Why I Will Still Not Stop Calling Myself “Evangelical”

Why I Will Still Not Stop Calling Myself “Evangelical”Ever since the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States I have been inundated with questions and suggestions—about the label I still proudly wear: “evangelical Christian.” Many evangelicals who strongly opposed Trump have finally given up that label; for them it was apparently the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back. Their discomfort with the label began long ago—when the media began calling fundamentalists “evan … [Read more...]

Should Christians Worship and Pray together with Non-Christians?

Should Christians Worship and Pray together with Non-Christians?This Thanksgiving Day (November 24) many Christians across America will attend “Union Thanksgiving Services”—prayer services held mostly in Christian churches to thank God for his blessings. These are called “Union” because they involve pastors and laypeople from various denominations. When I was a child in the 1950s and 1960s, in two different cities (we moved from one to another when I was eleven), my family attended such Thank … [Read more...]

Finally, My Thoughts about the 2016 Election

Finally, My Thoughts about the 2016 ElectionRarely am I without words. However, I admit it, since Wednesday morning, November 9 I have been almost speechless about the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States. I did not expect it to happen; I hoped and prayed it would not happen. It did happen.Unlike many people around the world, I did not stay awake to watch the election results on television. I turned to a national network news channel just briefly enough to see that … [Read more...]

Musings about Adolf Hitler based on the Book “Hitler’s Last Witness…”

Musings about Adolf Hitler based on the Book Hitler’s Last Witness: The Memoirs of Hitler’s BodyguardAs faithful readers of this blog know, I have for many years been obsessed with Adolf Hitler. I think he was one of the most interesting people in history. But what really interests me in him is the paradox of the man. On the one hand, of course, he is generally considered to have been one of, if not the, most evil men in world history. On the other hand, by many accounts, especially of peo … [Read more...]

How Denominations Can Survive (If They Should)

How Denominations Can Survive (If They Should)Roger E. OlsonStudy Conference, November, 2015The Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist, and Wesleyan StudiesMessiah CollegeFirst Published: “The Future of Denominations in the Twenty-First Century,” Brethren in Christ History and Life (April, 2016). Re-published by permission.In my first talk entitled “In Defense of Denominations” I explained my own interest in denominations and gave reasons why, in spite of criticisms and p … [Read more...]

“In Defense of Denominationalism”

In Defense of DenominationsRoger E. OlsonStudy Conference, November, 2015The Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist, and Wesleyan StudiesMessiah CollegeFirst Published: “The Future of Denominations in the Twenty-First Century,” Brethren in Christ History and Life (April, 2016). Republished here with permission.The “word on the street” among sociologists of religion is that “denominationalism” is dead in America; we are allegedly deep into a “post-denominationalism age.” P … [Read more...]

Thoughts about Liberation Theologies

 Thoughts about Liberation Theologies*Here is a message I sent to my students in my modern theology class—after our almost three hour discussion of Liberation Theologies. The chapter I refer to is my chapter on Liberation Theologies in The Journey of Modern Theology.I have a few comments I want to make about Liberation Theologies after last evening's passionate discussion about social justice--something I am truly passionate about.However, I do not feel entirely comfortable that we co … [Read more...]