I am the Very Model of a Blogging Evangelical

Like an earlier post, Raiders of the Last Movie I Watched, I wrote the following many years ago as a satire on what was then new to me: the world of Christian bloggers. I was pretty naive about what I actually found there after entertaining hopes that this new (at the time) form of communication would be a radical development in connecting and building up believers half a continent to half a world away. I’ve since concluded that even disillusionment can be productive: all you lose in the process is some illusion you had about the world. Seeing things more clearly never harmed anyone.

One of the reasons I left the Christian blogosphere (aka the Godblogosphere) was . . . the Christian blogosphere. It sounds a little foolish, but I thought that mature, intelligent people sitting at their keyboards might act differently than they did in real life(!)

Or that they might look upon the privilege of worldwide, near-instantaneous communication as too valuable to waste on petty arguments, axes to grind, etc. If only I had remembered Jesus’ words: “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good” (Mt 12:33). What happens when a handful of fractious Christian bloggers meets the world’s largest vanity press (i.e., the Internet)? That’s why I wrote the following three years ago.

Gilbert and Sullivan aren’t exactly household names today (although The Simpsons had Sideshow Bob sing a few numbers from H.M.S. Pinafore), but I took my inspiration from “The Major-General’s Song” in The Pirates of Penzance. (Full title of the song: “I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General.”)

It’s known as a patter song, and if you listen to an excerpt–try YouTube for the full effect–you’ll see why it’s one of the most difficult to sing. The original is pretty funny, if your tastes run to comic operetta.

The gist of the original is that the well-educated (overeducated?) major-general, since he has difficulties distinguishing “a Mauser rifle from a javelin,” would be much more effective if he had “a smattering of elemental strategy.” Christian bloggers would . . . well, make a tree good and its fruit will be good.

I Am the Very Model of a Blogging Evangelical

I am the very model of a blogging evangelical,

I’ve got a blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

I know the parts of TULIP, and I know the church historical,

From Pentecost to Gnostic Gospels, blogging like an oracle;

I’m very well acquainted, too, with matters cinematical,

I’ve been to all the movies, so my blogging’s quite piratical,

About the movies’ Christian themes I’m teeming with a lot of news,

And many trenchant points about such things no one could ever use.

Chorus: And many trenchant points about such things no one could ever use. (3x)

I’m very good at site design and making things with Photoshop,

Sometimes I just amaze myself and then I don’t know when to stop;

I’ve got a blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

I am the very model of a blogging evangelical.

Chorus: He’s got a blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

He is the very model of a blogging evangelical.

I know about translations, both the literal and paraphrase;

I own so many study Bibles listing them would take two days;

I parse the Greek original, I’m like a walking lexicon;

I quote so many proof-texts, chapter, verse, and, yes, the page it’s on;

I love apologetics and can tell you why the gifts are gone,

I fathom ev’ry mystery, there’s no verse I couldn’t blog upon;

Then I can post a comment on your blog just like a Pharisee,

‘Cause nearly everything I do is plainly done for men to see.

Chorus: ‘Cause nearly everything he does is plainly done for men to see. (3x)

Then I can write another post so very theological,

You’ll overlook the lack of love that’s almost pathological;

I’ve got a blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

I am the very model of a blogging evangelical.

In fact, when I know what is meant by taking the plank from my eye,

When I can comprehend that mercy’s more important, and know why,

When I can grasp that God still hears, yes, even in the blogosphere,

And when I know true wisdom still begins with the right kind of fear,

When I learn greatness doesn’t mean increasing traffic ev’ry day,

When I can seek out ancient paths and be content to walk that way,

In short, when I’ve a smattering of elemental faith some day,

You’ll see the Christian blogosphere is not so bad as people say.

Chorus:  You’ll see the Christian blogosphere is not so bad as people say. (3x)

You see, my knowledge of his ways is just imagination,

Just thinking that I know things when they’re learned by revelation,

But still, my blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

I am the very model of a blogging evangelical.

Chorus: But still his blog you ought to read, it’s relevant and biblical,

He is the very model of a blogging evangelical.

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