Man Wants to be God: God Wanted to be Man

The great songster and humorist (and Missouri Synod Lutheran) Lyle Lovett has a song entitled “God Will” (lyrics at the link).  Who will love you despite your cheating ways?  Who will forgive you for all the wrong you’ve done?  “God does./  But I don’t. /God will.  /But I won’t./  And that’s the difference between God and me.” There are, of course, lots of other differences!  But my various advent devotions, readings, hymns, and sermons have been impressing on me the personality of… Read more

Political Ideology as Our New Religions

Nancy Pelosi describes sexual abuser John Conyers as an “icon.”  Environmentalists prophecy an apocalyptic last judgment and the end of the world.  Progressives look forward to the kingdom of heaven on earth but find saints, martyrs, and taboos in identity politics.  Conservatives demand adherence to orthodox doctrines and condemn backsliders.  John Hart notes the religious language being used by secular politicians and concludes that religion is being replaced by political ideology. In his article Is Ideology Becoming America’s Official Religion? (in Forbes,… Read more

The Case of the Gay Wedding Cake

  The Supreme Court on Tuesday heard arguments in the case of Masterpiece Cakeshop, v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.  Christian baker Jack Phillips refused to create one of his “masterpiece” wedding cakes for a same-sex marriage ceremony.  The exercise of his religious beliefs was found to be in violation of Colorado’s anti-discrimination statutes, whereupon, he lost his business. In the hearing, Phillips’ attorneys argued on two grounds:  religious liberty and freedom of speech, which court precedents have extended to apply to works of… Read more

Because God Is Merciful

Before we retired a couple of years ago and moved to Oklahoma, we attended St. Athanasius Lutheran Church in Vienna, Virginia.  Longtime readers of this blog may remember how I would often post about sermons from our pastor, Rev. James Douthwaite.  Well, we still get the newsletter, which this month includes  a column from Pastor Douthwaite that deserves wider circulation:  “Because God Is Merciful.”  I reprint it here with his permission. As background, the congregation has been struggling with some maddening problems…. Read more

President Trump’s Legal Problems

The Russia issue will not go away for President Trump, and Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller seems to be hot on the President’s trail.  But the question remains, what is the legal status of the elected head of the Executive branch of the government?  Can a president be indicted, should it come to that?  Is impeachment the only legal remedy against lawbreaking by a president?  And are investigations into a president’s legal problems inevitably tainted by politics? Here are the latest developments: … Read more

God Acts for Those Who Wait for Him

Why doesn’t God do something about all the evil in the world? The Bible says that He has. And He will. Read more

Peace Through Oil & Natural Gas

One reason Vladimir Putin has had so much clout in Europe–especially in the Eastern European nations that were once under Communist rule–is that Russia has supplied much of the region’s oil and natural gas.  Now many of those nations are buying from the United States instead. Putin sometimes threatens to cut off energy shipments to countries that cross him, and sometimes he has carried out that threat. Up until recently, Russia was the world’s largest natural gas producer.  But thanks to… Read more

The Season of Christ “Coming to” Us

The season of Advent has begun! The word comes from the Latin, meaning “coming to” (from ad “to” + venire “to come”). The season is about Christ “coming to” us. Read more

Senate Ensures Tax Reform

President Trump and the Republican Party scored a major legislative victory, as the Senate passed the Tax Reform Bill, ensuring a big tax cut for individuals and businesses. The House of Representatives passed a different version of the bill earlier.  Now a conference committee of the two legislative bodies will reconcile the two measures and craft a new bill that both houses are expected to pass.  President Trump would then sign it into law. Lawmakers plan for the tax cuts to go into effect… Read more

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