Coming to ETS and SBL? Join me for these sessions

After missing last year, I’m looking forward to attending this year’s annual meetings for ETS (Evangelical Theological Society) and SBL (Society of Biblical Literature). If you plan to come, I’d love to connect. I’ll be giving talks at both conferences. Below are the presentation titles and other relevant information. Reading Scripture with “Eastern” Eyes: How Honor and Shame Make Us More Asian and Biblical Here is an introduction to my ETS presentation. Anyone can read the Bible with “Eastern” eyes…. Read more

How Rhetoric Ruins Missions

“Whoever uses the best rhetorical rules” …. Missionary rhetorical results in multiples problems. It silences dialogue by pressuring people to settle for what is merely true. It obscures the difference between “good” and “best.” Such rhetoric plants the seeds of division…. I mention the following examples so that we can consciously avoid rhetorical traps…. Read more

What the Chinese Church Teaches Me About Obligation and Love

We Americans charge the hill while screaming, “You can’t tell me what to do!” Read more

Do they protest with honor and shame but not wisdom?

Whoever said America was not an honor-shame society? Just this week, the President of the United States and LeBron “King” James exchanged barbs on Twitter that concerned whether being invited to the White House is an “honor.” Also, millions of Americans are incensed that NFL players expressed protest during the national anthem and so “disrespect” the flag and “dishonor” US soldiers. What provokes so many people? They are not debating “legality” and absolute moral standards. Ultimately the hubbub is about… Read more

6 Ways Honor and Shame Make Disciples (Not Converts)

preview:Honor and shame are essential for being & making disciples. They are more than mere labels used to describe culture & improve cross-cultural communication. Here are 6 ways honor and shame make disciples, not converts. Read more

Identifying God’s Enemies and Ours

Why does the Bible say we are “God’s enemies”? The reason is less obvious as some think. Read more

U.S. military as Onramp for Understanding Honor-Shame Cultures

As strange as it may sound, the U.S. military provides a very effective illustration for helping Americans understand what a collectivistic culture is and how honor-shame dynamics influence almost every facet of a person’s life. Read more

Assessing Theology from a Historical Perspective

Ask 3 theologians their opinion on a doctrine and you’ll likely get 4 answers. Theology is multi-faceted; biblical interpretation is just step one. This is why I previously highlighted a process for assessing theological arguments. What is the role of historical theology, i.e. theologians throughout church history? This point might be the biggest hurdle preventing people from accepting unfamiliar but true ideas. History as Conversation and Culture Historical theologians are conversation partners. Nothing else. They merely are interpreters like ourselves… Read more

How to Assess Theological Arguments

As my students and I debated during a Systematic Theology I course, it realized how little people are trained to assess the relative strength of theological arguments. Consider the typical back and forth of theological discussions. Both sides present Bible verses to support their respective positions. Appeals are made to scholars, past and present, who agree with “us.” And, of course, the others’ view is minimized as “not necessarily true.” Perhaps, one uses a more sophisticated approach in accusing the… Read more

Does Myers-Briggs type affect how you experience shame?

Is there any relationship between your Myers-Briggs personality type and the way you deal with shame? One site,, suggests how this might be true. I’ll give a few examples listed in the article but you will have to go there to see the rest. Tell me how and if it fits your M-B type. Every personality type deals with shame in different ways and some struggle to cope more than others. Here are the ways in which each Myers-Briggs… Read more

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