Archives for Sep 20, 2010 @ 19:18

Why the fuss over O’Donnell?

I’ve got a theory… Here we’ve got a State with 3 electoral votes, my friends. 2 Senators. Here we’ve got a State in the last election that had about 62% for Obama (D) and 37% for McCain (R). In the last senatorial election, it was 70% for Democrat and a whopping 29% for Republican. In [Read More…]

That headship issue

What does it mean when Paul says in Ephesians 5:22-23, “Wives submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church”? For many of us in the church, this passage is one of those parts of Scripture we would prefer to avoid or ignore. Its language is metaphoric and clothed in imagery from a social and political world quite foreign to our own. Instead of abandoning or uncritically applying these confusing commands, however, let’s seek to more fully understand what Paul was saying to his audience in the first century, and explore how his instructions bear upon the Christian church today. Most importantly, let’s read this passage of Ephesians in light of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ in order to understand how these teachings are shaped by the gospel. [Read more…]

The Gifts 1 (by T)

As many regulars here know, I (“T”) believe God still heals (in every sense), still speaks to us and through us in a variety of ways, and generally does all the amazing things we see Jesus and his followers doing in the New Testament. In a nutshell, I believe that the gifts of the Spirit are still being given as part of God’s continuing gospel work and mission. There are a lot of ways we could discuss the topic here, but for this series, I’m going to share stories—personal stories—and then discuss them.

As I share these stories, ask yourself, “What would/should such experiences communicate to the people involved?” “How is the form of communication at work here significant?” “Where would or should such experiences affect the theology and/or practice of the people involved?” “How are such experiences best explained?” Also, please feel free to email me some of your own favorite stories at tnflaw at bellsouth dot net. [Read more…]

Atheist become Apologist

The story of Alister McGrath has become increasingly fascinating to me, and chp 7 of his book The Passionate Intellect: Christian Faith and the Discipleship of the Mind tells his story. In essence he tells an insider’s story of how he shifted from seeing a war between science and faith to see them as friends. Perhaps they don’t always see eye to eye, but they are not at war.

As a precocious youngster he took the plunge into the dismal world of radical atheism, a world that lacked meaning and purpose. He was smug and knew he was superior, and what happened was that he learned about the philosophy and history of scientific study. What he learned was that explanation is what science offers but it cannot explain everything, and that it operates on certain bases that cannot be surrendered — and neither can they tell the whole story. I hope you can read this chp someday; the first half is simply a wonderful story. What he learned was that science, at its best, is neutral and makes no claims outside of what it can speak about — testable empirical realities. He learned that atheism itself was a belief system.

His conversion entailed an understanding of natural theology, one that did not

…deduce the existence of God from a cold, detached observation of nature, but rather as the enterprise of seeing nature from the standpoint of faith, emphasizing the importance of belief in God in explaining the “big picture” (108).

He pondered the intelligibility issue and the anthropic phenomena, but what’s best in this chp is a powerful sketch of the challenges he gives to typical atheistic observations about faith: [Read more…]