Trevor Sutton, a pastor and the co-author with me of Authentic Christianity, has been studying the effects of social media.  Back in April, we blogged about an article that he wrote on How Social Media Is Designed Around Sin.  He has a follow-up to that article at Sightings in which he explores the impact of Facebook on religion. Basically, he says that all of the linking from diverse sources, allowing users to jump from one unconnected post on religion to another, creates… Read more

Once again, I am reminded of George Orwell. . . .Our discussion of pro-abortion language made me think of his essay “Politics and the English Language.” It was published in 1946, so he had in mind the political language of Communism, Fascism, and post-war Big Governments, but the points he makes are classic, applying to every age. Everyone should read the complete essay, both to inoculate yourself against propaganda and to ensure that you don’t slip into the same kind… Read more

Despite the way it is taken by both the president’s critics and his supporters, special prosecutor Robert Mueller ‘s investigation is not aimed primarily at President Trump.  Its initial purpose was to investigate Russia’s alleged attempts to influence America’s elections.  And now Mueller has indicted 12 agents of Russian military intelligence for doing just that. From Katelyn Polantz and Stephen Colllinson, 12 Russians Indicted in Mueller Investigation, CNN: The Justice Department announced indictments against 12 Russian nationals as part of special counsel Robert… Read more

Notice how those who believe in abortion don’t say that they believe in abortion.  They are “pro-choice.”  But that term has become somewhat outdated.  Now believing that it is justified to kill an unborn child is called advocating “reproductive rights.”  And being in favor of “women’s health.” Do you see what is happening?  Such language frames the issue and twists the argument.  If “women’s health” is used as a synonym for abortion, to oppose abortion is to oppose “women’s health.”… Read more

Thinking about expunging politically-incorrect authors, censoring literary classics, and re-writing history made me think of “the memory hole” in George Orwell’s 1984. The protagonist Winston’s job was to edit old newspapers so that the historical record would be in accord with the ruling party’s current ideology and Big Brother’s latest pronouncements.  The old versions were dropped down “the memory hole” where they were burned.  This was also done with old books, documents, films, and other records of past ideas. Of course,… Read more

Even though Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867-1957) is a female author of true greatness, she is being purged from the canon of American literature.  The author of the beloved “Little House on the Prairie” books, a thinly fictionalized telling of her own experiences growing up on the American frontier, has had her name removed from a prestigious prize for children’s literature.  This will likely herald her disappearance from recommended reading lists, school curricula, and reading programs. The American Library Association changed… Read more

The saga of Oklahoma’s referendum legalizing medical marijuana continues. . . .The measure requires users and sellers to get a license, but there are hardly any other restrictions.  This suggests that the real purpose of the initiative was to legalize recreational use, though requiring a license to do so.  Critics complained that the referendum was too vague, but supporters said the state could work out the regulation later. And now it has done so.  The state Health Department, which was… Read more

Does your church offer multiple worship services, each with a different style?  One traditional, one contemporary?  Plus a children’s service?  An option of contemporary services, with one featuring “praise music” and another being more “emergent”?  Lots of large congregations offer this kind of variety.  But evangelical church musician Jonathan Aigner raises a warning. He has written a post at his Patheos blog entitled  How Offering Different Worship Styles Contributes to Church Decline.  His criticism is not that all of those different… Read more

Now that our trade war with China and other countries is under way, we will see if President Trump’s new tariffs on imports will help our economy by protecting American workers and businesses or whether it will hurt our economy by sending up prices and cutting off American farmers, manufacturers, and other exporters from their overseas markets. In the meantime, we might wonder why a president has the authority to set tariffs and thus regulate foreign trade.  Isn’t a tariff… Read more

The Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) broke away from the Episcopal Church in the USA because of that denomination’s extreme theological liberalism.  But the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON) has recognized ACNA as the legitimate Anglican body in the United States, removing recognition from the Episcopal Church. This raises the possibility that in the 2020 conclave of the world’s Anglicans, the Lambeth Conference, the Episcopal Church USA might get booted from the world-wide Anglican Communion. At the 1998 Lambeth… Read more

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