Reza Aslan, Jesus, and the (False) Presumption of Objectivity

When I watched the clip of Fox News anchor Lauren Green interviewing professor Reza Aslan about his recent book, Zealot: the Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, my initial reactions were nearly as confused as the interview was chaotic. The interview illustrates the state of contemporary religious lack of discourse: everybody is scrambling to find a place [Read More...]

Redeeming Doubt (The Other Side of Faith)

Thanks to Tony Jones for posting an excerpt from Emerging Prophet on his blog today (and tomorrow). The post today is from my reflections on epistemology, Against Certainty, in which I argue that doubt is not an enemy of real, authentic faith; rather, it represents the “other side” of faith. Both Kierkegaard and the emergent church (in particular, [Read More...]

“Mind Your Own Business!” (Some Advice from St. Paul)

I recently came across some surprising advice to Christians from Paul. “Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life; you should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you.  (1 Thessalonians 4:11). A quiet life? Mind your own business? Is this the same Paul speaking? The Paul whose [Read More...]

The NSA and the End of Privacy (Or, Why We Don’t Care)

Upon hearing the news of the NSA phone records-breach-of-privacy-scandal, I was a bit surprised at my own reaction–or rather, lack of reaction. It seemed like just another step in the direction of the new normal, brought on technology and the ubiquity of social networks. Every day, it seems, we surrender more and more of our [Read More...]

Evangelicalism, Salvation, and other Religions: The Conversation Continues

Over at respectfulconversation.net, the second round of dialogue is now beginning. This month the topic is on evangelicalism and salvation (we theologians like to call it “soteriology”). These are some of the questions we are addressing: 1. Is Christianity “exclusive”? What does that mean? Is Christianity the one true faith? 2. Is there anything for [Read More...]

The Future of “Evangelical”? Don’t Miss This Conversation

Over at Respectful Conversation, hosted by Harold Heie, an interesting conversation is underway regarding the place of evangelicalism within larger Christian traditions. What does it mean to be “evangelical” today? Does evangelicalism and evangelicals have a distinct, usable entity? What will be the future of the loose coalition (if it is that) or the “family [Read More...]

“Troubled Minds”: Mental Illness and the Church’s Failure to Address it

Mental illness is on our minds. Recently, Matthew Warren, son of mega-church pastor Rick Warren, took his own life after a long struggle with severe mental illness. This tragedy, directly impacting “America’s pastor,” has brought the discussion of mental illness to the forefront (and, predictably, has also given occasion for the ignorant, un-sympathetic mouthpieces of [Read More...]

“Emerging Prophet” and Kierkegaard’s Big Birthday

Søren Kierkegaard was born on May 5, 1813. In honor of his bicentenary, my publisher is offering a 40% discount on my new book, Emerging Prophet: Kierkegaard and the Postmodern People of God.  (The original list price is $20). To get the discount, just follow the link and enter the coupon code PROPHET in the shopping cart. Here [Read More...]

The High Cost of Cheap Clothes

Over 300 people have died in the garment factory collapse in Bangladesh. There are 50 people buried under the rubble. The factory was built on a swampland. This raises, once again, really tough questions for us–for which there are no simple answers. Anna McMullen has a helpful, balanced, reasonable article, called “Who Really Pays for [Read More...]

Reflecting on “The Heavenly Good of Earthly Work”

Does the ordinary work have eternal significance? Do the products and achievements of industry, art, music, education, medicine and (pretty much everything else we could think of) carry on into the new creation (Eschaton)? This is the question Darrell Cosden addresses in The Heavenly Good of Earthly Work (Hendrickson, 2006) and, in a more detailed, deeper way, [Read More...]


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