Category Archives: Standards


revivalOnce or twice a year, a fundamentalist church will hold a series of revival services. An evangelist or special speaker who is specially trained to give spiritual CPR will come into town and spend a few nights trying to get the church’s pulse going again. The fact that they are apparently so feeble that they needs periodic five-day-long jolts from a biblical defibrillator to keep them alive does not appear to bother fundies at all. They rather seem to enjoy it.

Revivals are a great time to combine a lot of fundy favorites: hard preaching, old fashioned altars, evangelist fish stories, and coming up with new things to feel guilty about. Throw in some special music and a few covered dish suppers and it’s a great time for everybody.

Another emphasis of revival services is bringing out lost people to hear the messages. This may strike some as odd since it would seem to be a contradiction in terms to try to ‘revive’ something that’s never been ‘vived’ in the first place. But the philosophy goes that if there’s preaching on sin going on, it’s a good idea to get a bunch of genuine sinners in to hear it. And there’s a reward Bible with your name on it if you can bring in the most.

Oh, Revive us again (and again, and again, and again).

The Mute Button

muteNinety-nine percent of homes in America contain at least one television and most fundamentalists own a TV just like everyone else. The television watching experience in a fundy household is unique, however. For father (or sometimes mother) holds the remote in an iron fist and the mute button is his weapon of choice against the combined forces of bad language and worldly music.

Rock music is not to be tolerated in the fundamentalist home and the opening theme to the A-Team is no exception. With a flick of the thumb this temptation of the flesh is banished. Songs that are too peppy meet the same fate. No fundamentalist child ever makes it all the way through any Disney movie since Robin Hood without at least one song being either muted or fast-forwarded.

Likewise, bad language must be dealth with in the harshest of terms, lest children be tempted to say words such as “golly” and “dagnabit.’ Some fundamentalist go so far as to construct a “bleep book” complete with timestamps of the exact moments to mute and unmute the dialog. Purity must be maintained not matter what the cost to the plot.

One may be tempted to ask why fundametalists bother to watch shows at all if they find so much in them worthy of censoring.  But you’ll have to ask it later, we’re almost back from commercial break and the TV is about to regain its voice.

Little Cups of Grape Juice

db_welchsWhen the time rolls around for the Lord’s Supper, fundamentalist pull out the little plastic cups and the big bottle of Welch’s grape juice (making extra sure not to use the sparkling grape juice with the foil over the cap since this is most assuredly the appearance of evil)

Now everybody in fundamentalists circles knows that Christians since the Apostles have all celebrated the Lord’s supper with grape juice. How they did this without refrigeration is a bit of mystery. It would seem that although our Lord turned water into wine, His followers spent a lot of their time miraculously turning wine back into water. Those Jews who were used to drinking fermented wine for Passover must have been in for quite a shock.

Moving forward in history, we can clearly see that all those tales about Luther and Calvin drinking beer and wine are just nonsense. It’s doubtless the devil’s lie to get the demon rum into our churches. Believing in a good American prohibitionist like Billy Sunday is better than following the examples of those beer-swilling foreigners any day.

Fundamentalists, lift those little cups high and be thankful that you are free from leaven of wine, if not the leaven of the Pharisees. All hail Welch’s.

Short Haircuts


The topic of hair (referred to by the great Dr. George Irving Barber as “Hairology“) is of great importance to fundamentalists. On men, hair is to remain short at all times without exception. Even if that means cutting it off with a rusty kitchen knife, it is a well known fact that a few errant strands of hair lapping over the ear or the collar will ruin your testimony and convince everyone that you are a dirty hippie.

There are a few exceptions. For example, if a namby-pamby fundamentalist college student is involved in historical theater, he may be required to wear a button proclaiming “I am in a dramatic production. My hair is not this length normally. I have special hair dispensation” (this is a very large button).

It’s not only the length that is important but the placement of the part as well. Hair parted in the middle is a likely sign of latent homosexuality. Hair not parted at all is liberal and slovenly. Only a side part will do to show that the wearer is a serious-minded and trustworthy sort.

In the words of the grand old song:

If your hair is on your ears, there’s sin in your heart.
Get it cut today and make a new start.
There’s no need for living in sin and dread
with a tangled mop upon your head.
If your hair is on your ears, there’s sin in your heart.