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Showing posts from August, 2010

Christians and Politics

Many Christians believe that Christianity and electoral politics do not mix. The popular model would have us waiting for escape from this “vale of tears” or wringing our hands in observation of the “signs of the times” as we await the rapture. While others are more to the point: electoral politics and the work of culture in general, they say, is dirty stuff in which Christians, called to purity, should not sully themselves. So, different motivations, but the same end: isolationist occupation in the world.

But God does not call his Church to be a cultural eunuch. Clearly God wants us to obey him; he calls us out of darkness into light to do his will. But he calls us to do his will in our bodies and in the concrete processes of history. There is no escaping the fact that though our citizenship is in heaven the world is our temporary address. How shall we treat it? Shall we not pick up after ourselves? Or worse, shall we let our godless roommates trash the place while we sit by indiffer…

Abortion and the Early Church

In the early Roman Empire abortion was practiced with little shame. It was not uncommon for a man to insist that his wife abort their baby if she suspected it was a girl. Hippolytus of Rome records that women either took drugs or bound themselves tightly around the mid-section in order to “expel was being conceived” (Refutation of all Heresies, Book 9). Another method was to “expose” the newly born by simply abandoning it. Again, this practice was more common if the child was a girl as illustrated in the classic letter written in 1 B.C. by the Egyptian laborer Hilarion to his wife. “If you give birth to multiples, if there is a boy let it [live], but if they are girls, expose [them].” However, according to Origen (A.D. 185–254), Christianity changed men’s moral character so thoroughly that they no longer participated in these evil deeds of darkness. Christians then went on to openly challenge these practices in the public square (see Letter to Diognetus, 6 and Justin, 1 Apology 27). …

What is Revival?

(from my new book, My Almost for His Highest)

Is spiritual revival equivalent to ecstatic experience? Speaking in tongues? The manifestation of miracles in public worship? While these things have had a place in historical revivals, let’s look for a clear biblical definition of revival.  
Exodus 3 and 4:17 record God’s call to Moses to deliver the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt. The call of God is the basis for Moses legitimacy as a leader of God’s people. Moses, and no one else, led the Israelites out of Egypt, delivered the 10 Commandments to the people, and called them to repentance because his legitimacy as a leader gave him the authority to do these things.
After decades of wandering in the wilderness, the nation of Israel is now about to enter the Promised Land. Chapters 29 and 30 of the book of Deuteronomy comprise the last portion of Moses’ third and final discourse to the Jewish people prior to his death in Jordan and their entering the Promised Land under the leade…

Would Jonathan Edwards Work Today?

Yale theology professors, Kenneth P. Minkema and Harry S. Stout, provide their impressions of how Edward's famous sermon, "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" would work in today's church environment. Pay special attention to Minkema's virtual ridicule of hell, judgment, and God's wrath, and Stout's view that should "hell" be preached today it should not be as a real place, for such would only trivialize the idea. Rather, hell ought to preached in an existentialist fashion: as alienation from our "ground of being."

These two professors only further confirm my long-held view that my old Alma Mater is getting more and more away from Christ and his gospel.