We’ve been looking at it backwards.  At least I have. I’ve been in conversation with a Facebook friend recently, regarding the age-old question:  “If there is a good God, why does evil exist in the universe?”  Lots of ink has been spilled and bytes have flown over the topic … I’ve weighed in on it myself in the past.  The bottom line, as I have … Continue reading YCIDOEHT »

This Christian repudiates not only last week’s violence, but all Trumpism

Longtime readers of this blog know that I have mostly tried to stay clear of overtly political statements. Nobody could read what I’ve written here and not have some inkling as to where I stand, but I’ve tried to avoid the direct partisanship that characterizes all too much religious discourse in America.  Events leading up to, and since the U.S. election of 2020 compel me … Continue reading This Christian repudiates not only last week’s violence, but all Trumpism »

4th of July and 13th of Romans

Once again, we Americans are getting together to barbecue our hot dogs, chill our beers, and light our fireworks for the Fourth of July celebration of American independence. I’ll celebrate too … I love a good party and I have been known to contribute my share to the libations and explosions that accompany such events. I’m also grateful to live in the United States. This … Continue reading 4th of July and 13th of Romans »

From Cana to Emmaus — Known in the Bread

  At the wedding in Cana you met those who’d seek you, Three days since the dove from the sky. Wine for the feast from the water they brought you: Your very first miracle was to provide. In the cup of rejoicing you made yourself known, Unexpected, bewildering, kind. In remembrance we do this, whom you’ve called your own, So make yourself known in the … Continue reading From Cana to Emmaus — Known in the Bread »

Christians and the Second Amendment

Recent events have Americans once again debating (more like shouting at each other) the relative merits of private firearms vs. gun control in our country.  As usual, the rhetoric is extreme, emotions are high, and friendships are strained over the disagreement.  There are legitimate discussions to be had over various policy alternatives, and I have opinions aplenty on many of the issues myself.  I’m not … Continue reading Christians and the Second Amendment »

Jesus, Christians, and Fear

It dawned on me recently that a great deal of my frustration with conservative Christianity is the role that fear plays in the narrative of the faith.  In their theology, their evangelism, and their politics, it seems to me, conservative Christians rely on and promote fear as part and parcel of the Gospel.  This perspective is deeply antithetical to the God whose most frequent command … Continue reading Jesus, Christians, and Fear »

Faith Comes By Hearing … reexamining a familiar text

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”  (Rom. 10:17, KJV) So reads a popular text that is often used by Christians for various variations on a theme that usually centers around listening to the preacher.  The usual interpretation is best distilled, actually, by the rendering in the New International Version (2011, not 1973 or 1984): “Consequently, faith comes from … Continue reading Faith Comes By Hearing … reexamining a familiar text »

How Should We Respond? When non-Christians ask us about faith …

Last week Nicholas Kristof, a New York Times reporter for whom I have a great deal of respect, published an interview he had with Tim Keller, a theologian and pastor I also respect greatly.  In it, Kristof says “… I deeply admire Jesus and his message, but am also skeptical of themes that have been integral to Christianity — the virgin birth, the Resurrection, the … Continue reading How Should We Respond? When non-Christians ask us about faith … »

Why Faith?

I just had an atheist with whom I’ve been interacting ask me a great question:  “What’s so good about faith?”  He went on to describe the concept as “believing without seeing,” and compared it to walking across the street blindfolded … something he and I would agree is pretty dumb.  So here’s my answer: Nothing, in the way you describe it. That idea that there’s … Continue reading Why Faith? »