Teaching a Kingdom Narrative in a Church

The majority of us are taught the faith through a set of theological ideas, whether they are the Creed, a Reformation Confession, a church’s statement of faith, or a systematic theology. Well and good, we’ve done this quite well. But teaching the faith through a set of beliefs works against (1) the essential narratival structure [Read More...]

What Makes Pandas Tick?

Not much, evidently. Giant pandas only eat bamboo, a low-nutrient food they can barely digest. So how can these massive creatures exist on such a terrible diet? By being big ol’ sacks of lazy, basically. That’s at least the prism from which I view the latest findings on giant panda metabolism researchers published this week in the journal Science. (Disclosure: I have feelings on giant [Read More...]

Marriage and Heaven (by David Opderbeck)

Marriage, Homosexuality, and Heaven by David Opderbeck I wonder if my personal feelings about the U.S. Supreme Court’s gay marriage case are common among Christians of my age and social location:  ambivalence, uncertainty, discomfort, regret . . . . Some of this is unsurprising, I suppose.  As a lawyer, with a bent towards judicial restraint, [Read More...]

Universalism and Our Subpar World? (by Jeff Cook)

This post continues Jeff Cook’s series on universalism. To repeat something I have said before, I’ve become convinced this year that the traditional view of hell will not last as a dominant theory among scholars for much longer. The arguments for the traditional hell fail so spectacularly and their conclusions are so repugnant that the [Read More...]

Good Cop, Good Cop

Peter Holley: When Roeland Park police officer Mark Engravalle was dispatched to a local Wal-Mart after a woman was caught shoplifting on Monday, he could have treated the incident like any other petty theft. Instead of handcuffing Sarah Robinson and taking her to jail, however, he started a conversation with the mother of six, who [Read More...]

Prayer for the Week

O Lord, mercifully receive the prayers of your people who call upon you, and grant that they may know and understand what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to accomplish them; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now [Read More...]

A Question for Marilynne Robinson

Source: INTERVIEWER Do you feel like there’s something you’ve missed out on in life? ROBINSON There’s always something that I feel I’ve missed. I should travel more, for instance. I went to Paris last fall, which was a great departure for me. I flew Air India, which in itself was quite remarkable. I had a [Read More...]

Weekly Meanderings, 11 July 2015

Books not bullets! By Malala Yousafzai The Education For All Global Monitoring Report found it would take $39 billion annually. It seems like a big number, an impossible number. In reality, it represents what world governments spend on their militaries in just eight days. In eight days we spend as much on making war as it would [Read More...]

Tuition Debts Revealed

See this from WaPo? Take a look at the article at the link: [Read more...]

A Solitary Existence

Marilynne Robinson: I don’t think I could want something else. For instance, I’m kind of a solitary. This would not satisfy everyone’s hopes, but for me it’s a lovely thing. I recognize the satisfactions of a more socially enmeshed existence than I cultivate, but I go days without hearing another human voice and never notice [Read More...]

Santiago, a Christ Figure? (by John Frye)

From a website titled “Spark Notes” about Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea, I learned the following: “In order to suggest the profundity of the old man’s sacrifice and the glory that derives from it, Hemingway purposefully likens Santiago to Christ, who, according to Christian theology, gave his life for the greater glory [Read More...]

Marriage before the Fall (Tim and Anne Evans, from Arise

From Arise Tim + Anne Evans are co-authors of Together: Reclaiming Co-Leadership in Marriage. They have been married thirty-nine years and continue to passionately explore God’s marriage mystery of two becoming one. They are both ordained ministers and each have master and doctor of practical ministries diplomas from Wagner Leadership Institute. They are parents, grandparents, [Read More...]

Eight Elements of Creative People

Brigid Schulte: And we do know from scientific study that altering aspects of your environment can help you. 1. Positive mood: There is a lot of research going back 20, 30 years showing that being in a positive mood improves creativity. A good mood literally expands the scope of your thought. 2. Large spaces: 3. Avoid sharp objects: 4. The [Read More...]

In the Image of God (RJS)

The final chapter of John Walton’s new book The Lost World of Adam and Eve: Genesis 2-3 and the Human Origins Debate looks at the ways in which humans are distinct creatures and a special creation of God. In discussing human origins, Walton draws a distinction between evolution in the sense material continuity and gradual [Read More...]

Saving Salvation from Bad Ideas

Some are allergic to the term “salvation” because of how they were treated by it in their churches while others glory in the term because how they were treated by it in their churches. But here is one (almost) indisputable claim about salvation: most operate on one side of the term. That is, the spectrum [Read More...]

America’s Tiny House Movement

Nina Patel: America is having a big love affair with tiny houses. There are television shows: “Tiny House Nation” and “Tiny House Hunters.” There are movies: “Tiny: A Story About Living Small” and “Small Is Beautiful: A Tiny House Documentary.” Pinterest has more than 900 boards devoted to tiny houses, and design Web site Houzz showcases thousands [Read More...]

A New Metric (by Jonathan Storment)

A New Metric, by Jonathan Storment For the past 12 years, I have worked only at large churches.  This is neither a bragging statement nor a dismissive one.  Frankly, they are the only churches that would hire me.  And they are great churches.  They care about the right things, and they want to serve God [Read More...]