Constantine the Great, like Plato, manages to make enemies on the atheist and religious fringe. When ABeka books and Dan Brown both get you wrong, you did something right. Like all historically significant men, Constantine made mistakes, committed sins, and caused harm. Like Winston Churchill with the Nazis and the Communists or Lincoln with the Union and slavery, Constantine is great, because he got the big issues right. No sane person would just do what he did in the past… Read more

Christian higher education is broken in ways that more money or even more students would not fix. In fact, an infusion of cash into the present system would put off needed change and make the eventual transition to the better world more painful. Too often we do not know what is essential. We water down our Christian commitment hoping to get students. We shrink the liberal arts core chasing transfer students. We move away from full time teachers to part-time…. Read more

If you have a wedding, nothing is worse than the vows you wrote yourself, at least a decade later. If you have a funeral, words fail, unless you can turn to Cranmer or at least the Prayer Book. There is something odd, however, about a group repulsed by Prayer Book sexual morality keeping the language for weddings. There is a cultural failure in secularism ranging from atheism to progressive Christianity in producing much original art that endures and so such… Read more

Unless you are Stalin, Mao, or a few other people in history, nobody deserves to be called Hitler. He was very bad, not quite uniquely bad, but close.  How bad? To call him monstrous is true, but he was no monster really. He was human and that should wake us up. When I was a boy, the men of the World War II generation told me what they got from the trials of Nazi leaders at Nuremberg was how (in… Read more

An odd thing about our times: it is hard to agree with authority, at least if you have a certain personality. Thinking for yourself is good (often), but if you think for yourself and happen to agree with the experts, authority, or those in power, then there is a problem. A critic can always question motives. Let’s take the simplest example: children and parents. When I was a boy, I had excellent parents. They taught me to read, wonder, and love. I… Read more

”She,” a friend noted, “is going out with you out of pity.” This was fine. I had a chance and I intended to take it. After all, one evening was better than no evenings. One Chinese dinner with Her was better than a can of sardines at  home without Her. Those were the options and pity was fine with me. I was in fact pitiable, having failed my romantic ideals. You can tell a romantic that he should not aspire for… Read more

“Success, recognition, and conformity are the bywords of the modern world where everyone seems to crave the anesthetizing security of being identified with the majority.” In his classic book of sermons strength to love, Martin Luther King Jr. defends the Christian idea that we cannot be conformed to this world. If our state is racist, we must not conform. If our social set condones sexual immorality, we must not conform. He says both. We want to hear neither or one or… Read more

To do theology well is to pray well. Praying requires a “tough mind and a tender heart.” So says a man with both, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Imagine the alternative: Too often Americans are soft headed and hard hearted: too often true of all Americans whether secularists or Christian. Pop secularists talk reason, but are quick to disparage philosophy or attack science with religious implications. Christians often do not understand “faith,” accepting the secular idea that faith is opposed… Read more

Administration must be cut, radically cut (including salaries), at most schools. That’s the truth and I have been saying it for decades. Sometimes this sounds as if I do not value the back office work that must be done. Nothing could be further from the truth: if Roy Disney had not kept the books, there could have been no Walt Disney. The back office makes the work of creative people possible and I have been blessed to many who were… Read more

My Papaw Reynolds had a favorite saying: “Don’t step backwards or the Devil will step right into your footprints.” He meant that the evil one kept driving you backwards until you backed into a wall. My mother reminded us of this truth this week. We sometimes forget, she pointed out, that while our sins and the sins of other people are the source of much evil in the world, there is also a spiritual foe who is always plotting and planning… Read more

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