Paul Marshall of the Hudson Institute passed along a letter he received from his friend, a Coptic bishop in Egypt. It shows the spirit of the Christians there, as they endure terrible persecution (as we have been blogging about). They aren’t about preserving their Christian culture or taking vengeance or planning violence. They remain focused, through it all, on “painful love,” working forgiveness and praying for their persecutors: Dear Friends, Thank you for sharing our difficult time. We are passing… Read more

President Obama plans another kind of bailout: In keeping with his new campaign theme of “we can’t wait,” President Obama today will roll out a plan to put more money in the pockets of some of the nation’s 36 million student loan recipients. Obama has broad latitude in this area – certainly broader than the first two parts of his western campaign trip, underwater mortgages and subsidies for hiring veterans – because one of his early legislative initiatives was to… Read more

CNN’s religion blog asked several experts if they thought that the recently departed Steve Jobs has been turned into a secular saint.  I liked what Gary Laderman of Emory University had to say: Steve Jobs the man is dead. But Steve Jobs the myth is only growing in stature and will only continue to grow as a cultural point of reference as an inspiring model for aspiring entrepreneurs, as a compelling success story with perplexing moral commitments and as an… Read more

We’ve been having our own Anglican-Lutheran dialogues on this blog.  It so happens that today a more formal discussion is taking place on a much higher level: Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana will be the site for the third installment of dialogue between the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) and The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), October 27–28. The focus for this meeting will be Contemporary Issues Facing the Church in North America. An open forum will take place… Read more

Justin Taylor, editor at Crossway Books, has a great post–entitled “The Best Christian Novel You Have Never Heard Of”– on the Swedish Lutheran novelist Bo Giertz.  He quotes Leland Ryken, a Wheaton professor I have known for a long time who is one of the top evangelical literary critics: Bo Giertz’s fictional work The Hammer of God is one of the best literary “finds” I have ever made. I discovered this novel-length series of three novellas while co-authoring a soon-to-be-released, co-authored (with Philip… Read more

The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace has issued a document on solving the world’s financial problems.  In the course of those pontifications, the Vatican committee calls for the establishment of a world government, a “world political authority.”  From the document: On the way to building a more fraternal and just human family and, even before that, a new humanism open to transcendence, Blessed John XXIII’s teaching seems especially timely. In the prophetic Encyclical Pacem in Terris of 1963, he… Read more

Belated birthday wishes, that is.  Yesterday, October 25, would have been the 200th birthday of C. F. W. Walther, the pastor/theologian who led a small band of persecuted confessional Lutherans away from the arch-liberal state church in Germany to religious freedom in America, whereupon he founded the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. Rev. Joshua Scheer pays him a tribute with a quotation showing that not all that much has changed theologically since 1856: “We are well aware that thereby we set… Read more

In honor of his 80th birthday, Christianity Today reprints a fascinating interview with Thomas Oden, a formerly liberal theologian who discovered the church fathers and who now has been advocating a historically orthodox Christianity in all of the theological traditions.  In the interview, he tells about how he abandoned liberalism–largely because of the liberal stand on abortion–how reading Luther helped cure him of radicalism, why we need creeds and church history in addition to the Bible, how evangelicals need to… Read more

Often researchers find what they want to find. More persuasive is when researchers find what they do not want to find but report it anyway. A new study of climate change was funded by skeptics of global warming. They took into account the skeptics’ critiques of the methodology and data gathering used by the scientists discredited in the Climategate scandal.  Lo and behold, this new study ended up confirming the earlier research.  Actually, it found slightly higher average temperature increases. … Read more

Raymond Ibrahim details what is happening to Christians in Egypt and how the atrocities are covered–jargon for “reporting” but containing the metaphor of “hiding’– in our media: Sunday [October 9], the Egyptian military opened fire on thousands of Christians protesting in Maspero, Cairo. In the words of one Christian eyewitness, armored vehicles “came at great speed and drove into the crowds, going backwards and forwards, mowing people under their wheels. The most horrible scene was when one of the vehicles… Read more

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