Last night many of us went to bed hearing the news that the United States has more formally entered the ongoing conflict in Syria by unleashing nearly 60 missiles onto a Syrian airbase. While the use of chemical weapons against their own citizens was surely a crime against humanity that warrants action by all nations, as the people of Jesus we must resist the temptation to endorse, embrace, or celebrate the use of war and death in an attempt to address… Read more

Growing up evangelical, you’ve probably heard this answer to the question, “Why did Jesus have to die on the cross?” “Well, Johnny or Susie, it’s because God can’t be in the presence of sin.” They will often go on to explain how sin is so intolerable to God, that he can’t be anywhere near it. To be able to pull close to God, somehow we must be completely free and cleansed of sin first. It’s also why we’re often told that… Read more

If penal substitution is true, God is not unlike other ancient, blood-thirsty god. In church we often sing worship songs with themes and phrases that say, “there is none like you!” I believe those songs are beautiful, because it’s true– there is no God like our God. But if penal substitution is true, God isn’t unique at all– God would be just like every other ancient god who had a thirst for blood. I mean, how is a god who… Read more

A now viral Facebook post by Southern California mom, Diandra Toyos, reports that she and her children were stalked by probable human traffickers while shopping in IKEA. The post has now been shared over 100,000 times on Facebook. I saw it float through my newsfeed by multiple people, and had many readers email me directly to ask my opinion. Human trafficking is a hot topic and one that I’ve written about extensively, in addition to having four years doctoral work… Read more

So, there’s this myth about suicide– and the myth is that depressed or grieving people who contemplate suicide are most at risk around the holidays. Turns out, that’s not accurate– the annual suicide rate actually begins to spike right now, with the bloom of spring. It may seem counterintuitive based on what we’ve been taught, but it’s true. Holidays can actually give one hope, purpose, reason, and even a distraction. For many families, even if there is a lack of… Read more

In Portland, Oregon, an Iranian refugee came home from a few days out of town to find his home had been horrifically vandalized while he was away. And, I’m not talking just some spray paint on the outside of his garage door– the house was broken into, and every room in the house had been vandalized. From slashing his couch, to spray paint on the walls and mirrors, the racist vandals wanted to send a message: Muslims are not welcomed here…. Read more

This morning I woke up with the above headline in my newsfeed– which is shocking since we supposedly live in a country where we’re told that Christians are the ones on the receiving end of anti-religious persecution. As reported by KKTV, an unidentified man vandalized the mosque at the Fort Collins Islamic Center around 4:00am on Sunday, breaking windows and throwing a Bible into the mosque. While the individual who did this is just one person, and even though at this… Read more

Anyone who has ever read the Old Testament knows there’s a lot of laws listed in those books– over 600 to be exact. In many circles of Christianity there’s often much debate as to what degree, if any, a Christian ought live by these laws. In the past when I have suggested that Christians are not obligated to abide by any of these laws at all, commenters will often quickly object, saying that “Jesus didn’t abolish the law.” While that fact… Read more

I think every character in the Bible has worthwhile things we can learn from, and Judas is no different. Read more

Fundamentalists of the “young earth” variety will often claim that the earth is just 6,000 years old. Their reasoning? The Bible says so. In fact, I’ve been following Ken Ham lately, and some of the stuff being put out by Answers in Genesis (Ken has blocked me on Facebook, FWIW) to see if they’ve had any new arguments. I’m continually amazed at how the young earth view of the universe is considered a foundational bedrock of their Christian faith. In… Read more

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