The Eternal Melody: Mendelssohn and Bonhoeffer

The following is a guest post by Josh de Keijzer. Josh is a Ph.D. Candidate in Systematic Theology at Luther Seminary (St. Paul, MN). He blogs regularly at http://endofgod.wordpress.com. You can find him on Twitter at @Yossmantweets   Dutch conductor Hans Vonk once said of Beethoven: His music is the truth and nothing but the [Read More...]

Kierkegaard and Evangelicalism at the American Academy of Religion

Like numerous other religion and theology scholars, I’m preparing for the American Academy of Religion and Society of Biblical Literature conference, which starts tomorrow. I won’t be there till Saturday (if you care), but am looking forward to a jam-packed couple of days of papers, meetings, and catching up with friends. There are several interesting [Read More...]

A Dispatch from the World Council of Churches

My friend and colleague, Christian Collins Winn (Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology at Bethel University) shares the following “dispatch” from the World Council of Churches assembly.  We are now in the middle of the 10th Assembly of the World Council of Churches, being held in Busan, South Korea, with the initial rush of feeling [Read More...]

Jesus, Millstones, and the “Little Ones”

I’ve been spending time in Matthew 18 today. I’ve been deeply impressed with a sense of Jesus’ passionate concern for the marginalized, outcast, and “insignificant.” The chapter begins with the disciples’ question to Jesus, “Who, then, is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?” They were positioning themselves, angling for status, and pressing Jesus to make [Read More...]

Hard Work

Here is the sixth in a lovely list of ten lessons essential for every high school graduate preparing to venture out into the “real world.” While Elaine Bransford, the AP literature teacher who composed them did so for students, they carry applicability for us all. Number 6: You should know that there is something you are good [Read More...]

What’s Your “Madonna Moment?”

Paul Tillich, one of the most significant theologians of culture, tells of a moment in which he profoundly experienced the divine through gazing at a painting. Tillich had been a Lutheran pastor and served as a German Army chaplain in WWI. During his service in the war, he discovered that looking at books of art [Read More...]

You Can Always Go On

One of the more interesting resources on the Internet is the collected interviews at Paris Review. It is a sixty-year archive of hundreds of long form conversations with poets and writers, like Mary Karr, R Crumb, Billy Collins, Robert Frost, Jack Kerouac, and Czeslaw Milosz, among many, many others. One of the more provocative interviews [Read More...]

Death, Wine, & Cheese

The artist exists in an awkward relationship to her audience. She labors for many months, perhaps several years, to produce an exhibition of paintings to present to the public. She sacrifices time with her family and friends, isolating herself emotionally, intellectually, and physically. She reads, thinks, writes, reflects on her work, often questioning, doubting, and, [Read More...]

The Idolatry of the Penultimate

What do looking at paintings have to do with what most evangelicals understand by “engaging,” “transforming,” and “redeeming” culture? Not much. It is no secret that North American evangelicals regard politics to be the primary means by which God is active in the world. And many evangelicals have recently become convinced that “culture” (i.e., films, [Read More...]

Free Won’t

Philosopher extraordinaire Alvin Plantinga offers a trenchant review of new atheist Sam Harris’ latest book, Free Will. Harris argues that any notion of willfulness in human behavior is illusory. “Either our wills [i.e. decisions and choices] are determined by prior causes and we are not responsible for them, or they are the product of chance and we [Read More...]


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