Sex Abuse, the First Stone, Judge Not, and All That

On Sunday I put up a post about Voice of the Martyrs' president, Tom White, who recently committed suicide in the midst of being investigated for allegedly sexually molesting a ten year old girl. This post generated a lot of comments, mostly from conservative religious commenters who are not, to my knowledge, regular readers of my blog. I've collected together some of the comments I received and have put them together into a post. I will finish with a short dictionary of arguments that … [Read more...]

Creationism: Fitting Science into the Bible

Growing up, I honestly thought that creationism was a scientific theory. I thought that if you looked at the evidence out there and evaluated it honestly and without bias, it would point to a young earth creation. I thought that if, say, a Muslim or a Hindu or a Taoist looked at the earth without preconceived evolutionary ideas, they would conclude that it was created six thousand years ago and destroyed by a flood fifteen hundred years later, and that genetics similarly showed that humans all de … [Read more...]

Worthwhile Reads: Abortion, Laws, and Biblical Translation

I recently saw two more articles on new proposed anti-abortion laws:Tennessee bill would expose identity of abortion providers and possibly patientsArizona legislator would like to make women watch abortions before they having themI have written before that even though opposition to abortion was originally born out of a desire to control women, there was an intentional shift in this rhetoric in the 1980s leading to a new focus on "saving babies," and that many if not most of those … [Read more...]

Can you lose your salvation?

Several commenters on recent posts have brought this topic up, so I though I'd address it. What you're going to get here is the short and dirty version, and it's also not completely comprehensive. You have to remember that theologians have spend almost two thousand years arguing about this and that Christianity is currently so splintered that there is almost nothing all Christians agree on.Catholics say yesTo be saved, one must be in "a state of grace." God gives his followers grace through … [Read more...]

Prince of Egypt modifies a Bible story

I recently re-watched the 1998 animated movie Prince of Egypt. I've always loved that movie, with its beautiful animation and awesome songs (it's a bit of a musical). And that was all just as I remembered it, and just as moving. But there was one thing I noticed this time through that I don't remember noticing before. Specifically, the movie has a significant plot change from the original Biblical story of Moses on which it is based.The basic layout is that the Hebrews are slaves in Egypt, a … [Read more...]

Are Tornadoes the “Fingers of God”?

Conservative Christian theologian John Piper recently weighed in on the rash of tornadoes that hit the Midwest and South last week. He had this to say: Why would God reach down his hand and drag his fierce fingers across rural America killing at least 38 people with 90 tornadoes in 12 states, and leaving some small towns with scarcely a building standing, including churches?If God has a quarrel with America, wouldn’t Washington, D.C., or Las Vegas, or Minneapolis, or Hollywood be a more l … [Read more...]

Salvation Anxiety and the Unforgivable Sin

There's one thing that always used to bother me as an evangelical. Well, there are several things, but this one in particular. Jesus came to earth to die on the cross so that sins might be forgiven, but he also stated that there was an unforgivable sin. You could be forgiven all manners of transgression except this one. To the one who committed the unforgivable sin, the doors of heaven were forever shut.The reason this bothered me was that I wanted to be completely sure of what this sin was … [Read more...]