Combing the Net – 4/26/2011

What Can We Learn By Comparing the Old and New Covers of the Left Behind Books? — Two observations: (1) This article has much more substance than any of the books, and (2) the new covers ruin about the only thing the series had going for it. I actually thought the old ones looked kinda nice.

Chernobyl 25th Anniversary — A photo essay showing some of the long-term effects of the nuclear disaster that happened on April 26, 1986.

Fire Ant Rafts — Fire ants may be nasty little creatures, but they sure do have some cool characteristics! This research study has shown that when they latch together, they repel water like Gore-Tex, and you can mold them like playdough. And in case anyone is concerned that many ants died during the testing, the engineer leading the project assures us, “After you get bit a couple times, you lose your sympathy for them.”

“Yet They Look Vaguely Like Babies” — An abortion defender says it’s “pro-life propaganda” to show women ultrasounds of their unborn children before they have an abortion. Apparently that’s manipulative, because fetuses look like babies, and an ultrasound might dissuade someone from killing one.

The Disappearing “Mushy Middle” — Tim Keller makes some great points in this short interview. Among them is his observation that America is simultaneously becoming more religious and more secular. It is a polarization, with middle ground disappearing. He fleshes this thought out in more detail in the introduction to his excellent book The Reason for God.

Bryan Chapell Interviews Derek Webb — A very insightful interview with the controversial singer. It’s definitely worth a listen! I really liked Webb’s answer to the question of whether he considers himself appealing more to the Christian or secular music market:

“When you take the word ‘Christian’ and apply it to anything other than a human being, that’s a marketing term… so I don’t think there’s any such thing as ‘Christian music’. I think it’s a false sense of security… What could ‘Christian music’ possibly mean? It doesn’t mean that the music you’re hearing on your local Christian radio station is the only music we’re going to listen to in heaven because it’s ‘redeemed’ somehow inherently. Jesus came as a human being to redeem human beings, not music. Now, Christian and secular people — so to speak — make art, but the art they make is not inherently Christian or secular.”

New Album from Sojourn Music — Sojourn Music is quickly becoming one of my favorite groups. Their music is theologically rich as well as musically interesting… a pretty rare combination these days! This album is the second in their ongoing “Isaac Watts Project”, where they are setting texts from the 18th-century hymn writer to new music. I haven’t gotten all the way through the new album yet, but what I’ve heard is phenomenal. Below is a preview video for the album. You’ll find links to where you can purchase the CD or stream the music live online at the link above.

2 comments on “Combing the Net – 4/26/2011

  1. Jeff Wright says:

    Hey man,

    Good find on the Chernobyl photo essay. I spent about three days last week totally enraptured by the Chernobyl catastrophe, reading and watching everything I could. Have you seen that there is a spontaneous wildlife sanctuary that has popped up in the exclusion zone? Pretty amazing the species that are living in there. The latest issue of Wired had an extensive article on it.

    That’s probably too much of a comment on that but, like I said, I spend about three days saturating myself in that. Someone should make a movie about that too, it could be phenomenal.

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