The Key to Understanding God’s Relationship with the World Now

The Key to Understanding God’s Relationship with the World NowToday (January 5, 2016) I will be engaging in a live and recorded podcast conversation with theologians Tripp Fuller and Philip Clayton on “Homebrewed Christianity”—a web site and organization that appeals to many relatively young, disaffected postevangelicals. Some of my best students have urged both Homebrewed Christianity and me to discover each other. I am not at all averse to that and look forward to the encounter.My assig … [Read more...]

A Look Back and a Look Forward: 2015 and 2016

A Look Back and a Look Forward: 2015 and 20162015 was a year of much activity for me; I appreciate all the opportunities to speak and write—to say nothing of to be with family and friends. I look forward with eager anticipation to 2016 and the opportunities it will bring.I am going to focus on professional activities here. 2015 began with a trip to my home town of Sioux Falls, South Dakota to speak to a class at the University of Sioux Falls about Christianity and social justice on M … [Read more...]

Christianity’s Greatest Enemy

Christianity’s Greatest EnemyChristianity’s greatest enemy is not atheism. Nor is it Islam or any other religion. Nor is it secularism. Nor is it immorality in culture. No, Christianity’s greatest enemy is—complacency.A few months ago an acquaintance struck up a conversation about my blog and mentioned that he thought I must “like stirring the pot.” Yes, I confess that I do. But not for the sake of stirring the pot itself. The point of stirring the pot, so to speak, is to stir people out … [Read more...]

Denomination of the Week: Cumberland Presbyterian Church

Yesterday (December 29, 2015) I was driving in the Hill Country west of Austin, Texas and saw a Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Although I have never attended one, I have had students from that denomination. And I once had an acquaintance who briefly served as the dean of their seminary. What especially interests me about this denomination is its difference from other Presbyterian denominations. And I know a fair amount about Presbyterianism. Not only have a I studied it as a tradition; I have … [Read more...]

Advice I Will Give My Grandson When He Is Twelve (Like Tamir Rice Was)


Dear Beloved Grandson,Be afraid. Be very afraid. You shouldn’t have to be, but in today’s America you need to be constantly on your guard.Or maybe “afraid” isn’t the right word. Be vigilant and very careful. Especially around police.Wait. Don’t hate police; not all of them are your enemies. But given the plethora of police attacks, using deadly force, on black boys and men, be vigilant around them. And that means be vigilant whenever you are out in public.I recently gave you a cel … [Read more...]

Do All Atheists Deny the Same God?

Do All Atheists Deny the Same God?Recently here (December, 2015) I have discussed the controversial question whether Christians and Muslims worship the same God and the not-so-controversial question (that perhaps should be controversial) whether all Christians worship the same God. Now I’ll turn to a question I’ve never heard asked but interests me and I think should interest all thinking people. Do all atheists deny the same God?First of all, let’s carefully examine the concept of “athe … [Read more...]

Denomination of the Week: The Church with No Name (The Truth/Two By Twos)

Denomination of the Week: The Church with No Name (The Truth/Two By Twos)I have had a nearly lifelong fascination with this denomination (which, like many, does not consider itself a denomination). Scholars of American religion often call this the largest single house church movement in North America although no outsider knows how large it actually is. Certainly the denomination’s members do not consider it a “secret” organization, but one of its attractions to scholars and students of Ameri … [Read more...]