Worthwhile Organizations

October 2007

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Brave Saint Saturn

  • Brave Saint Saturn -

    Brave Saint Saturn: The Light of Things Hoped For

    Possibly the most compelling and well-executed album I have ever listened to, "The Light of Things Hoped For" by Brave Saint Saturn deserves its five-star rating. The concept album, which happens to be the second installment from BS2, continues to follow the USS Gloria on its mission to study Saturn and its moons. Stylistically, this project from Reese Roper and other members of Five Iron Frenzy (R.I.P.) very nearly defies description. They have been referred to as space-pop or astro-rock, though even these monikers do not do the style justice. Some of the songs on the album are simple acoustic ballads, while others make use of synthesizers, xylophones, and other instruments that are too often neglected by rock bands. Lyrically, BS2 hits a homerun with this album, with songs like "The Sun Also Rises," "Heart Still Beats," and "Daylight" giving testimony to their Christianity, and "Enamel," "Anastasia," and "Babies' Breath" speaking of love, and love lost. Brave Saint Saturn is an unorthodox band, nearly unknown in the mainstream and censored by their former label Tooth and Nail Records, but none of this detracts in the least from the stellar quality (no pun intended) of their latest album. The album is unavailable on iTunes, and only partially available on most other music downloading services, but it is well worth the price and shipping costs to order the cd from vendors online. Check out Brave Saint Saturn's "The Light of Things Hoped For" today! (*****)


  • Roper: Brace Yourself for the Mediocre
    "Brace Yourself for the Mediocre," is the first (and possibly only) album by Roper, the latest band started by Five Iron Frenzy and Brave Saint Saturn frontman Reese Roper. With Reese's characteristic high vocals, a bouncy pop-punk sound that resembles Five Iron Frenzy on speed (and with synthesizers instead of horns), and the intelligent lyrics that Reese can't seem to help writing, Roper's new album was made to be great. From start to finish, the album refuses to slow down, turning out one smart pop-punk anthem after another throughout the entire thirteen-song album. Whether the song involves social and religious commentary (e.g. "Quicksilver," "Hello Lamewads") or is just a playful exercise for Reese's tongue-in-cheek sense of humor (e.g. "Vendetta," "1985"), it's sure to be stuck in your head for a long time to come. (*****)


  • Showbread -

    Showbread: No Sir, Nihilism Is Not Practical
    It's spastic, it's chaotic, and it's a masterpiece through and through. In No Sir, Nihilism Is Not Practical, Showbread struck a power chord with even this opponent of screamo. Think before you buy, for this album is not for the faint of heart, but if you can handle a seizurrific combination of screams and industrial-strength keytar, then this album is worth the money. Every song on the album is great for those who are tolerant of screamo or are looking to try something new, but even those of more sensitive tastes can appreciate songs like "Matthias Replaces Judas," (which by the way, features a guest appearance from Reese Roper). As an album, "No Sir..." stands in its disjointedness as a cohesive whole, and is a great investment... for those who can handle it, anyway. (*****)

  • Showbread -

    Showbread: Age of Reptiles
    "Age of Reptiles," Showbread's latest release, proves to be quite a departure from their previous spaz-rock album "No Sir, Nihilism Is not Practical." There is less screaming in the new album, and more straight-up alternative rock, perhaps to appease the faint of heart who no doubt went into cardiac arrest upon hearing music from Showbread's first album. Regardless, "Age of Reptiles" is a strong showing from the "raw rock" band, as they prove that they are not as one-dimensional as reviewers might have feared after the release of "No Sir..." A bit too polished at times, "Reptiles" still hits the mark on almost every song, and accomplishes something that "No Sir" did not... It plays songs melodically enough that listeners can sing along. (****)

Relient K

  • Relient K -

    Relient K: MMHMM
    As Relient K matures, they continue to amaze listeners who thought they just couldn't get any better. Though the band certainly had a lot of spunk when they put out their earlier albums (all the way through "The Anatomy of Tongue in Cheek"), they didn't to strike gold until their release of MMHMM, a lyrically and musically mature album with a pop-punk-done-right sound. Certainly an album that is worth the buy. (****)

  • Relient K -

    Relient K: Apathetic EP
    Relient K's latest work, the Apathetic EP, is just a continuation of this band's prolonged stroke of genius. Continuing the line of thought that produced "MMHMM," the Apathetic EP gives us four new songs (two electric, two involving Matt Thiessen and his piano) and three acoustic versions of previous songs ("Be My Escape," "Which to Bury, Us or the Hatchet," and "Over Thinking"), all of which add up to a great EP to whet the appetite of fans waiting to see what this band will think of next. (bonus: The band also released an acoustic version of "Who I Am Hates Who I've Been" apart from the Apathetic EP, and it makes a great buy off of iTunes as well.) (****)

  • Relient K -

    Relient K: Five Score and Seven Years Ago

    How embarrassing. After at the very least two amazing albums and an EP, Relient K ends their streak of great music by popping out this monstrosity. The only words that come to mind after listening to this album several times are "What were they THINKING?!" The hooks are tired, the lyrics are uninspired, and the album is entirely disappointing. Even the potentially epic ballad "Deathbed" descends into preachy inanity by the second half of the song, though its first five and a half minutes are worth a listen. Do yourself a favor and don't waste your money on this album: Instead, head over to iTunes and spend a few bucks on the highlights of the album (which are shamefully few) "Faking My Own Suicide," "Deathbed," "Come Right Out and Say It," and depending on your tolerance level for the poppish, "Must Have Done Something Right." I know it's hard, but if you love Relient K, it's probably best that you not listen to the rest of the album; just wait it out, surely they'll return to their former glory on their next CD... Right? (**)


  • Emery -

    Emery: The Weak's End
    There is only one word to describe Emery's first major release: Tiresome. The Weak's End, an album with a very nice title and a great opening track, simply fails to deliver throughout the rest of the cd. Starting out with "Walls," which is perhaps Emery's best song to date, the album eventually descends into a mass of songs that are at best boring, and at worst downright frustrating. The first 2-4 songs on "The Weak's End" are in fact rather catchy, and certainly worth a listen (or a buy off of iTunes), but the entire album is a bit disappointing, with songs that run together or sound very much the same, and music which makes the listener dread reading the lyrics, for fear that they are as inane as the chord progressions and throbbing post-######## beat. Emery does in fact have a great deal of potential, but aside from "Walls" and "A Ponytail Parade," they did not at all reach it on "The Weak's End." (**)

Number One Gun

  • Number One Gun -

    Number One Gun: Promises for the Imperfect
    A little bit emo, a little bit rock and roll, Number One Gun pulls out a mediocre showing with their latest album "Promises for the Imperfect." The album starts off strong, with four or five catchy songs, but then falls off into the abyss of musical and lyrical cliches. The first half of the album, though, is great, and well worth buying off of iTunes (or whatever legal music downloading service you choose). Check them out today! (***)


  • :
    eLi is quite simply a talented musician. Most of his music is acoustic, and his songs very personal, often dealing with past experiences, persevering in the face of opposition, or simply comfort in the midst of a storm. Even if you don't like acoustic/folk music, don't count eLi out until you've given him a chance.


  • Eleventyseven -

    Eleventyseven: Eleventyseven and the Land of Fake Believe
    Eleventyseven's breakout album is nothing but fun. And that's pretty much it. Oh, I guess I should say more... But what is there to say about a band this crazy? They call themselves "Eleventyseven," a made-up number, and their most popular band t-shirt bears the slogan "Save the Unicorns!" How on earth could anyone take this band seriously? Well... you don't really need to. Sure, they're a little on the crazy side, but they're just out to have fun. To the band's credit, they are capable of writing serious songs, such as "MySpace," "Teenage Heartbreak" and "More Than a Revolution" in addition to typical (though catchy) pop-punk songs about breaking up and making up. While this synth-punk band really breaks no new ground musically or lyrically, they have a kind of energy that will serve them well as they grow. Eleventyseven's live show is wild and entertaining, and the band's music manages to stay focused on things more important than the teen angst that marks so many similar bands. Their album is worth looking into if you're a pop-punk fan in need of some good, light-hearted fun. (***)

« Dear Christians | Main | Oh No... Libertarianism! Run! »

October 16, 2006


David Ketter

1) Marriage is not a "Christian" concept.

Note that marriage was instituted in the Creation ordinance. It existed before man was fallen and continued despite man's need for redemption.

2) Marriage is not defined by society.

Creation has a natural order and the idea of the male/female togetherness is inherent in nature. Besides that is the obvious social complement that occurs.

3) Marriage is a universal institution, not a religious idea. Again, marriage pre-dates the whole concept of redemption, sin, and consummation of Creation. It's a fundamental aspect of man's existence.


Well, so I had this nice little reply that turned into something akin to an essay. Since it's so long I had to post it in my blog. That's just sad. I can't even tell you if my post has anything to do with you said, I got so absorbed in writing my thoughts. But since it was started by your post, I will link it to you. Please check it out. (You don't have to comment though. ;) )
My post you inspired!

Jacob Thrasher


I agree with your points completely; I would never make the argument that marriage could include anything but one man and one woman. However, this is a concept that, while not necessarily Christian, was instituted by the Christian God before the foundation of Christianity. So then, I am still left wondering if we can expect a non-Christian government which affords certain rights to married couples to refuse some non-Christians the "right" to be married in its eyes. Yes, it's true that that marriage won't be valid in God's eyes, but neither the state nor the people applying for marriage care what God has to say about it.

And furthermore, would it not be counterproductive to try to force non-Christians, via legislation or any other means, to adhere to God's Law? Since, after all, their actions regarding marriage are not what will eternally save or condemn them...

Again, I don't really know where I stand on this, but I'm just putting a point of view that sorta makes sense to me out there for you to evaluate.

And Draw2much,

I liked your post :-)

I will say to you as well that I'm not claiming that homosexual marriages can really be marriages. I am, however, wondering just to what extent we can expect our government to enforce the "universal truth" of marriage. Many homosexuals don't really care about that "universal truth" or the God who instituted it... they just want to be recognized as a couple by the state. Now, I would say that the government has no jurisdiction over whether or not a marriage is valid in the eyes of God, or in the eyes of the church, and yet it treats married couples differently from unmarried ones... So logically, shouldn't the government have its own form of "marriage," a "civil union" that operates independently of marriage in God's eyes? Because I'm still wondering if we can expect non-Christians or the government to respect an institution put in place by a God whose existence they don't recognize.

Stephen Lewis

Marriage is not defined by society.

If that be the case, how would you explain societal/state laws regulating the eligibility of married couples according to age, consent, and so on? Society certainly does define marriage, as a glimpse at historical/cultural shifts reveals. What would be considered “marriage” in Biblical times would be punished as statutory rape today…

Further, the appeal to a “natural order” fails on the count that, post-Fall, nature is also fallen. Marriage, as an aspect of “natural order”, is not exempt. To be sure, Biblical principles of marriage are redeemed from the Fall, but that is not the same as claiming that marriage as a “non-Christian” (supra-Christian?), “universal” institution has remained pure.


Neo, That blurb about "gay marriage" wasn't aimed at you. That was me just thinking through my position.

I think civil unions might be a very good idea. Like I said, the government has nothing to do with making a marriage. So if it thinks it'd be easier to have civil unions than so be it. It's not like they're gonna change what marriage really is anyway. And a neutral approach might be better.

Oh, and just so ya know, I think marriage IS influenced by society. Depending on the religion and culture, society will tailor marriage to fit it's beliefs.

I do NOT, however, think society makes marriage. To me it's the other way around. Marriage came first, then society. So changing a populations defination of marriage too much can be kinda dangerous. It risks destroying the very foundation that society is based on.


Oh, and I don't think I approve of the government treating married couples differently [for tax purposes]. But then, I disapprove of how our government currently does taxes anyway. ;)

David Thrasher

Ditto to David, Stephen, and most of the post by D2M.
The assumption that our government is atheist is only true if the vast majority of the people (by the people, for the people, etc.) are. This is not true, 30 years of supreme court activism not-withstanding.
To condone same sex civil unions by official government recognition is wrong for many reasons. It is akin to the argument that some make for legalizing illicit drug use.
It is a further erosion of the moral standards that together have worked in concert to help our society become the foremost shining light in the world. If you doubt that we are that light, then check statistics on immigration, both legal and illegal. We're certainly not actively recruiting, yet millions want to be here.
If the state that I and many other Christians support with our taxes and allegiance, sanctions such unions, then that state is no longer acting as my representative in good faith.
The reasons for society to discourage homosexual behavior are myriad, simply from a public health standpoint. Spiritual issues don't even have to enter in for this to be true. The facts are plentiful, even though they are not trumpeted by media (as they would be if they shed favorable light on "alternative lifestyles").
Witness any reputable study of mental health and physical health as it pertains to aformentioned alternative lifestyles.
AIDS would never have burst forth as the scourge it is today without the profligate sexual behavior rampant in the gay community. See this and many other sources if you doubt this. http://fohn.net/history-of-aids/
the disease indeed existed for many years prior to 1981, but it couldn't spread without the behavior common in the gay lifestyle. It was even initially known as GRID (Gay-Related Immune Deficiency).
Enough on that topic.
Certainly, we as a country condone and sanction many things that are immoral and detrimental to the overal wellness of society(murdering unborn children, propping up third world despots, no-fault divorce, (and the list goes on)), but to add sanction of homosexual civil unions to that list is not a step in the right direction.

David T.

Upon further reflection of the things you stated in your post, the bigger issue you raise is: "Should we, as Christians, be politically neutral, or politically active?".
I don't have time to elaborate right now, but I'll just throw in my gut response for now:
I believe we are called, as part of the stewardship we are given over our lives, to try and have a positive impact on society. One method that works in this direction is political activism.

Nathan Knapp

Excellent post, Jacob. You're asking good questions; and I think it's good to wage war upon habit now and again, if only to encourage a fresh outlook on things. With all the great comments that have been left, I don't feel like I have mcuh to add. Anyway... back to Biology.


Not a whole lot to add here, but we must remember, a lot of the laws we have now are ultimately based on God's laws. I mean, well, they used to be- now they're kinda getting skewered.

But I digress - God put laws in order for both reasons, I believe: to curb man's sinful nature and also to bring us to salvation. They are not just "Christian" laws, they are the absolute moral laws of the universe.

So...yeah. But I do agree that we should not just focus on making people be "good," but be concerned about their spiritual state. After all, you can make a rotten apple look good on the outside by candy coating it, but the inside will still be rotten.

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God put laws in order for both reasons, I believe: to curb man's sinful nature and also to bring us to salvation.


The community's insistence on the old definition of Christian marriage is inextricably linked to the eagerness of the Church to retain its numbers. the reason why the government appoints marriage commissioners is to provide a secular alternative to religious marriages for those couples who wish to marry but who either cannot satisfy the eligibility criteria of faith groups or do not wish to have a religious wedding ceremony.

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