Leadership Redefined to Followership

When Joe Stowell sent me his manuscript on leadership to read for an endorsement, I was not but a few pages in when I realized “this is my kind of book.” Why? Some of you will know I have balked at the constant discussion of leadership in Christian circles, and I’m not the first to [Read More...]

Solar Powered Germany

Great news. Continuing its unrelenting march toward a renewable-powered future, Germany now can producemore than half of its energy from solar. The official word of this milestone comes from the Fraunhofer ISE research institute, which showed that the country produced a record 24.24 GW of solar energy during the first week of June. Thanks to better [Read More...]

Rethinking Hell: Argument Four

The traditional view of the church, which is not to say that everyone has always believed this everywhere but that this has been the historic view in standard theologies, is that the wicked will be endlessly punished (often called, eternal conscious torment/punishment, hence ECT or ECP). That view has now and then had its detractors [Read More...]

Using “We” in Public Prayers

In their splendid book, Shaping the Prayers of the People, on intercessory prayers in corporate worship, Samuel Wells and Abigail Kocher make a case that we need to be very careful about how we use the word “we.” They illustrate with five groups, for whom the “we” in the congregation/church/service might not apply: 1. Our [Read More...]

Rt. Rev. Foley Beach, new Archbishop

We have a new Archbishop in the Anglican Church of North America: Author:  George Conger The House of Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) has elected the Rt. Rev. Foley Beach as its second archbishop in succession to the Most Rev. Robert Duncan. Meeting in a private conclave at St Vincent College [Read More...]

Doomsday Beliefs, Life Impact

Gary Black on doomsday eschatological schemes: Coming soon to a theatre near you (again) is the remake of Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkin’s first book in the multi-volume series Left Behind. These 16 stories convey their biblio-fictional interpretation of how John’s vision of the end of the world, as described in the book of Revelation, might play [Read More...]

Prayer for the Week

O Lord, Make us have perpetual love and reverence for your holy Name, for you never fail to help and govern those whom you have set upon the sure foundation of your loving­kindness. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. [Read more...]

The State is Flat

Which States in the USA are the flattest? Illinois is flatter than every state but one, according to researchers, and is less hilly even than Kansas, a place once proven to be flatter than an IHOP pancake. Jerome Dobson, a University of Kansas geographer, set out to compare how flat states actually are with how [Read More...]

Weekly Meanderings, 21 June 2014

What to have for breakfast? Cleveland Clinic: You’re driving for hours on an uphill road. You’ve got the air conditioner cranked, the windshield wipers on and the gas pedal to the floor. After six hours, your car starts to sputter. You pull over to get some gas. Now imagine the car is your body. It [Read More...]

Church Giving not Staying with the Trend

By Lauren Markoe: WASHINGTON (RNS) Americans are slowly pulling themselves out of a charitable slump — except when it comes to religious groups. That takeaway from the new Giving USA report, perhaps the most-read annual study on philanthropy, shows a slight downturn for churches and other religious organizations against an improving charity landscape. American individuals, groups, foundations [Read More...]

The Apprentice Institute

An announcement: Dallas Willard and Richard Foster opened the door for more Christians to explore the deep teachings of Christian spirituality in the great traditions of the church. Many of us have walked through that door and are discovering new insights for spiritual formation. One of the more profound insights for me is an ecclesial, [Read More...]

From the Shepherd’s Nook: Jesus, Marriage, Divorce (John Frye)

Our Friday From the Shepherd’s Nook post is, as always, by John Frye. Jesus sits and teaches as the new Moses correcting the distorted teachings and practices of Torah related to marriage and divorce. We will review chapters six and seven of Scot McKnight’s Story of God Bible Commentary: Sermon on the Mount. Torah intends [Read More...]

Death Penalty: Shane Claiborne

Thanks Shane. I oppose the death penalty. (RNS) It’s 93 degrees in Texas and the Rev. Jeff Hood is walking 200 miles across the state. What would compel somebody to do that? He wants to end the death penalty – and he is not alone. Hood is a Southern Baptist pastor, deeply troubled by his denomination’s stand [Read More...]

Time for Churches to Devote Attention to Family

From The Atlantic by Olga Khazan: First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes … actually reverse that. First comes the baby, then, we’ll see. For people who don’t have a college degree, having a child in wedlock has become the exception, not the rule. According to a new analysis presented at the Population Association of America, among parents [Read More...]

The First Expositor of Romans was … Phoebe!

Jeremy Bouma and Mike Bird: Michael Bird says he likes to open his Romans class each year with a special question: Paul dictated the message of Romans; who actually wrote the message down? After the class settles on Tertius, he asks another: Who delivered Romans? Who was Paul’s envoy? After receiving confused faces and odd looks, he [Read More...]

Our Prayers for the Bishops

Source: PITTSBURGH — There won’t be any white smoke coming out of the chimney, but they’re calling it a conclave, similar to a papal election. Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America – a breakaway denomination formed by conservatives dismayed by liberal trends in the Episcopal Church and its Canadian counterpart – will gather at [Read More...]

In the Image of a Violent God? (RJS)

Chapter 6 of  J. Richard Middleton’s book The Liberating Image: The Imago Dei in Genesis 1 addresses the question of the nature of God revealed in creation. Most of the Mesopotamian creation myths involve creation as part of some great cosmic battle. This combat motif is also present in Canaanite myths. Scholars have found traces [Read More...]