2009 SBC Voices BLOG MADNESS: Final

After 2 weeks of intense competition, the field is down to four. At stake is bragging rights and a $313 gift card to Westminster Books via email. This prize was donated by my children’s ministry website (check out my Vacation Bible School articles)and earned via the Westminster blog partners.

Blog Madness ended Monday 6 April 2009 – scroll down to see final results or just read the “see who won” post.

2009 Blog Madness Final Four

  1. Internetmonk.com (Michael Spencer)
    Round 1 Votes: 633
    Round 2 Votes: 593
    Original Seeding: 1
    Technorati Authority: 753
  2. Church Matters (9Marks Blog)
    Round 1 Votes: 462
    Round 2 Votes: 380
    Original Seeding: 1
    Technorati Authority: 300
  3. Confessions of a Pastor (Hershael York)
    Round 1 Votes: 226
    Round 2 Votes: 348
    Original Seeding: 12
    Technorati Authority: 23
  4. ALVINREID.com
    Round 1 Votes: 272
    Round 2 Votes: 233
    Original Seeding: 9
    Technorati Authority: 18

[poll id=”26″]

Something To Think About

  • None of the 2008 final four made it back.
  • There were 7,557 total votes cast in Rounds 1 & 2
  • 2 Seminary professors made the final four (York & Reid)
  • add your observations below

Want more Madness? Check out 2008 round onesweat sixteen, and final four. Or relive the 2009 selection process, round 1, and round 2. You can also read the inspiration for blog madness from Les Puryear (here in 2008) (here in 2007) and Said At Southern.

Share Your Punditry

Feel free to use the comment section to talk smack, make excuses, or support your favorite blog.


  1. Bryan says

    I do appreciate some of his posts, but to put it mildly it would be a shame to see the “most popular” SBC blog (at least WRT this vote) be one that belongs to a man who doesn’t think that Southern Baptists should evangelize Roman Catholics.

    I didn’t realize that evangelizing Catholics (any more than we are to evangelize Anglicans, Orthodox, Lutherans, etc.) was an essential tenet of Baptists. Learn something new every day.

  2. says

    After talking with some Baptist Identity guys, I’ve been thinking about adding the following guidelines for SBC Voices blog madness. Qualified voters will answer “yes” to at least 5 of the following:

    • Do you use the HCSB or KJV?
    • Do you agree with the doctrine of hairology?
    • Have you attended SBC meetings at every level (associational, state, national)?
    • Have you always been careful to spit out your Listerine?
    • Do you walk the church aisle at least once per calendar year?
    • Did you come to Christ during a VBS or church camp?
  3. Morgan Johnson says


    Funny, I was a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ when I was a Catholic, and when I left them to become a Baptist guess what? I was already saved and washed in the blood. I’m confused by your comment.

  4. Bryan says

    I was objecting to the idea that Catholics are already saved and thus don’t need to be evangelized.

    Is the official doctrinal position of the SBC that Catholics, de facto, are not saved and thus need to be evangelized moreso than members of other Christian denominations? Because if it is, I’m having a very hard time finding any reference to it in the resolutions of the yearly SBC meetings or anywhere on the SBC.com website.

  5. iMonk says

    Thanks Chris. You got me to thinking:

    Ten Even Better Reasons Not To Vote For the Internet Monk

    1) After being SBC for 37 years (baptized at 15), you’d think he would have won at least one Bible drill.
    2) He has not attended Church Training for decades.
    3) His wife often altered the regular convention Sunday School material for use in her class.
    4) He once had a rather large balance on his old Baptist Book Store charge account.
    5) He has shown the Super Bowl during a Sunday Night Service.
    6) He recently nodded off during a business meeting.
    7) After doing a Mountain Missions Conference Bible Study, a DOM said “You like to be provocative.”
    8) Really like the VBS “sit down” chord.
    9) Still opposes mixed bathing.
    10) Refused to sing “God of Earth and Outer Space” out of the 1973 Hymnal.

    For more….write me.

    Again, thanks Chris. You’re a good man.

  6. says

    Wait, must one *currently* be a Southern Baptist in order to vote? What if I was once a Southern Baptist, but not now? What if I am not now a Southern Baptist, but someday will be?

    What if I’m a Southern Baptist, but not saved?

    Trevin, brilliant! Reminds me why I voted for you until this round. In fact, two of the folks I voted for are still in it, so now I have to drop one. :-(

    Phillip Winns last blog post..Live Well In Less Space

  7. says

    @Trevin–All need to be evangelized, no question, including a great many Baptists. The gospel also needs to be preached to sinner and saint alike.

    @Morgan The idea that those who consistently follow Rome’s teachings aren’t in peril is what I was noting. Why did you come out of the RCC and become a Baptist? Was it mere personal preference, or some other reason?

    Anyone who believes that Rome preaches justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone is either ignorant or simply mistaken. I do believe that a Romanist can be saved, but it is in spite of his communion’s teachings, not because of them. Any “Great Commission Resurgence” that doesn’t take this into account isn’t a resurgence at all, but rather a Down Grade. At this point I’m persuaded that most if not all besides iMonk who favor a GCR would not agree with him on this issue.

    Chris Poes last blog post..Dr. Bart Barber on “Ecumenists of the Mouth, Sectarians of the Heart”

  8. Bill says

    iMonk? What’s that about? We know monks aren’t saved. Plus I heard he once wore a robe in church.

  9. says

    I voted for iMonk because:

    1. I’m a member of an “emergent” SBC church (this means we meet in an art gallery, have lots of young “hipster-looking” dudes involved with us, and have a musical style different enough from southern gospel that some folks lump us in with Pagitt and Co. 😉

    2. His top 10 lists are generally hilarious :)

    3. He’s a fellow Kentuckian. We have to stick up for our own.

    4. I never have to consult my Guide to Heresy when reading his articles to figure out what a Romanist is 😉

    5. The winnings will go to iMonk’s students. ’nuff said.

  10. Doug says

    Did iMonk ever actually say we shouldn’t evangelize them? Does he in fact evangelize them by presenting the Gospel with clarity on his blog? Or by having Catholics as his friends?

    I grew up in an SBC church, and I think it might be useful to consider what was taught there. “Justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone” wasn’t a big part of who we were theologically. Those would all have been affirmed (and of course it concerns me that the Catholic church wouldn’t affirm these things) but in practice, (which is much more important to a teenager) we didn’t believe these at all.
    We believed in justification by virginity through regular Bible reading (without too much thought, as that would be arrogant “head” knowledge, which most people and possibly ourselves had without actually being saved), and ratified by constant emotionally driven rededication to God. On the bright side, there was a ton of free pizza.

    I hope your church is different, Chris, I really do. Thankfully, there were a few men who came in towards the end of my high school days and really helped me out. Still, for many of us, the whole “We’re Gospel-centered and they’re not!” thing rings a bit hollow. I heard so much about what I needed to do, and so little about what Jesus had done.

    And it was iMonk’s writing that gave me permission to look at Jesus instead of myself for my salvation.

  11. says

    Refused to sing “God of Earth and Outer Space” out of the 1973 Hymnal

    Another reason I am proud that I voted for iMonk. That one comment almost cost me a computer monitor. How did that song ever get in the hymnal to begin with?

    Jeff Ms last blog post..Murderous Pride

  12. iMonk says

    We do hymn requests at our school’s chapel service. The students found this one and started requesting it. I would never sing it. Later, the student would disappear from their room and never be seen again.

    My Current Theories on the Origin of “God of Earth and Outer Space” appearing in the 1973 hymnal.

    1. Somebody had pictures of somebody.
    2. “My nephew is a composer.”
    3. “Maybe we can reach the Star Wars fan demographic.”
    4. Had to make a choice between that hymn and the VBS Sit Down Chord.
    5. Forever simplified the Jeopardy category “Worst Hymns.”

  13. says

    With the many references to this masterpiece, I just had to look it up. Apparently these are the lyrics:

    God of Earth and Outer Space!
    God of earth and outer space, God of love and God of grace,
    Bless the astronauts who fly as they soar beyond the sky;
    God who flung the stars in space, God who set the sun ablaze,
    Fling the spacecraft through the air, let man know Your presence there.

    God of atmosphere and air, God of life and planets bare,
    Use man’s courage and his skill as he seeks Your holy will;
    God of depth and God of height, God of darkness, God of light,
    As man walks in outerspace, teach him how to walk in grace.

    God of man’s exploring mind, God of wisdom, God of time,
    Launch us from complacency to a world in need of Thee;
    God of power, God of might, God of rockets firing bright,
    Hearts ignite and thrust within, love for Christ to share with men.

    God of earth and outerspace, God who guides the human race,
    Guide the lives of seeking youth in their search for heavenly truth;
    God who reigns below, above, God of universal love,
    Love that gave Nativity, love that gave us Calvary.

    Chris Poes last blog post..Why Baptism of Believers and Not Infants

  14. says

    Who or what inspired the writer of that wretched hymn?

    I’ll speculate: some combination of Neil Armstrong, Captain Kirk, Lost in Space, the Apollo program and leftovers from the church potluck spiked by food poisoning :)

  15. says

    Thanks for going and getting the lyrics. I have now been trying to explain both the VBS “sit down” chord (thanks for that too iMonk) and the lyrics to this hymn to my wife, who was raised in a Missionary Baptist church.
    We just replaced the ’73 hymnals at our church last year. I never once sang this hymn and even as one who spent my entire life wanting to be an astronaut, I could never fathom how this qualified as a hymn. If I ever find myself with a chance to go into space though, I am taking this hymn along.

    Jeff Ms last blog post..A Few Random Pieces Sewn Together

  16. says

    All this arguing isn’t going to change any votes. Only a true equalizer will cause a backlash of counter- votes.

    I’m going to go post an endorsement at TeamPyro and see how that impacts the voting. The traffic from my personal blog was ineffectuve in the last round …

    Frank Turks last blog post..Ways to avoid dealing with your sin

  17. Bill says

    The kids used to request the song on Sunday evenings. All the more reason to not have church on Sunday evenings.

    We did actually try to sing it. We managed to get through it straight faced after about a dozen times. Then we finally refused to sing it.

  18. Larry Geiger says

    It get even better. From the Lutheran Hymnbook:

    1. Earth and all stars, loud rushing planets,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    O victory, loud shouting army,
    sing to the Lord a new song!

    He has done maaaarvelous things.
    I, too, will praise him with a new song!

    2. Hail, wind, and rain, loud blowing snowstorms,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    Flowers and trees, loud rustling leaves,
    sing to the Lord a new song! Refrain

    3. Trumpet and pipes, loud clashing cymbals,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    Harp, lute, and lyre, loud humming cellos,
    sing to the Lord a new song! Refrain

    4. Engines and steel, loud pounding hammers,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    Limestone and beams, loud building workers,
    sing to the Lord a new song! Refrain

    5. Classrooms and labs, loud boiling test tubes,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    Athlete and band, loud cheering people,
    sing to the Lord a new song! Refrain

    6. Knowledge and truth, loud sounding wisdom,
    sing to the Lord a new song!
    Daughter and son, loud praying members,
    sing to the Lord a new song! Refrain

    (Loud boiling test tubes?? Good grief!)

  19. says

    Just read a few of the track backs. It’s good to see the evangelical / post-evangelical culture war battling over blog madness. This thing has more layers than I thought!

  20. says

    I’m rooting for iMonk. He needs more books.

    And see: the thing is that my perception is that people think I’m not really rooting for Michael. I am actually rooting for Michael. Especially if he’s going to use the Gift Card to buy Bibles for people.

    There’s no telling what an SBTS professor would do with $300 to Wesminster Bookstore — he might buy Bavinck or something.

    Frank Turks last blog post..Who didn’t see this coming?

    • says

      @Frank: Thanks for all the links and being a good sport about being left behind. If you’re still blogging next year you’ll get an automatic bid. (Just don’t let me forget.)

  21. iMonk says


    I consider you a friend with a similar- though not identical- sense of humor. I’m fine with your post, and if it results in more or less votes doesn’t matter. I’m in this thing totally by Tony’s graciousness anyway.

    But I must ask what you thought was going to happen with the comment thread over there? You know your audience. Mr. Phillips has already portrayed me as rejecting the deity of Jesus. The discussion thread is going to be another revisitation of my legacy at teampyro. Quite ironic, especially, in light of Phil and I having almost identical views of the state of evangelicalism.

    I appreciate your attempt to say the thread won’t be about me and what a terrible Baptist and terrible Christian I am, but here we go again. There are pathological iMonk psychos that live for that thread.

    When it gets down to talking about my family, I’m going to get angry. But till then, it’s just par for the course. I’m just sorry to see the comment thread that’s going to develop from this.

    peace and sincerely your friend,


  22. says

    @tony — you will live long enough to regret that. :-) If my blog is in the same level of pathetic postlesness next year as it is this year, I don;t deserve a nomination.

    @iMonk — I am sorry for what happened over there. I think Dan was fooling with you and it didn’t go well from there; the same has happened between you and me. The other stuff … :-( I just wanted people to vote for you so the most popular SBC blogger could be someone who would tell the Executive Committee what he -really- thinks about them.

    Frank Turks last blog post..One Little Word shall Fell Him

  23. iMonk says

    Thanks Frank,

    I know owe teampyro extra thanks for introducing me to “Everyday Mommy.”

    There’s always a silver lining to these things.

    I think I’ll go hug my dog. Seriously, If I win, some good people get Bibles, from whence they may correct me in person. A great deal.

    peace and friendship,


  24. iMonk says


    I’m extremely grateful to be taught that Leviticus 18 is about using beads when one is praying. I was laboring under the delusion that Lev 18 was about Canaanite sexual practices. Important insight there.


  25. Bill says

    A lay woman rebuking and teaching an ordained SBC minister? Doesn’t sound very complementarian. Where’s the CBMW?

  26. says


    For someone who pointedly stated that he isn’t interested in “the other side of this discussion” you just can’t seem to stop. Or is it that interaction with the “other side” simply isn’t desired on your blog?

    You are correct about the immediate context of Lev. 18, although I would argue that the underlying principle of Lev. 18:30 is not without wider applicability. However that’s not a verse that I would have referenced in this discussion. Leviticus 10 would be a much more appropriate reference.

    But given your history of interaction with so called “neo reformed” bloggers over the past several years who are more knowledgeable and capable than I, I am skeptical that I can make any difference.

    Respond again if you must, but time constraints dictate that this be my last response.


    Chris Poes last blog post..An Invitation

  27. Blake says

    I didn’t realize York and 9Marks were out in the first round last year and Reid and iMonk weren’t even in last year’s competition. The tables have certainly turned… or something. I wish Ed would have actually asked for votes on his blog. A showdown between Ed and iMonk would have been really cool.

    • says

      It was upside down and largely depended on who played along. I still think Beth Moore would have shocked everyone, but she didn’t link over.

  28. says

    Well, I hate that Chris decided to leave, because Leviticus 10 doesn’t have anything to do with prayer beads either. And you’d have to stretch the meaning of chapter 18 so far out of whack to make it apply in any manner at all, you’d never be able to look a liberal Protestant in the face again and complain about them not taking Scripture seriously.

    Ragamuffins last blog post..Vain repetition

  29. says

    Hershael York is undoubtedly the most precious Christian alive and his opinions on the things of God are BIBLICAL and wise and worth hearing every time!