Saturday, March 13, 2010

iMonk Update

Michael Spencer, aka the Internet Monk has been given six months to a year to live, according to his wife, Denise, in a recent post. His cancer is too advanced and aggressive to expect a remission. He hasn't posted on his blog in a few months now, and I wonder whether he will again.

I must admit that I am fairly speechless about this revelation. I simply don't know what to say. I've never met Michael Spencer, but I have read his blog for several years, and commented there as I got to understand his message. We've had several email exchanges which surrounded a completely unexpected occasion. One day, there was a personal email in my inbox from Michael announcing that he had been reading my blog for a while and was a fan of my writing. He invited me to be a guest blogger at Internet Monk, posting something once a month or so. I was excited and deeply humbled at the same time.

I've only made one post there, as my own situation over this last year just hadn't seemed to allow that certain "groove" necessary for me to be in to write a second one. I started a few things, but never finished. So it is with a bitter reality - a shocking one - that I received the news. It's like I was on the cusp of entering somebody else's world, yet never making it quite in, then having that world close. Of course, my stake in the matter isn't what's the most important, it's just the only part of it that I've experienced.

I hope nothing but the best for the Spencer family, and short of "that miracle" that probably won't come, I know that he has family and friends that will be able to help him through to the end. Michael's writings have had a pronounced effect on my views of the evangelical church and its people, and I hope to highlight some of that here in the near future.


  1. I'm thinking I found you via that guest post at Imonk. It was a shock, a "knife in the gut", to read of his prognosis, although I, too, know him only through that site, a journey that takes me back about eight years. We did not always agree, but always I heard him with respect for what he said....

  2. I sure do hope and pray that best comes his way in these next few months - even healing if that is a possibility.

    Nonetheles, the way you speak of this man's writings - I sure hope they get the respect they deserve...maybe I'll even help out and post a few (I will need to check out his site).

  3. Hi, Steve,

    Like others, I found your blog from your internetmonk guest post last year.

    Your "Re-thinking Romans 13" series interested me and I just skimmed through it again. It's a chapter that I usually read with the Declaration of Independence every July 4th, trying to reconcile the two. I agree that it's one of the most mis-used parts of the bible (even commandeered by the atheist Soviet Union to subdue believers!).

    I'm not sure I agree that it has "nothing whatsoever to do with obeying civil government" but I do agree that Paul wasn't turning over authority from God to Caesar. In fact, if we count up the times Paul says that rulers are "God's servant" or that they "hold no terror" we start to get a picture of irony. He mentions this several times, and did so in the age of Herod the Great and Nero. I think Paul may have been offering a "loophole" to the "submission" that he preached, if rulers do terrorize or don't act like God's servants. And you're right, Paul is also reminding rulers that they are placed there by God and are accountable to Him. A lot of people don't get that nuance.

    I'm also lamenting Michael Spencer's illness and am praying for a speedy transition to something better, all in the Lord's will.

    Keep up the good work.