Hostile to Art?

I thought there were some interesting thoughts in a recent article interviewing Billy Smiley, formerly of the band White Heart and now of The Union of Sinners and Saints: Faith and spirituality can barely survive religion. Imagine how tough it is for art… I listen to Christian music now and ask, “Where are the poets? [Read More…]

Mapping the Origins Debate

I am grateful to IVP for sending me a gratis review copy of Gerald Rau’s book Mapping the Origins Debate. The book’s subtitle refers to the “Beginning of Everything,” but the book in fact looks at a number of quite distinct beginnings – the beginning of the universe, of life, of species, and of humans. Given [Read More…]

After the Monkey Trial

I am grateful to Fordham Press for sending me a gratis review copy of Christopher Rios’ book After the Monkey Trial. The book in fact begins its historical survey before the famous Scopes trial, and offers a survey of fundamentalist, Evangelical, and other Christian responses to Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution and subsequent scientific work on [Read More…]

Celebrating America’s Brexit

Roger Wolsey shared the cartoon above. In my Sunday school class yesterday, I found myself pondering the question of how faith and patriotism relate to one another.  The matter is not as simple even as my own American Baptist tradition might seem to make it by advocating separation. I do think that “separation of church and state” [Read More…]

Can Catholics Be Vegans?

The Bizarro cartoon poses an interesting question for Catholic vegans and vegetarians who claim to believe in transubstantiation. Is communion an exception to eating no flesh? HT Hemant Mehta [Read more…]

Struggling with Homosexuality

There are a lot of people in our time who can be described as “struggling with homosexuality.” In some cases, it is individuals struggling with their own sexuality. But in far more cases, it seems there are people who are heterosexuals and who are nonetheless ‘struggling with homosexuality’ – struggling to read the Bible in [Read More…]

James T. Kirk vs. Jesus: Smackdown

Jim Davila drew attention to an article in The Times of Israel, highlighting some fascinating details in the new book The Fifty-Year Mission: The First Twenty-Five Years. The part of the article that really grabbed me begins with a quote from Richard Colla: “By the time they got into the alien’s presence, it manifested itself and said, ‘Do [Read More…]

Repairing the Tomb of Christ

Richard Engel has a fascinating report about the much-needed repairs to the part of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher that is traditionally identified as the tomb of Jesus, and the historic way that this is resulting in collaboration between Christian denominations that have often fought more than they have cooperated. Click through to get [Read More…]

A Baptist Approach to Science Fiction

I saw the above meme on Facebook, and was struck by several aspects of it. First, the treatment of allegiance to sci-fi franchises as comparable to religion caught my attention. And then I started thinking about this “Baptist” approach which emphasizes that adherence is a choice that one should make when one is able to [Read More…]