YouTube and the God of Job


(Note: I agree with Duncan today. I don't need to add to the cacophony on the events in Boston, but "feel like talking about anything else is just weird." So I'm pre-empting this week's Left Behind Friday post and replacing it with the following. Feel free to ignore the idiosyncratic theologizing in the post below and just enjoy the links.) I love the book of Job, which features, among other things, a longer and more celebratory creation account than the ones in Genesis. Job is a play … [Read more...]

Lord won’t you tell us, tell us what does it mean

Scott Paeth shares a quote from the great theologian Karl Barth on listening to the voice of God: God may speak to us through Russian Communism, through a flute concerto, through a blossoming shrub or through a dead dog. We shall do well to listen to him if he really does so. And that choice of examples struck me kind of funny, seemed kind of funny sir to me. It reminded me of what another pretty good theologian once wrote about the silence of God: God may speak to us, and if God … [Read more...]

Please stop looking for the ‘original sin’ gene


Think Christian has been running a mini-forum on the question of a "historical Adam." Dennis Venema's contribution was quite helpful for squarely stating that science finds the idea of a single "Adam and Eve" couple as the ancestors of all of humanity to be extremely, and increasingly, unlikely. I liked Venema's piece a lot, particularly this bit: Some Christian groups are beginning to require denying these findings as part of their theology. In particular, there is a concern that moving … [Read more...]

Biblical Lysenkoism: Has Al Mohler ever read all four Gospels?


Here are some wise words from J.R. Daniel Kirk in 2011 on pastors and the Synoptic Problem: It is your pastoral responsibility to help people recognize that the Bible we actually have, rather than the Bible of our imaginations, is the word of God. If you don’t give your people a category for this kind of diverse Bible being the word of God, then you will create a false sense of connection between a supposedly uniform, univocal Bible and the Christian faith as such. So what happens when … [Read more...]

The Bible, Steve Chalke, Wilberforce and ‘The Civil War as a Theological Crisis’


"How has the whole Church found itself believing something about slavery which is so at odds with the Bible?" prominent British evangelical Steve Chalke asks. Chalke asked that in his essay, "A Matter of Integrity: The Church, sexuality, inclusion and an open conversation." That's the essay in which Chalke argues for his fellow Christians to begin recognizing, and celebrating, same-sex marriages. It's the essay, in other words, that resulted in "prominent British evangelical Steve Chalke" … [Read more...]

Survey hints at the temptation to lie about temptation

Like many people my age, my first introduction to Aristotle's ethics came by way of Thomas Aquinas by way of Billy Batstone's battles against the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man.

The Barna Group has released a study on the "changing state of temptation." It's another one of those self-reporting studies that tells us more about what people want others to think about them than it does about what people are really like. For example: Protestants are tempted more than Catholics (or Americans in general) by eating too much (66 percent vs. 44 percent vs. 55 percent). By contrast, Catholics are tempted more than Protestants (or Americans in general) by gossip (29 percent vs. … [Read more...]

‘May it never be said … that we merely stood by’


"Internationally renowned scholar and teacher of Christian social ethics and feminist theory, Beverly Wildung Harrison, died in Transylvania County Community Hospital in Brevard, North Carolina, on December 15, 2012." That's from the tribute posted this week by Union Theological Seminary, where Dr. Harrison taught from 1967 until 1999. There's a brief tribute at Feminism and Religion, "Mourning the Loss of Beverly Wildung Harrison." And Caryn Riswold has a remembrance, and some excerpts from … [Read more...]

Soul freedom, Baptist baptism, and the knowledge of good and evil


James McGrath responds to Jim West's attempt to play Baptist Enforcer, pointing out that Baptists, by definition, do not and cannot have enforcers. Pretty much the only way to break the rules as a Baptist is to try to enforce them on others. McGrath writes: Jim West has taken it upon himself to try to define away the status of the First Baptist Church of Seattle as a Baptist church. Jim considers their stance on same-sex marriage and their holding of ceremonies marrying people of the … [Read more...]