Review of Evangelicalism in America by Randall Balmer

Review of Evangelicalism in America by Randall BalmerI consider Randall Balmer a friend; I hope we will still be friends after I publish this review of his most recent book which is scheduled to “hit the bookstore shelves” (meaning “be available for purchase by the general public”) on October 1 this year (2016). I also hope to remain friends with my friends at Baylor University Press.*Sidebar: The opinions expressed here are my own (or those of the guest writer); I do not speak for any ot … [Read more...]

“#Some Lives Matter” and Calvinism: My Response to the T-Shirt

“#Some Lives Matter” and Calvinism: My Response to the T-shirtRecently several people have sent me photos of a T-shirt that displays on its back the slogan “#Some Lives Matter” and below that the word “Calvinism.” Obviously, it’s someone’s idea of a cutesy critique of Calvinism piggy-backing on the war of slogans I alluded to in my immediately preceding post here. So here are my thoughts about it.First, I take “Black Lives Matter”—both as a slogan and a movement—so seriously that I would … [Read more...]

All Lives Matter (But Do Some Matter More Than Others?)

All Lives Matter (But Do Some Matter More Than Others?)For those readers outside the United States a bit of background will help—before I express today’s opinion. American readers familiar with the current controversy over “Black Lives Matter” versus “All Lives Matter”—as slogans—can skip this second paragraph (first content paragraph):A few years ago, here in the U.S., a series of notorious police (and other) shootings of young black men began to occur. Well, when it began and how common … [Read more...]

An Open Letter to the Members of the Evangelical Theological Society from Stanley N. Gundry

WHENCE AND WHITHER ETS?An Open Letter to the Members of ETSStanley N. GundryPresident of the Evangelical Theological Society, 1978The following resolutions were adopted in the last business session of the 2015 national meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society:(1)  We affirm that all persons are created in the image and likeness of God and thus possess inherent dignity and worth.(2)  We affirm that marriage is the covenantal union of one man and one woman, for l … [Read more...]

Why Colin Kaepernick’s Protest Is More Pro-American than His Critics’

Why Colin Kaepernick’s Protest Is More Pro-American than His Critics’The great thing about America is…that here people have the right to protest things going on in America by not standing during the national anthem and by not saluting the American flag.To be sure, Americans also have the right to criticize such persons and their protests, but condemning them as “traitors” is un-American. In fact, it smacks of totalitarianism.When an American sings the national anthem or salutes the Am … [Read more...]

Why Are We So Afraid of Emotion in Worship?

Why Are We So Afraid of Emotion in Worship?Who’s “we?” Well, of course, I mean we white American evangelicals and especially Baptists/baptists. (For those not “in the know,” “baptist” refers to Baptists  and all who don’t call themselves “Baptists” but hold basic Baptist conviction.)The other day I was worshiping with some fellow American evangelical Christians, mostly baptists, and the worship leader had us sing a particularly moving modern hymn about the cross and the atonement. I was s … [Read more...]

Evangelical Christian Thoughts about “Mindfulness”

Evangelical Christian Thoughts about “Mindfulness”Recently I had the privilege of reading a fine doctoral dissertation by a brilliant young Christian social worker and counselor about “Mindfulness.” I had already seen and heard the term but was not fully aware of what it meant. Her dissertation argued, very cogently, that, even though contemporary Mindfulness is often rooted in Buddhism, Christians can use it helpfully and that there are historical Christian precedents for it in especially Ch … [Read more...]