Catching Up

2.-Writing-furiouslyby John Ellis

It has been almost two weeks since I’ve published anything on this blog. However, that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been publishing articles at all; the two things are connected.

Two weeks ago, I was given a promotion, of sorts, at PJ Media. On top of my eight to twelve regular articles a month, I am now tasked with writing ten short-ish, news-type articles for the Faith section. It’s been quite an adjustment to my schedule (it’s also come at a time when my pastor has given me more responsibilities in my job as a staff member at my church).

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How to Grow Your Social Media Presence Among Ex-Fundies

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by John Ellis

The two lists that follows are somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but they do express a growing concern of mine. In the two lists, I’m using the tag “ex-fundies” as shorthand and not necessarily as a pejorative. Several years ago, I wrote a few articles about “new legalists.”[1] My use of “ex-fundies” here is not a synonym with my past use of “new legalists.” Although, I am concerned that many of those who were raised in BJU-styled fundamentalism are in danger of moving into the “new legalist” camp. That concern is why I’m writing this.

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Conservative Evangelicals and Fundamentalists Should Embrace Our Unity in Christ

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by John Ellis

My pastor likes to good-naturedly tease me that I’m the resident fundamentalist at our conservative evangelical church. While joking, my pastor is not incorrect. However, I would add that he, too, is a fundamentalist. In fact, I would count the majority of my brothers and sisters in Christ at our church as fundamentalists. Many of them may not like the term, but it’s true nonetheless[1]. Our reformed, Southern Baptist, IX Marks affiliated, conservative evangelical church is filled with fundamentalists for the glory of God. We may not believe that going to the movie theatre is sinful, nor do we believe that rock music is necessarily out of bounds for Christians, but that doesn’t make the label of fundamentalists less valid for us. And our church may allow a man with long hair (me) to teach Sunday School and even occasionally preach, but, make no mistake, we are fundamentalists.

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Bob Jones University, Abercrombie & Fitch, and PJ Media

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by John Ellis

This month marks a year since I was hired as a staff writer for PJ Media. For those who are unfamiliar with PJ Media, the website is a medium sized political news and opinion site – from a deeply conservative perspective, to be clear. Over the last couple of years, the site has expanded to include Faith, Lifestyle, and Parenting sections. I was initially hired to write for the Faith and Lifestyle sections, but over the last year, I have been given the opportunity to branch out and write about politics and parenting, too.

But what does my time with PJ Media have to do with Bob Jones University and Abercrombie & Fitch (which is probably the reason the majority of the readers clicked on this article to begin with)? Well, change. Specifically, change in me.

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Public Speaking and the Pulpit

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by John Ellis

At the beginning of my acting career, I was embarrassed to have Bob Jones University plastered on my resume. I was afraid that I would be labeled a Christian or, worse, a fundamentalist Christian at that. Needless to say, the world of theatre and the world of conservative Christianity are often at odds. But, being on the front end of my acting career, I didn’t really have the luxury of removing things from my already meager resume.

Several weeks into rehearsals for my first Shakespeare production, I cautiously asked the director why he had taken a risk on me. At the time of the audition, I was a complete unknown to the theatre and yet ended up with one of the largest roles in the play. Without missing a beat, the director replied, “Because you went to Bob Jones University.”

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