Amazing Grace Book Burning

Via Matthew Paul Turner. One advantage of being Baptist is that you don’t have to be like other Baptists. One disadvantage of being Baptist is that you often hang your head in embarrassment at other Baptists, and have to explain “I am/we are not at all like those other Baptists.” [Read more...]

The Most Honest Places in Town

“Churches should be the most honest place in town, not the happiest place in town.” – Walter Bruggeman Pete Enns shared the above quote in a post that highlights the psalms of lament. The Bible, taken as a whole, doesn’t suggest that human beings ought to simply believe, or keep their doubts and complaints to [Read More...]

Context Contest

Lots of people post pictures and then have a caption contest. But this photo seems to have its own “caption” included. What’s missing is the context. I took the photo of this sign in front of a local church here in Indianapolis. But what does it mean? Rather than try to find out the actual [Read More...]

Sacred Theories

Hemant Mehta shared this church sign. What it says is quite ironic, given that, since it is from a Free Methodist church, it is probably intended to be antievolutionist. But taken at face value, it is an excellent summary, putting in a nutshell a point made at greater length in a chart that Scott Bailey [Read More...]

Narrow vs. High Standards

Stuff Fundies Like shared this questionnaire that would-be guest speakers at a fundamentalist church have to complete: I suppose the main point to make in response is that rejecting lots of things does not mean that your standard is high, only that it is narrow. And unless one figures out the difference early enough, the narrow approach [Read More...]

The First Millennials

The conversation about millennials and church decline continues – see for instance posts by Richard Beck, Bob Cornwall (and another), Tripp Fuller, Hollis Phelps, Eddie Kouya, Allan Bevere, Travis Mamone, Caris Adel, Ann Fontaine, David Hayward, Chris Attaway, and Shannon Barber. Many have suggested that this discussion is one that happens, if not every generation, at [Read More...]

We Love Hurting People

Unfortunately the sentence on this church sign can be understood in two different ways. And unfortunately there are churches for which each of the possible meanings is true.   [Read more...]

Building a Church in Minecraft

A young and creative individual in my church, David Peacock, created this in Minecraft: It is a rendition of the building where my church meets, Crooked Creek Baptist Church. Here is a photo, for comparison: I am very impressed with the likeness, and the creativity in doing something like this. It got me thinking about [Read More...]

Let My People Go!

David Hayward has done it again. Such a simple and yet such a poignant idea – that in at least some instances, the church has become like Pharaoh. Behaving like tyrants, many authoritarian pastors have become the sorts of oppessive dictators that God's people need to be liberated from. Frequently in Jewish tradition, as well [Read More...]

Discovering How Not to Make a Lightbulb (or a Church)

My colleague Gautam Rao created posters for this past year's year-long series of events at Butler University centered around the theme of risk. Here is one of them, plus a second item he made explaining the inspiration for the first: The quote from Thimas Edison, that he had not failed over the years, he had [Read More...]

The Future of Churches

IO9 had a post focused on images of church buildings which have been repurposed for secular use. I will share some select examples below, but click through for many more. Churches can react to this with fear, or treat them as inspiration. In some instances, it might make more sense to the life of Christian [Read More...]


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