A Letter to The Learning Channel
To Whom It May Concern,
I write today to offer your television network the rights to what I am convinced will soon be the most popular reality show on television. Reality television has offered the discerning viewer much entertainment and so many opportunities to learn. We have learned how to dress, how to cook, how to build motorcycles and hotrods and even how to build beautiful rooms using plywood, staple guns and glue guns. We’ve seen what it takes to make it as an executive for the world’s leading corporations. We’ve seen the inner-workings of families of dwarfs and families of rock stars and have marveled at the skill of tattoo artists. But there is one area that has received shockingly little attention. I offer exclusive rights to an exciting new program to The Learning Channel.
I offer you Reformed Eye for the Arminian Guy, a new production currently filming pilot episodes in New York City. This exciting new program will offer theological assistance to those men who need it most. In each episode a fabulous team of Reformed men will track down an Arminian guy and offer him the makeover of a lifetime. Each of the five team members is an expert in a different field. Each will assist the subject of the program in a unique way.
Klaus is the library expert. He will examine the person’s personal book collection, weeding out any books that are deemed unworthy of a Reformed library. Graham, Yancey, McLaren and Lucado will be replaced by Edwards, Spurgeon, Calvin and Luther. Paperbacks and fancy hardcovers will be replaced by handsome leather-bound volumes, leaving a library that is both beautiful and theologically-correct. The subject will be provided with a library of commentaries, Reformed confessions, and a full collection of the writings of John Calvin.
Jonathan serves on the team as personal stylist. He will ensure that the subject of the show looks Reformed. The subject will be provided with a new wardrobe, complete with several handsome suits and a variety of sweater vests. He will be encouraged to wear a tie or other formal apparel at all times. He will learn the importance of always carrying pocket-sized Bibles and copies of Reformed confessions. And, of course, he will learn of the unsuitability of t-shirts, track pants and idolatrous accessories such as crosses. Tattoo removal will be offered to those who need it.
Marcus is the team’s theologian. His task is to help the subject understand the tenets of the Reformed faith. Marcus will offer an intensive, day-long overview of Reformed theology, beginning in the Old Testament, continuing to the New and then passing through the lives of Augustine, Luther, and Calvin. From there the course will survey the teachings of the Puritans, Jonathan Edwards and move to more modern times with Warfield, Hodge, Murray and the leading Reformed teachers of our day. The subject will be trained to refute the common objections to Calvinism and to uphold the principles of TULIP.
Charles is a renowned expert in Reformed decorum. He will help the subject learn to act Reformed. He will offer training humility, wonder, awe and spite. He will be told how to hold himself in times of public discourse and evangelism.
Bruce will assist the subject in his friendships and church affiliation, ensuring the subject heeds the admonition of Proverbs 25:19 that “Trusting in a treacherous man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips.” Bruce will interview the subject’s friends, deciding which of these friendships is worth pursuing and which must be abandoned. He will also seek out an appropriate church for the subject to attend.
After his makeover, the subject will be revealed to his family and remaining friends in a brief but meaningful ceremony.
Once this program has proven successful, we hope to expand the franchise to include a variety of similar programs built around similar themes: Protestant Eye for the Catholic Guy is currently under development and this will be followed by Cessationist Eye for the Charismatic Guy and Complementarian Eye for the Egalitarian Guy. Because of the theological difficulties inherent in women’s issues, we do not anticipate expanding the franchise to women.
I am sure you are as excited about this program as I am. I look forward to hearing from you very soon and eagerly anticipate working with you to add Reformed Eye for the Arminian Guy to TLC’s Fall lineup.
Producer, Reformed Eye for the Arminian Guy