2012 National Prayer Breakfast

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 02/02/12 under Blog

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Today I spoke at the Nat’l Prayer Breakfast in Washington.  During my speech I gave the President a copy of my Bonhoeffer book…  Here’s the article from WORLD. Here’s one from The Baptist Press. Here’s the Catholic News Agency.  And here’s National Review.

Emily02021FOR THE VIDEO, CLICK HERE!!!

My talk begins 35 mins in and ends with me leading the 3,500 assembled in singing “Amazing Grace”.  No kidding.

Guess who snapped this photo below?  None other than VP Joseph P. Biden, who of his own accord very graciously offered to take it for me!  Amazing.  I wonder how many photos there are of U.S. President’s taken by U. S. Vice Presidents?

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2012 National Prayer Breakfast

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Published by Rick Vlaha on 02/02/12 under Media Video
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Today I spoke at the Nat’l Prayer Breakfast in Washington.  During my speech I gave the President a copy of my Bonhoeffer book.

DAVID BLOOM (1963 – 2003)

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 01/05/12 under Blog

Exactly ten years ago today — on April 5th, 2003 — our friend David Bloom died in Iraq at the age of 39. Nine years ago I wrote this essay:

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BUT SWEET WILL BE THE FLOWER: The Life And Death Of NBC’s David Bloom
At twelve o’clock stood New York Governor, George Pataki. At one o’clock , White House Press Secretary Ari Fleisher. At two o’clock was former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani. At three o’clock , just across the aisle, were Katie Couric, Matt Lauer, and Ann Curry. Everywhere one looked were pundits and anchors and government officials, so many of them that you thought you had fallen into your tv set. There was Tom Brokaw and there was Tim Russert and there was Andrea Mitchell. And there was Chris Mathews and Lester Holt and Campbell Brown. And there was Dominic Dunne and there was General Barry MacCaffrey and there was Peggy Noonan. And there we were, my wife and I, at our friend’s funeral.

The scene was St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan, just over a year ago, and the sad occasion was the funeral of David Bloom, the former NBC White House Correspondent and Weekend Today Show anchor whose good looks and brilliance and ebullience had recently brought him the greatest fame of his famous life. For several exhiliarating and tense weeks the entire country had watched him and prayed for him as he bounced along in his modified tank, which someone had dubbed the Bloom Mobile, windswept and typically enthusiastic, the best-known embed in the Iraq War, updating us from the ever-changing middle of it all, and somehow reassuring us by his very presence, by his inherent and ineffable upbeatness, that everything — despite everything — was okay.

[To continue reading, click here.]

Chuck Colson’s Breakpoint on Bonhoeffer

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 07/25/10 under Blog

chuck_colson_0923Today’s Breakpoint w/Chuck Colson is on Bonhoeffer.  To hear Chuck, click here.  For the podcast, click here.   To read a chapter of Bonhoeffer, click here.

For the Catholic News Agency interview, click here!

To listen to a chapter of Bonhoeffer, click here!

Bonhoeffer Named Runner-up Best Book of 2010!

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 06/19/10 under Blog

2010-07-03cWorld magazine has named Bonhoeffer:  Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy — A Righteous Gentile vs. the Third Reich as Runner-up Best Book of 2010!  It deemed the book “immaculately readable…”  To read the article, click here.

Jimmy Carter to Eat Live Frog on “60 Mins.”

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 09/25/09 under Blog

Former_President_Jimmy_e309.JPGIn what critics are describing as a “shameless effort” to remain relevant, former President Jimmy Carter has agreed to eat a live bullfrog next Sunday night on the CBS program “Sixty Minutes”.

CBS execs are clearly thrilled, predicting a ratings bonanza beyond anyone’s wildest dreams.  “The broadcast will be live,” said CBS President Les Moonves, quipping “as will the frog.”  But friends close to the Carters are not amused, fearing the stunt will tarnish the former President’s legacy.   But Carter remains defiant, describing the act as a “vindication” and as a “valentine” to his rural childhood in Plains, Georgia.

Veteran media watchers are puzzled, calling the whole thing “bizarre”.  Some have suggested Carter was stung by the controversy over his remark that cast SC Congressman Joe Wilson’s outburst as “racially motivated.”  Eating a small amphibian on a nationally-televised program would serve to “turn the page”, with the added boon of possibly revitalizing the former President as a player on the international stage.

Carter was also thought to be upset that “Dancing With the Stars” had recently rejected him as a contestant.  Learning they had welcomed the participation of former House Whip Tom Delay was “the last straw”, according to his wife, former First Lady Rosalyn Carter, who told one friend that while casting about for a way to “leap-frog” ahead of his detractors, her husband’s thoughts had drifted to an incident from 1934, when he was eleven.  That memory seems to have sparked the idea for the “Sixty Minutes” appearance.  But details of this incident remain unclear, although Carter’s late brother Billy spoke of it in a 1978 interview:

“There was an old redneck feller who lived in a shack by the river.  Everybody called him ole Frawg, but I never knew why.  My brother Jimmy and I would go down there to taunt him and chunk rocks at him.  But one time that man taught us a lesson.  One rock hit ole Frawg in the small of the back and he went down.  Jimmy run over to see if he was still breathing, but as soon as he got close, ole Frawg grabbed him by the ankle!  The old feller was just playing possum!  He drug Jimmy to his shack and I ran home.  Later on, when Jimmy came home he told me that ole Frawg had said, “You boys think you kin get the better of ole Frawg.  But ole Frawg gonna teach you a lesson.”  Then he reached down into a cedar bucket and pulled out a bullfrog as big as his fist and he talked to it real tender, callin’ it his brother.  And then he chawed the critter’s head off.  Jimmy started crying, but ole Frawg said it didn’t taste half-bad.  He said his tastebuds wasn’t worth a damn on accounta he smoked so much ter-backy.  And he allowed as that old frog was in a better place than that stinky bucket.  Years later, when he had become a midshipman at Anapolis, Jimmy told me how the story had affected him, and how some day he’d tell the world about ole Frawg.”

Like, Who’s the Dude on the Plus Sign?

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 07/18/09 under Media Press

Q&A:  To engage the culture, say Eric Metaxas and Richard Land, Christians must deliver the ‘whole gospel’ to a people who are ‘wildly ignorant’ of it | Marvin Olasky

(Photo by JAMES ALLEN WALKER FOR WORLD)

Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the rare U.S. senator who was also a thinker, once said, “The central conservative truth is that it is culture not politics that determines the success of a society. The central liberal truth is that politics can change a culture and save it from itself.”

Conservatives have the better of that argument, but both fall short of the central Christian understanding, which is that only Christ saves us from ourselves, and that neither culture nor politics is of any help apart from God’s grace.

I recently moderated at The King’s College in New York a discussion between two thoughtful Christians that encompassed many topics, but particularly the importance of culture. Richard Land has served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission since 1988, hosts two national radio shows, and is a fan of Woody Allen. Eric Metaxas, founder and host of Manhattan’s Socrates in the City (“Mission to Metropolis,” Feb. 14), has written two biographies, 30 children’s books, and humor articles that Woody Allen called “quite funny.”

Here are excerpts of the discussion.

LAND: When we look at our culture today, we have to try to understand, and ask God to help us learn, how to explain the gospel to people who don’t have ready biblical references. I read an article in Time magazine about the lack of religion in some parts of America. One couple came to see an Episcopal priest after they had been to a service, and they said, “Our teenage son wants to know who the man is hanging on the plus sign.” They didn’t know it was Jesus and they didn’t know it was a cross. That sounds far-fetched to some of us, but I’ve been some places in our country where it’s not as far-fetched as you might think.

We have an obligation and a responsibility to live a whole gospel before that world out there. The idea that there’s a social gospel and a spiritual gospel is an invention of the devil. There is only one gospel, and it is a whole gospel for whole people. It is blasphemous to go out and seek to feed the hungry and not tell them about the bread of life, or to seek to house the homeless and not tell them that in our father’s house are many mansions, or to seek to give water to the thirsty and not tell them about the rivers of living water. It is also a denial of the incarnation to go preach the gospel and ignore the fact that people are hungry and thirsty and naked and homeless. We are to do both.

METAXAS: You have to realize that you’re speaking into a culture that in some cases is wildly ignorant, just amazingly, staggeringly ignorant of some things they should know. About four years ago, Dick Cavett, the former talk show host, walked into a Park Avenue bistro. Cavett is totally brilliant, knows everything there is to know about everything—except that he has lived in New York City since he left Yale in the late ’50s, so he has been part of the epicenter of secular culture. In the back of the bistro there’s Father Rutler, a Catholic priest and a true intellectual. I think, “This is the Lord!” because I would love to introduce Dick Cavett to this guy. So we go sit with him and Dick Cavett turns to Father Rutler: “I’ve got a question for you, Father. Where does the Golden Rule come from?”

Father Rutler is so smart that he thinks Dick Cavett is asking him some deep theological question. He thought there was no way that someone could not know that Jesus said the Golden Rule. But Dick Cavett is the poster boy for people who seem to know everything—but in Manhattan most people are absurdly ignorant of the things that evangelicals know incredibly well.  If you want to reach the world with the gospel, move to New York City.

LAND: If you showed American television to a sociologist, they would be hard pressed to conclude that 61 percent of Americans say that religion is a very important part of their lives. It just wouldn’t compute, given our sitcoms and films.

METAXAS: And the 12-year-old girl in Topeka goes up to her room and turns on her TV and effectively gets the worldview of Hugh Hefner and Baywatch. If the invisible hand of the market were working when it comes to media, a third of every sitcom, talk show, and movie that you watch would come from the perspective of conservative, evangelical Christians. But somehow the market isn’t working, because we have been out of the game for 50 or so years.

LAND: When Muslims come to America and get out of New York City and Washington and go into the real country and see people who are actually religious, it stuns them. I’ve talked to some Cuban Christians who are very ambivalent about the ending of the embargo, because they say that if the embargo ends, a lot of what will come into their country from America will be very harmful to their families and their faith. . . . We do need to do a better job. We desperately need Christians to engage the media.

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Talking with Woody Allen

LAND: I’m a Woody Allen fan. Woody Allen movies come to Nashville three weeks after they’re released, and they stay there for one week at one theater, so all of us who like Woody Allen know each other. I think people will be watching Woody Allen films a hundred years from now to figure out how a particularly influential subset of American culture lived and what they were like in the late 20th and early 21st century. Woody asks all the right questions; he just doesn’t have any answers. His central question is, “If God doesn’t exist, what meaning does life have?”

METAXAS: In a number of his movies it’s as if it’s the gospel — [only] without the ending. He makes you see that life without God is agony, it’s undoable.

WORLD: If you were sitting next to Woody Allen on a plane, what would you say to him?

METAXAS: I have to somehow figure out how to connect with him. . . . If you come across as morally superior, that’s unbiblical, that’s wrong, it’s a lie, so you’re confused. But also you’ll push the person away. You’ve got to find a point of connection, otherwise they won’t hear you. If you walk around New York you might see someone, semi-homeless, almost always from out of town, with a hat and a Bible “preaching the word” on the street. Nine times out of 10 they are not preaching the Word any more than Satan was when he was quoting the Bible to Jesus in the wilderness. The words are not magic. Some people will respond, “The word of God will not return void,” and yes, the capital-w Word of God, the Logos, will not return void—but the words of the Bible can certainly return void unless they’re anointed by the Holy Spirit. Many people think that if they just spew out Scripture or something that people are hearing them, but it’s not true. Jesus never did that. He always connected with everyone around him.

LAND: I would say make a connection with him as a person. I would start with his movies and tell him how much his movies had meant to me and spoken to me as a human being. It’s very clear that he’s a very vulnerable man; he does have no hope, and he’s very disturbed by having no hope.

METAXAS: He should be, but there are a lot of people who just float through life. The thing about somebody like Woody Allen is that he has thought this through and he sees the bleakness of it. A lot of people haven’t thought it through; they’re not logical. Logic is good.

— Marvin Olasky

Copyright © 2009 WORLD Magazine
Articles may not be reproduced without permission
August 01, 2009, Vol. 24, No. 15

To read this article in its original format, go to www.worldmag.com.

Healthcare #2: You Can’t Legislate Love

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 07/05/09 under Media Video

FoxNewsChannel’s THE STRATEGY ROOM.  Eric Metaxas with Lauren Green. YouTube Preview Image

Obama and Doris Day at Notre Dame

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 04/28/09 under Blog

The media’s perennial difficulty in covering religion has been well-documented at www.getreligion.org — but it’s never been quite as funny or ridiculous as it is here, in this www.getreligion.org story about Obama’s invitation to speak at Notre Dame… As G.K. Chesterton — or perhaps it was legal scholar Mary Ann Glendon — once said: “Que Sera, Sera!” [Music up and out]

John Wilson, in First Things

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Published by Eric Metaxas on 11/11/08 under Media Press Reviews Uncategorized

“And no Christmas list would be complete without a lullaby book. It’s Time to Sleep, My Love, written by Eric Metaxas and illustrated by Nancy Tillman is a ravishingly beautiful volume that my wife and I will be giving to our grandchildren. (We plan to get a back-up copy to keep in readiness for visitors.) “You are loved,” it says, and neither irony nor absurdity nor the most bitter pain puts a dent in that sentiment, which mysteriously undergirds the universe.”

John Wilson, “Wrapping Up 2008″ in the current issue of First Things.