It’s my body, and I’ll do what I want to – the myth of private sexual ethics

"We're two consenting adults.  What we do behind a closed door is nobody's business."  There, in those two sentences, you find the prevailing, public, sexual ethic of western civilization.  By "Public Ethic" I mean to say that this is what, collectively, we believe.  There are sexual ethics to the left of this that we reject as a culture (pedophilia, rape, abuse) and to the right ("sexual practice should be confined to expression between a man and woman who are married"), but both sides are … [Read more...]

Keeping Sexual Issues in Proportion: This isn’t baseball – it’s faith!

Baseball was in the news last week and the lesson it offers us has everything to do with how the church and many within it view sexuality.  We desperately need to learn that being the people of God is a higher calling than being a sportswriter.  Unfortunately, it seems that much of the evangelical world doesn't yet know that, and as a result, there are lots of Christ followers on the bench, or worse, on the streets because they've been judged guilty of high crimes along the lines of John 8, … [Read more...]

“Where’s this headed?” The importance of trajectory

I was on a morning walk recently with some friends in the mountains, and met someone on the walk who was visiting one of our neighbors.  We had a delightful conversation about the different things we'd done with our lives.  I told him that prior to living in Seattle I ran an outdoor program that was a blend of "Outward Bound" and "Bible Teaching".  (For those interested in such a program today, the best one I know of is in Austria, and you can learn of it here).  Then, right there, with the … [Read more...]

Focus on the Dysfunctional Family

I love my friend, Larry Shallenberger's paragraph in this post, about the danger of "Christian Church Culture".  He likens God's transforming process to that of a mechanic restoring an old motorcycle, believing that the old rusted bike has its best years ahead of it.  We religious people, meanwhile, tend to handle each other like airport luggage handlers. This leads to the false belief that its better to lower our heads and fit in. Lower our heads and fit in. Covertly demand that, as a … [Read more...]

Big Bibles & High Flying Flags – or the presence of Jesus?

Sometimes, when I go to the movies, I can’t tell the film’s name 24 hours later.   It’s all gone: plot, players, why I bothered to spend $11 to sit in a dark room for two hours.  There are those few, though, that affected me so profoundly that, even now, 26 years later, I can still remember where I was when, unexpected, "The Mission" reshaped my soul. Having grown up in a conservative Christian home, I'd learned, by other names, notions of American Exceptionalism, and that white guys … [Read more...]

Public Vice and Private Virtue

I was privileged to attend the Annual Seattle Pacific Business Breakfast yesterday and listen to David Brooks, a favorite columnist of mine from the NY Times talk about the shift in ethos that's been occurring in our culture over the last fifty years.  In the midst of all that he said so well, one thing stood out to me.  In an after session Q&A, David noted that, when he's on Meet the Press, he'll chat with the appointed spokespeople from both the political left and right chosen to … [Read more...]

Learning to Lead: Lamb-style

It's early - 5:30 or so, when I hear the first birds of morning as light and sound bid me to wake and join the living.  I lay in bed and ponder what Wednesday must have been like for Jesus during that week between the height of popularity and the unified chorus of "crucify him!" spewed from the lips of the jealous, and the angry, and the fearful.  The all knowing Jesus knew of his own impending death.  We know, too, that this was to be the moment in his life when his own will crossed that of … [Read more...]

Women in the Church – Snapshot of censorship and call for repentance

Eldon Epp is the author of a little book entitled Junia:  The First Woman Apostle.  It's a book about a single verse in the bible, Romans 16:7 which reads wildly differently, depending on your translation, because it's fraught (unnecessarily) with controversy.  Since this is a blog post and not a book, I'll summarize Epps conclusions, also offered in Scott McKnights marvelous e-book, Junia is not Alone (about the censure of females voices in Christendom). First the verse, translated … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X