La Tey & Pltypus went for Doctor Ben's talks in SIN the past few nights. They found it so comedic that they were literally rolling on the pews. Nearly everything Doctor Ben said surprised some SIN fundies who've been so comfortable with their "laundry-list" of belief-items and thinking that those represent the "majority beliefs" of all Christians worldwide from the time of the Apostles onwards! I bet they were shocked out of their senses to discover that the immortality of the soul was a Graeco-Roman concept, resurrection did no exist in pre-exilic Judaic religion, hell (the beloved pet doctrine of fundies) is actually quite unbiblical and dispensationalism is actually a hoax! I regret that I was not able to join my pals there for the talks (and laughters, gasps, shocked looks, etc.) but I could hear La Tey's laughter all the way here in KUL. Pltypus was cool as usual and was busy theorizing about some Ellis-inspired idea that the God exists in the part of the brain that is damaged. I was told that the Methodist Bishop was in attendance and some 30-year retired pastor (who is now re-retired) was trying a little too hard (with all the gusto and spittle that is so characteristic of SIN fundies) to shoot down Doctor Ben's debunking of the dispensationalism hoax. I can also imagine that pastor's cronies frantically flipping through their handbooks to try to disprove Doctor Ben's dangerous ideas!.
For those who missed Doctor Ben's talks, do check out his blogs. This guy is a Marvel-geek (unlike the B.Sc.(Hons) people who look down on comic-geeks). He's therefore a living proof that the reading of theological texts require also a generous sampling of comic-fantasy in order for one to retain a semblance of humanity. Aside from that, Doctor Ben also has a sense of humour - maybe that's why SIN fundies are not too comfortable with him but in view of the man's string of PhDs., they didn't dare to "anathemize" him is all! [Having said that, La Tey also thinks that Doctor Ben is reptilian because he's descended from British royal lines or something like that. I'd really like to read La Tey's account of the talks and his evaluation of the ideas presented - hopefully in a soon-to-come blog entry.....]
"But surely you're not suggesting that Dispensationalism is not Biblical?"
"Actually, that is precisely what I'm suggesting. Dispensationalism was an invention of men such as John Nelson Darby and later popularized by Cyrus Ingersoll Scofield, Dwight Lyman Moody and Lewis Sperry Chafer. By the way, my name is not Shirley!"
"But surely you realize that the Dispensational Pre-Tribulational Rapture teaching represents the majority view of Protestant Evangelical theologians?"
"Not true. It is in fact the minority view of a select corner among Protestant Evangelicalism. While there are a number of my esteemed colleagues who are of the Dispensational-persuasion, I'd wager to say that their numbers are, in fact, dwindling. In the US and UK, where I speak very frequently, there are about as many different eschatological positions - of which Dispensational Pre-Tribulational Rapture is but one - as there are different flavours of Baskin Robbins' Ice-Cream! Alas, the situation here is Singapore is rather different as the people here suffer from a lack of available options. And, once more, please stop calling me Shirley!!!"
* The above exchanges are entirely fictional but I presume they are not too different from what actually transpired during the talks that Doctor Ben gave over the past several nights in SIN.