclm said...

..all we are saying, is give peace a chance...I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony...

:-)

Have a good evening!

Big Chris
Because I said so blog

ScottyB said...

that was funny

Libbie said...

I think you need to stop these unfounded attacks on homeschool mums. You just keep sending out these broadsides and your tone is really unpleasant.
And it's all very well to say you're just trying to be humourous, but, well, what if others just don't think it's funny?
Shocked and wounded.

Jeremy Weaver said...

Now I have a new favorite Spurgeon quote!

Kim said...

Aw, could you not have at least made the home school mother look like a woman? She looks a little like a gnome-type grim reaper.

centuri0n said...

My BP this morning was 147/99, so unless you want to kill me, do the 7 sevens so Carla will stop bugging me.

Carla said...

Frank, it's a conspiracy to keep you in line. How's it working?

Kim, I thought she looked more like the ugly sister of Jughead from the Archie Comics. I think she lives in Kitchener, I'm sure I saw her there once.

Jim Crigler said...

Spurgeon twice in one week! I'm hyperventilating!

David said...

I tend to agree that people make too much of the blog wars. You probably shouldn’t blog, or at least engage in “commenting,” unless you have a thick skin. I have been roasted on more that one occasion by the folks at BHT, usually for saying something that they view as an attack on Lutheranism. BHT’s Josh S, especially when he had his own blog, often called me things like “crackhead” and once wrote that I was probably the “most hated Christian blogger”, although to be fair it was really a self-lament about how, at that time, he believed that he tied me for that distinction. Nevertheless, I consider him as a sort of (very smart) internet friend, whatever that means.

Joe said...

I think Psalm 119:165 gives a glimpse of why people get so easily offended.

marc said...

The "me-me tag" is to blogging as the "wave" is to major sporting events

Phil Johnson said...

Libbie: I was disappointed that everyone seemed to miss the ALT tag imbedded in yesterday's picture. If you're using IE, hover your cursor over that picture for the pop-up caption.

Gummby said...

And this is supposed to stop people from tagging you? Shoot, you'll probably be tagged 50x a day now, just on the hope of a comic book cover.

candyinsierras said...

Teaching middle and high school kids, and working with teen girls in a shelter is a great way to develop thick skin. I can testify!
Spirited debate is one of the pleasures of life. Demeaning people takes it too far, and is an easy way to deflect real debate. It's kinda like I say about comedians. Most comedians rely on crass humor as a way to get people to laugh. I call it easy laughs. It is a lot harder to develop jokes about every day life or utilize another kind of a hook that is not quite as predictable. I appreciate a genuinely creative comedian but can't stand crass humor.

I don't think the comic books and such take it too far by the way. I think they are extremely funny. A personal attack on a person is a bit different. Our words carry a lot of weight.

It is a good thing homeschool moms have thick skins after two comic book covers! Those pictures are great.

candyinsierras said...

I'm slow again. What is a me-me tag?

LeeC said...

Hmmmm, who do I know that uses sarcasm?

Job 38:1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said:
Job 38:2 "Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Job 38:3 Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me.
Job 38:4 "Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding.


Job 40:6 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said:
Job 40:7 "Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me.
Job 40:8 Will you even put me in the wrong? Will you condemn me that you may be in the right?
Job 40:9 Have you an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his?
Job 40:10 "Adorn yourself with majesty and dignity; clothe yourself with glory and splendor.



Jdg 10:14 Go and cry out to the gods whom you have chosen; let them save you in the time of your distress."



1Ki 18:26 And they took the bull that was given them, and they prepared it and called upon the name of Baal from morning until noon, saying, "O Baal, answer us!" But there was no voice, and no one answered. And they limped around the altar that they had made.
1Ki 18:27 And at noon Elijah mocked them, saying, "Cry aloud, for he is a god. Either he is musing, or he is relieving himself, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and must be awakened."


Man that Elijah dude is harsh. He must not be Spirit led eh?

Castusfumus said...

Looking at this parable (Matt.7:3-5; Luke 6:41-42) we note a humorous sarcasm in which Jesus contrasts two perspectives; those who need help with true religion, and those who profess to be of help. (Luke is continuing with his analogy of pupil and teacher.) As we look over the shoulder of the Pharisee we look, or as the Greek renders to gaze intently, at the speck that is in your brother’s eye. However, we find that our observation or look is perverted because we have failed to notice the log that is in your, the one gazing, own personal eye.

We stand back to see this comedy unfold. Two characters are positioned face to face, with one acting as a professional with a log protruding from his eye. The other is a patient in need of care. However, this protrusion renders our professional incapable to grasp his brother to help him due to his appendage. He steps forward only to batter and bludgeon his patient due to his ignorance. This would be a lot more humorous if it weren’t so prevalent in our churches today.

The question that demands to be asked is, “Who is this doctor?” The answer is in the following verse as, “you hypocrite!” This couldn’t be me could it? Why I belong to the so and so church and attend every time the doors are opened. How could I be considered a hypocrite? We must remember that Paul and Nicodemus did the same as did Luther and Calvin also. Does our religion seek to take the log out of its own eye first? When it will its pupils/disciples clearly recognize foreign material like a speck of heresy, and are competently trained to take out the speck that is in the brother’s eye.

Forgiven Sinner said...

I would have to say I agree whole heartedly with castusfumas.......

Der Fuersprecher said...

Phil,

Keep the humor coming - it is outrageously funny at times! Back here in Illinois, our entire office staff was laughing at the chub of beef imbroglio.

Sometimes, however, it’s just a bit too subtle (the alt tag bit) for the rest of us. We wonder now how much humor we’ve really missed out on and we suspect that we’re going to be running our cursors back over every image in your archives.

Libbie said...

You think an ALT tag absolves you?

Pah!

Have at you, sir!

Janet said...

Here's one homeschool mom laughing her head off!! Great stuff, Phil. I'm so sorry I missed it yesterday!

BugBlaster said...

As the husband of one of the homeschool moms that have already commented, I need to assert that homeschool moms don't usually look quite that cronish. The rare exceptions occur when a homeschool dad or kid has been an extreme dufus.

Kurt N. said...

david wrote:
I have been roasted on more that one occasion by the folks at BHT, usually for saying something that they view as an attack on Lutheranism.

Actually, Josh was probably the only one at the BHT interested in really roasting you. For the record, he took his lumps defending his Lutheranism at the bar.

I might have poked fun at your hard core Calvinism once or twice, but that's about it.

Coffee and a Muffin said...

That was a woman?!?

MTG said...

FWIW....

These blogwars are sooooooo juvenile. I am sure that 99.9% of the participants would never say in person what they post on the internet...of course maybe they would and that is certainly a scary thought.

and....sarcasm just one of the many services offered. You do it so well and have provided many laughs.

Phil, I enjoy reading your blog. Some things I totally agree with some not so totally. But that disagreement does not entitle me to be snarky at your blog home. IMHO it does not entitle anyone else to be snarky either.

A blog is an internet home so to speak and I believe that we should all be as respectful while visiting the internet home as well as the physical home address.

Thank you for a job well done...you have given me much to ponder...

Oh good grief what HAVE I started now?

Steve said...

Morgan said: "that disagreement does not entitle me to be snarky at your blog home. IMHO it does not entitle anyone else to be snarky either.

A blog is an internet home so to speak and I believe that we should all be as respectful while visiting the internet home as well as the physical home address."

Very well said, Morgan. Phil must get tired of mopping up all the mud that's slung by some of the visitors here.

Coffee and a muffin: You're not the only one who was surprised to find out that was a woman. I too thought it was a man at first.

Kim said...

I think to avoid confusion, the home school mom should at least have a dictionary or something.

Mikey C said...

As a lurking html pedant, I should say you should use the "title" tag if you want hovering captions, not the "alt". This works in the superior browsers as well. I'm going to lurk some more now. Thanks.

Father Brown said...

All of this talk of homeschool moms is making me feel left out.

Gaddabout said...

Whoa! If you hadn't mentioned the originator of that quote, I would have pinned that one on Mike Yaconelli.

"Mike Yaconelli was a dangerous, messy Christian. Our carpets are proof of it."
- Church frontage sign shortly after Yaconelli's death.

Gaddabout said...

I should also note to all the readers here I have taken several playful potshots at the Pyro on my blog -- not as correctives, but as mythological caricatures of faux ego in their proper absurd casting. My intent was to show I "get" what this blog is about, I am entertained and informed, and I wish to participate in my own way.

I'm only just now figuring out the Pyro has been aware of it all this time, and instead of blowing my battleship out of the water, he has decided to include me in this circle. He apparently is a strong reader who knows how to infer intent -- contrary to recent claims otherwise by his more visible critics.

I also wholeheartedly agree that is should take much to offend a Christian -- we who confess otherwise as chief offenders of God.

TheBlueRaja said...

"Phil must get tired of mopping up all the mud that's slung by some of the visitors here."

*GAG*

Phil? Downtrodden?

ajlin said...

< ignorance >What is a meme tag?< /ignorance > Somebody please condescend to answer!

candyinsierras said...

I think y'all should mosey on over to Purgatorio for a great statement on the Emergent Church.

candyinsierras said...

aljin...i asked the same question. i don't know what a meme is either.

pilgrim said...

I thought of the Job verses leec quoted, and I've noted Elijah on this before as well.

Paul was not above sarcasm either.

Impacted Wisdom Truth said...

Definition of MEME

ajlin said...

iwt:
The wikipedia definition just confused me more.
dave:
Was that comment a joke?

Phil Johnson said...

Dave Armstrong: I would love to have kept your comment as a monument to the sheer irony of your utter rudeness and hypocrisy, but it was off topic, so I deleted it. I'm sure you'll spam other blogs with the same stuff, so it's no loss, but for future reference, don't use my blog as a billboard for advertising your stuff. You've got a link in my blogroll in a suitable category. That's enough.

Ajlin: a meme is basically an idea that is propagated rapidly. It replicates like a living organism through modern communications networks. All the little quizes that infect the blogosphere daily (What character from Winnie the Pooh are you?) are memes.

(Rhymes with "dream.")

Brad Meyer said...

Thank heaven for the Reformed Calvinists' even-handed, gentle correction and their tremendous spiritual gifts in bringing the Body together. (sarcasm)
Still looking for that non-denominational, charismatic weblog that criticizes other Christians regularly out of duty. I know... they're too biblically illiterate to argue Spurgeon. Amazing those doctrinally challenged idiots all "full of the spirit" can't find a computer with an internet computer... rage on...

Phil Johnson said...

On the other hand, Brad, if you count the number of sarcastic comments you have left on my blog and compare them to the number of sarcastic comments I have left on your blog, you might get a totally different picture.

As a matter of fact, I can't remember a single time I have ever come to your blog and posted anything angry and snide.

It's curious that you would employ angry sarcasm to try to make a point against sarcasm. I don't think you made as strong an argument as you might have thought.

Brad Meyer said...

"Angry and snide" has different forms my brutha.
For the record, no one has ever come to my blog for any reason- ha!

Brad Meyer said...

PS I never argue or argued against sarcasm... best weapon against those that argue half-heartedly.
Now for some Spurgeon...

ajlin said...

Thanks for the clarification on the word "meme".

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

I grew up Charismatic, in both 'normal' churches and the swamps of the Word of Faith movement. I can't disagree with you more about the attitude of Charismatics toward the rest of the body.

From my earliest I was given a view of denominational churches and non-Charismatic Christians that was unrelievedly critical.

They 'didn't have the Spirit', had 'missed God' when it came to the new waves of spirituality, were 'forzen' and 'didn't know how to worship Him in spirit and in truth'. My fellow parishioners believed there was nothing to learn from the outside Christian world because they simply weren't operating at the spiritual level we were.

The churches I grew up with viewed the rest of Evangelicalism as either spiritually stunted or as a mission field in itself. I have seen nothing in the PCA that approaches the overweening arrogance of what I grew up with.

Am I broadbrushing all Charismatics? Not at all, not any more than you are about the Reformed. But this was widespread enough to extend to several churches in multiple states.

Just food for thought.

Brad Meyer said...

Discoshaman:
I appreciate your perspective but...
You've avoided my point- WHERE ARE THE HOSTILE CHARISMATIC, NON-DENOMINATIONAL WEBLOGS? Seriously, for me... I need 5 links.
Why is that there are hundreds of blogs like this that regularly grind up charismatic,non-denominationals, and I can't find any corresponding counterpart on the other side? Help me. Please.

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

I'm not avoiding your point at all. Frankly, I'm not emotionally invested in this enough to need to.

I don't read any Charismatic blogs, so I have no idea where these five are. I was answering in a more general way which I think has a bit more significance than your five blogs.

Inherent in the theology of many Charismatics is a restorationist view of the gifts and the Gift fot the Spirit which relegates the rest of Christendom to a second class status. This is a bit more significant to me than the few Big Meanie Calvinist bloggers which have you so exercised.

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

I'd also point out that the task you have set before us is hardly a fair one. Finding five Charismatic bloggers who know Calvin is someone other than a boy with a toy tiger ranks up there with cleaning the Augean Stables. . . :-P

Discoshaman said...

Sorry for the triple posting, but I wanted to make sure that you knew my tongue was lodged firmly in-cheek for that second post. :)

Brad Meyer said...

discoshaman-
Agree completely that their knowledge of Calvin is comparable to this blog sector's knowledge of the Holy Spirit- just someone that lived a long time ago.

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

If things are truly so bad, I'm sure you can find an exit to this "blog sector" somewhere. One can hope, anyway.

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

Are you just a fan of irony, or did you really not see how humorous it would be for you to claim we don't have the Holy Spirit around here?

My central point was that the people you're holding up as paragons are often tremendously spiritually prideful -- arrogating the Holy Spirit to themselves and denying that others have it.

So your riposte is to deny that we in this bog sector have true knowledge of the Spirit?

Fun.

Anyway, I'm done. I honestly don't care enough about this convo to get in a true dust-up over it. See you 'round the threads.

I'm leaving whatever unpleasantness there is in this discussion right here, and not bringing it with me in any future convos we have. Take care.

Brad Meyer said...

Yes, I am a fan of irony...
I'll give you the last word...

Discoshaman said...

Brad-

Okay, that word is. . . peace.