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Tim Challies

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Headlines (November 28)

I spent a good chunk of time yesterday reading the introductions to Bible translations. Sounds fascinating, doesn’t it? I am hoping to do a series on this site about translating and translations, examining the differences in translations and trying to identify the superior ones. I dug up all the translations I could find around the house and found: NIV, NASB, NKJV, Holman and RSV and also read the intro to my Greek Bible and a French translation. It made for an interesting comparison of philosophies and priorities in translation. I hope to have an introductory study early next week and will then introduce various translations one at a time.

Are you the type to bemoan the lack of originality in popular music these days? I dug up an old bookmark yesterday that always makes me giggle. An obviously bored person made a recording of two Nickelback songs - one plays out of the right speaker and the other out of the left. Other than the words it is exceedingly difficult to tell the difference between them. The music is nearly identical. Give it a listen and you’ll see what I mean.

And while we’re on the subject of popular music, it’s interesting that a couple of Hollywood/music starlets have come out in favor of having children young. Britney Spears, now that she is so happily married, wants to have children. “A lot of people think you should wait till you’re older to have kids,” the Britster, 22, writes. “I’ve had a career since I was 16, have traveled around the world & back…The only thing I haven’t done so far is experience the closest thing to God and that’s having a baby. I can’t wait!” While Britney makes me nauseous, it’s interesting that she and other young women are talking about having children young, rather than waiting until they are 30 or 35 like so many women today. And that is as close to a tabloid as I’ll allow this site to come!

In an interview about his most recent book, Brian McLaren takes a little shot at Calvinists. He was interviewed by Greg Warner of Pastors.com and said “ ‘The people who dislike the book the most tend to be strict, high Calvinists,’ McLaren says. That makes sense, he adds, because Calvinism ‘is the highest expression of modernism.’ But he is heartened by the response he receives from other readers, most of whom praise its fresh approach. ‘I’ve gotten three negative emails and thousands of affirming ones.’” I have to put some more time and thought into his assertion that Calvinism is the highest expression of modernism. I would call it the highest expression of godliness and if that makes it modernist, so be it! In the same book McLaren suggests rewriting TULIP, so you know he is comfortable treading on sacred ground! On that basis I think I need to read The Story We Find Ourselves In.

And finally, I received the sad news yesterday that The Supertones have decided to call it quits. They will release a best-of album in January, follow that with a tour and then disband. This is no great surprise as they have had a lot of personnel turnover in the past years and their popularity has waned as ska fell out of favor with music fans. Still, they represented one of the few Reformed voices in Christian music and they’ll be missed. I wouldn’t be surprised to see “Mojo” (ie the lead vocalist and songwriter) to begin a new band or resurrect Grand Incredible. Here is the text of the press release from their web site.

The O.C. Supertones bid you farewell. Even in writing this sad letter, we hold our heads high. We are proud of this band, our accomplishments, friendships, but mostly, we thank the Lord for what He has enabled us to do these many years.

There were several reasons that factored into our decision. Rest assured, however, that after much discussion and lots of prayer, we believe this is the right path. Our end date is yet to be determined, but 2005 will be the Supertones’ last year together.

To our fans … you made us. You encouraged us day after day on the road, via letters as well as e-mails, through gifts and by your words. We are truly grateful to God for your support throughout the years. Sing as loud as you can back to us this last year. Let us hear your voices! There are others that have helped the band exist. Though some members have come and gone, they contributed greatly to The OC Supertones— Jason Carson, Tony Terusa, Darren Mettler, Brian Johnson, Kevin Chen and Dave Chevalier. Thanks for your hard work and all that you gave during your time with the Supertones.

To all our friends …thank you for years of affirmation and love. By God’s grace, our friendships do not end with the life of this band. You all know who you are. Lastly, thanks to our amazing families—wives, moms, dads, brothers, sister, etc. You have been our greatest encouragement through thick and thin, on and off the road, in and out of the band. We greatly appreciate your patience, tolerance and unconditional love. It has been our privilege and pleasure to play music while telling people about Christ. The Supertones are determined to make it a great last year. We would love to see you out at any of our shows.
Thank you,
The O.C. Supertones
(Matt, Dan, Ethan, Chris, John, Bret)