Global Poverty and Local Religiosity

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By Rabbi Francis Nataf. Many questions still remain as the United Nations completes the review of its Millennium Development Goals (MDG) scheduled for later this year. But perhaps the biggest question should really be former New York mayor, Edward Koch’s, trademark quip about personal performance, “How am I doing?” At the top of the MDGs was halving the number of people subsisting on less than $1.25 a day. And partly because the UN made it a public goal, that milestone was reached well ahead of … [Read more...]

Time for a New Political Expression

By Jyl Hall Smith.It is abundantly clear that Christians have divergent opinions on last week’s Supreme Court rulings regarding gay marriage and the Affordable Care Act. However, what becomes unclear in these times is how much Americans have in common in their political views. Pew research did a 25-year study, published in 2012, on trends in American values. They found that independents are the largest voting block at 38 percent, and that half of all independents, Democrats, and Republicans c … [Read more...]

An Exploration into the Evangelical Obsession with the Unborn

By Kristen Syme.On an April morning in 2008 during my brief stint at Bible college, a strange turn of events unfolded at one of the weekly chapel services. The college president stood sternly behind the pulpit in preparation for an exhortation as congregants entered. Like the prophet Jeremiah warning of the impending destruction of Jerusalem, he bellowed from behind the pulpit, “There is a great scourge that threatens the security of our nation—the time to act is at hand!” That terror that pl … [Read more...]

A Jump Start for Sustained Peacebuilding

Photo by Nutexzles, Shutterstock

By Rev. Robert ChaseFor most Americans, Kazakhstan seems like a faraway place, indeed. But Americans can be quite myopic, blind to much of what goes on in the world beyond its borders. Actually, from a world perspective, Kazakhstan is right in the center of things. Located on the old silk route, straddling Asia and Europe, Kazakhstan is home to well over 100 ethnic groups, a wide variety of cultural expressions and religions. By relinquishing its Soviet stockpile of nuclear weapons in … [Read more...]

Why Christians Should Stand With Israel


By John Hagee. Christians should stand with Israel because the God of the Bible is the God of Covenant. He is a promise-making and a promise-keeping God. Those who claim that God is not accountable to the promises he made to the children of Israel are contradicting the Apostle Paul’s words to the Gentile Christians of the early church: I say then, “Hath God cast away his people? God forbid.” (Romans 11:1, KJV) ... as far as election is concerned, they (Jews) are loved on account of the patri … [Read more...]

“White God”: More Than a Whiff of Transcendence

White God

Reviewed by Douglas Groothuis, Professor of Philosophy, Denver Seminary Dog lovers who watch this exceptional film should arrange to have a cat-loving designated driver take them home. If not, they may weep all the way home, as I did. The Hungarian film, The White God, is an extraordinary thriller from Hungarian writer-director, Kornél Mundruczó. It is not an upbeat dog film, but a visceral drama of love, cruelty, and redemption. Brilliant is not too strong of a word to describe its c … [Read more...]

¡Si, se puede! The Feathered Snake Comes to Bring Spring

temple of warriors

By Mandy Gardner. Southern Mexico, 21 March 2015, 5:17pmThe sky was peppered with clouds, some quite dark and ominous. More worrying than the rain was the concern that Kukulkan would not appear to bring in the new season, but still the people came in droves. Hopeful, they clapped and cheered each time the sun's rays penetrated the clouds, as if their encouragement could coax the shy God from his hiding place. Abandoned for hundreds of years, the old city and its towering limestone spiritual … [Read more...]

The Mar Thoma Church: Gender Equality in the Sacred Space

Anitha along with the bishop and clergy

By Jesudas M. Athyal. This article discusses the wider implications of a major milestone in women’s participation in the Mar Thoma Church (MTC). The denomination is part of the ancient Indian Church that traces its origin to the missionary work of Saint Thomas in south India during the first century AD. Today hundreds of congregations of MTC exist in the diaspora all over the world.  The Church, while accepting at the theological level the full participation of women in all realms, has so far … [Read more...]

Jainism and Sikhism: The Value of Being “Footnote” Traditions

By Brianne Donaldson.In the recently published Norton Anthology of World Religions, there were two notable omissions: the ancient nonviolent Indian tradition of Jainism, and the modern Indian tradition of Sikhism. I noticed the absence (1) because they are two traditions that I study, teach, and write about, and (2) because they are often overshadowed by their subcontinent cousins of Hinduism and Buddhism whose adherents are greater in number, more widely dispersed, and hence, have a more … [Read more...]

Lecrae: A Modern-Day Psalmist Voices the Messiness of Humanity Through Hip-Hop


By Claudia May In the world of Christian hip-hop Lecrae, is a pioneer and a visionary and could even be considered to be the godfather of Christian rap. He has recorded seven highly acclaimed albums and two mixtapes. The recipient of a Grammy, Dove, and Stellar award, he is the co-founder and president of Reach Records, an independent record label dedicated to the creation of quality Christian rap. In October 2014, I had the privilege of meeting Lecrae and interviewing him as he continued … [Read more...]