What Kind of Gospel Do You Preach?

We all preach a gospel, not just TV evangelists. The question is: what kind of gospel do you preach and believe in? In The Rolling Stones’ song “All Down the Line,” Mick Jagger sings of needing a “sanctified girl” with a mind that’s sanctified to help him in the here and now, and how every once in a while he needs a “shot of salvation.” In Caddy Shack, Bill Murray’s character Carl Spackler talks about receiving from the Dalai Lama the blessing of “total consciousness” when he dies for having cadd … [Read more...]

Post-Ascension to the Presidency: Why All the Uproar?

The rain fell at the inauguration of U.S. President Donald J. Trump. Supporters and critics interpreted the rainfall differently: the former as a good omen and the latter as a bad omen (Refer here and here). While not quite the occasion of a downpour, the event did lead to an ensuing uproar.In addition to the strong differences of opinion over the symbolic import of the weather, debate also raged over the size of the crowds in Washington, D.C. during President Trump’s inaugural and President … [Read more...]

After Politics, How Much Emotional Space Is Left?

Michael Wear was President Obama’s director of his 2012 faith-outreach efforts. He is also a theologically conservative evangelical Christian. Some people might find that non-partisan placement a bit odd or problematic.Wear remarked in a recent interview with The Atlantic: One of the things I found at the White House and since I left is this class of people who aren’t driving the political decisions right now, and have significant forces against them, but who are not satisfied with the poli … [Read more...]

Jesus Is the Ultimate Humanist

“Humanism” is a dirty word in some Christian circles. It is often associated with secular humanism, which connotes humans liberated from the stifling constraints of religion and enslaving concepts of deity.The irony is that theologians like John Calvin for whom God was sovereignly involved in the affairs of humanity was a Christian humanist. He was critical of received traditions and went back to the original languages and sources for his arguments. Moreover, he affirmed humans as created in … [Read more...]

Pre-Inauguration: We Need to Move On—But How?

Americans are divided into several camps as a nation over Mr. Trump’s election victory, including those who are ecstatic, those who equivocate, those who have extricated themselves from the political process entirely, and those who are enraged.For some, moving forward involves making good on the best situation. For others, it involves making the best of a less than ideal situation. For still others, it involves getting by regardless and whatever the political situation. And finally, there a … [Read more...]

When Jesus Returns, Will He Find Faith or Technology?

When Jesus returns to earth, will he find faith? Perhaps not, but he may find technology. I thought about this topic while listening to an interview where Martin Scorsese discusses his new movie Silence, his own personal story, and faith. Refer here for the interview.The film is based on Shusaku Endo’s book by the same title (I recently wrote about the movie in a post titled “Apostasy: Would You Ever Renounce Your Faith? Reflections on the Movie ‘Silence’”). The movie chronicles two Jesuit mi … [Read more...]

Jesus Is Like a Rich Oriental Tapestry—Marvel at His Pattern

Many Christians celebrate the Epiphany of the Lord as well as his Baptism today. There is so much to marvel at when considering Jesus’ worth and these two events.Technically speaking, the Feast of Epiphany falls on January 6th, the twelfth day of Christmas. And yet, as a few articles referenced in this blog post point out, some churches move the celebration to the closest Sunday (today—January 8th). Epiphany marks the occasion of the manifestation of God’s Son who became human as Jesus. Meani … [Read more...]