Redeeming Asbury Seminary as a Holy Institution: SPECIFIC DENSITY

There has been a great uproar in the Methodist Blogging community as some newbie, Jeremy Smith at Hacking Christianity, has taken it upon himself to develop a methodologically flawed formula to determine the holiness of UM Seminaries (including ATS, which is a non-UM seminary) according to the wording of their mission statements. His work has been lauded by such snarky and childish bloggers as John from Locusts and Honey and John Meunier.

Jeremy Smith has determined that Asbury Theological Seminary is the least holy institution.

However, Theresa Coleman has paved the way to defending ATS and restoring its gleaming name with her discovery of the concept of SPECIFIC DENSITY and this statement:

I say that we measure the “Holiness” and “Spirituality” by the Density of the books that are written by the faculty.

Coleman uses the following example:

I would claim that the SPECIFIC DENSITY of the writings of the faculty would be a better measure. I frequently did this with my textbooks, to see who had the heaviest course load. My heaviest course, by that measure was “Life in Biblical Israel” by King and Stager. It had a Density of 2.3 pounds per cubic foot, which was tremendously greater than say, the Chronicles of Narnia which topped out at 1.3 pounds per cubic foot.

Based on Coleman’s groundbreaking work in refuting the “key word” method of measuring holiness, I would like to propose a methodologically sound method of REDEEMING ASBURY THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY FROM THE HANDS OF THE HACKERS. The following is my response to Coleman’s resarch:


To add to the specific density measures, I suggest that we add the weight of the amount of coffee or other sustaining beverage that must be consumed in order to get through books of the institution’s faculty.

In that case, Theology as History and Hermeneutics, and God and History by Dr. Larry Wood of ATS measure only .5 pounds per cubic foot each. However I had to consume 10 cups of coffee per chapter which comes out to roughly 115 cups of coffee per book. To follow through with my ammended formula for SPECIFIC DENSITY of these texts,

SD=Density of Text + Amount of Sustaining Beverage Consumed (all unites to be converted to pounds/cubic foot)

Where the Amount of Sustaining Beverage Consumed= The weight of the solid matter and liquid matter required to create the beverage.

To continue, each cup of coffee requires the use of .36oz of coffee grounds and 6.258oz of water.

OK, so. Here is the math for the Specific Density of Dr. Wood’s texts:
SD= 2(.5p/cu.f) + [110(6.258 + .36)]/16

Which comes out to: the total SPECIFIC DENSITY of Dr. Wood’s course equals 46.5 pounds per cubic foot.

Due to my calculations this is indicative of the faculty of ATS and therefore, I consider Asbury Theological Seminary to be a very holy institution according the new definition of SPECIFIC DENSITY of the written works of the faculty and the amount of sustaining beverage required to complete said texts.

Thank you very much. I look forward to signing your copy of my dissertation on this topic.


Coleman continues to amaze and shows me how I should improve my equation:

I would suggest that you add into the equation some notion about how far away the bathroom is, with that amount of coffee…


10 responses to “Redeeming Asbury Seminary as a Holy Institution: SPECIFIC DENSITY

  1. I like to think of my snarkiness as a spiritual gift.

  2. This sounds brilliant! I’ll get the monkeys typing away the equation results immediately!

    (these are the same monkeys who picked out the lectionary, by the way. Their track record is superb!) πŸ˜‰

    Oh, and this post? Hilarious.

  3. Snarkiness as a spiritual gift?
    Wow. I like it.

  4. Snarkiness is a spiritual gift — if you’re reading Corinthians from Rob Lacey’s Word on the Street Bible!

  5. Jeremy,

    Glad you like it. With it, I will make millions. I will give you a cut of the profits:

    …you can keep the monkeys!

  6. Snarkiness in some is a spiritual gift. In others, it’s a way of life πŸ™‚

  7. We need snarkiness in our lives. It’s a real need for some.

  8. You’re right rev mom. Without snarkiness, I have no blog. πŸ™‚

  9. If you think Wood’s books are difficult to get through, try taking a couple of his classes, one of which requires reading both of those books. Great guy, but those are some long classes…

  10. Matt, I know what you mean! I’m currently taking Method and Praxis in Theology! Don’t get me wrong, this is an awesome class, but I’ve gone through 2 coffee pots!

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