I was at Barnes and Noble in Matthews last night with my friend, Jim the writer, to hear Tim Keller and get my copy of The Reason for God signed. A good crowd turned out — a lot of RTS-ers, I gather. I saw some of the old crowd Mark, the funniest youth pastor ever, and Doug the best registrar ever. Funny how the superlatives are flowing the mostest and funny how neither are doing those things any longer.
Anyhoo (in your best Ned Rierson accent) it was nice to actually hear him speak — in person. During the Q & A time an attendee asked what place Christians and the church should take in political discourse? Without missing a beat he answers with H. Richard Neibuhr’s Christ and Culture. Now, I might have been able to come up with Christ and Culture, but I would never have been able to come up with how to apply it — which he did so eloquently.
While brousing, I saw Bart Ehrman’s book God’s Problem on the same table. (The picture you see was staged. Wha? Am I reporting news or making it?) You ever wonder why Ehrman’s seemingly provocative questions don’t really inspire while Keller’s answers move the heart and mind? I think the difference is the difference Sidney describes as the fantastic and icastic imaginations. Ehrman is fantastic — that is, he offers a vain imagining, an empty one. Keller on the other hand is icastic. He moves one towards the truth.