The American Jesus Madness 2013 bracket is out. It's irreverent; it's timely; and it's loads of fun. Before I reveal my first-round picks, I have to say that I'm disappointed that Darkwood Brew and Wildgoose Festival aren't in the playoffs. Maybe next year.
Okay, here we go!
Tim Tebow vs. Ray Lewis
Tebow can't pass, and Lewis is overrated. But my pick has nothing to do with football. Tebow canceled his speech/sermon at that gay-hating church, while Lewis thinks Psalm 91 is plural. Tebow for the win.
#RickWarrenTips vs. Mark Driscoll Tweets
Mark Driscoll says things that are so vile, that I will never vote for him to win anything. So I've got to root for #RickWarrenTips. Can't explain all the reasons here. (Like no one else blogging about the brackets will say that tag line. It's gold, baby!)
Scot McKnight vs. Albert Mohler
I follow McKnight's blog. He's more evanglical-ish than I am (which is not at all!), but I enjoy reading him most of the time. Albert Mohler, on the other hand, never ever ever says anything I could possibly advocate. I even Googled "Albert Mohler says something kind" just to see if there was anything, and nope. Nada. I'm writing Scot McKnight's name in my bracket.
Pope Benedict XVI vs. The Next Pope
The Next Pope is now The New Pope, who has the disadvantage of not looking like Emperor Palpatine, but he does have the advantage of being accused of being involved in the kidnapping and five-month torture of two priests in his diocese who leaned toward liberation theology. Innocent-looking evil wins over evil-looking evil every time. The Next Pope.
Mark Driscoll vs. Christian Humility
I'm not sure why Mark Driscoll gets in here twice. Maybe his tweets are sublimely Driscoll-esque or something. No clue. It's interesting that Christian humility should compete for something. "Look at me! I'm Christian humility, and I beat Mark Driscoll!" But I'm voting for Christian humility anyway. I hope Christian humility kicks Driscoll's ass!
Joel Osteen's Smile vs. Joel Osteen's Mullet
Look, I had a mullet. Once. In the mid-80s. For a little while. But even Bono got rid of his. Eventually. Didn't he? Surely, he did. Anyway. I don't trust Osteen's smile, but the mullet has to lose.
History Channel's "The Bible" vs. "DJesus Uncrossed"
Despite the fact that Southpark did a better violent Jesus, I'm not too partial to depictions of myths as "history." Besides, if you vote the wrong way, DJesus will kill you.
Mark Sandlin vs. Justin Lee
I follow Mark Sandlin and his blog The God Article. Good stuff. On the other hand, I had to Google Justin Lee to see who he is. I recognize his pic, and it looks like he does good stuff, too. But it has to be Sandlin.
Rachel Held Evans vs. Biblical Womanhood
Not only can RHE beat biblical womanhood in this bracket, she beat biblical womanhood every day for a year. Evans, hands down.
Peter Enns vs. Ken Ham
Peter Enns does not believe in a historical Adam. (Neither do I.) That means he does not believe that human beings rode dinosaurs. That's no fun, at all. But Ken Ham now claims he doesn't believe humans rode dinosaurs, even though this is in one of his books. So I'm bummed about not getting to vote for someone who believes that humans rode dinosaurs. But, since Peter Enns and I are in touch with the same reality, whereas Ken Ham is crazy, I'll have to vote for Enns. Reality wins! (I hope. Please let reality win this time.)
Hobby Lobby vs. Chick-Fil-A
Hmm, should I vote for those who beat down those sinner heterosexuals or those who beat down those sinner homosexuals? American Jesus Madness, you have indeed put me in a dilemma. (Mmmmmmmm, chicken!) Chick-Fil-A wins. I feel so dirty.
Rob Bell's New Tan vs. Rob Bell's Missing Glasses
Don't care. God loves both his new tan and his missing glasses equally. Flipped a coin. Rob Bell's Missing Glasses it is.
The Gospel Coalition vs. Homebrewed Christianity
I don't know anything about the Gospel Coalition. It's like Justin Lee. I can't know everything nerdy and theological. But I do know Homebrewed Christianity. They are featured prominently in every issue of my Emerging & Progressive Christianity newspaper. Just this past issue Tripp Fuller was in it four times: 1) "tripp drinking a Straight Up Saison on Untappd," 2) "tripp drinking a Saison d'Epeautre on Untappd," 3) "tripp drinking a Dasein on Untappd," and 4) "tripp drinking a Dead Guy Ale on Untappd." Anybody who can drink that much and still say "ontological difference" without slurring, gets my vote every time.
Ann Voskamp vs. Tim Challies
I have no idea who either of these people are. I'm voting for the woman. I don't care what the conservatives on the Supreme Court think about Affirmative Action. Ann Voskamp gets the vote. (Oh, God! I just Googled her and went to her website. The automatic music on that site is awful! Then I found and went to Challies's web site, where his latest blog post looks very interesting. I wish I had done this before submitting my official bracket. Maybe Affirmative Action is wrong. I'm so confused.)
John Piper vs. Christian Decency
"Jesus doesn't love everybody the same way" (John Piper). 'Nuff said. Christian Decency for the win.
Tony Jones vs. Stephanie Drury
I'm voting for Tony because he's a man! Affirmative Action will not get the best of me this time. Where are all the women on my blog? And where are all the men? Nobody ever reads my blog. Could I be both misogynistic and misanthropic? Or just boring? *sigh*
So there you have it, folks. My picks for Round One of American Jesus Madness 2013. What are your picks?
Update: It was late when I first posted this, and I left out the Popes, the Bible, and DJesus, just what my conservative friends say I do all the time. I've corrected that in this post, but not yet in my life in general.