The Naked Public Square and a Multi-faith Wardrobe

Multicolored clothes on wooden hangers

Listen to this piece.Richard John Neuhaus wrote about the naked public square and the hostility toward traditional values and religion. He feared the death of democracy resulting from such hostility and called for a public philosophy that is grounded in the Judeo-Christian religious heritage. While the Judeo-Christian religious heritage has certainly shaped our democratic society, we live increasingly in a multi-faith world here in the States. I believe we need to make sure that we who … [Read more...]

A Birthday Wish: Jesus, Buddha and the Non-Grasping Way

PLM streetcar

Listen to this piece.Today is my birthday. As I look back upon my many years of life and look forward toward the future, I wish and hope that I will pursue life more fully with an open hand, not a clenched fist.So often, I find people, myself included, trying to clutch onto life to squeeze and suck as much juice out of the turnip of existence before it is all gone. As a result, we often if not always miss life in the process. It is very difficult to enjoy and experience life as it comes … [Read more...]

Christian Zionism—Is It Biblical?

CE v7n1 Covers Final (web crop) large

Listen to this piece.This essay is more academic in tone than my usual blog posts. I trust my readers will find it an intriguing departure (UPDATE on 3/8/13: The form of Christian Zionism that I am defining and reflecting upon in this article is of the Dispensationalist variety. I recognize that while it is widespread, it is not the only form of Christian Zionism).Is Christian Zionism biblical? I suppose it all depends on what you mean by biblical. Based on a literal reading of the … [Read more...]

The Sequester and Saturday Night Live

iStock_000001687490XSmall-300x199--Lady Liberty

Listen to this piece.Upon reading news on the sequester, you might not know whether to laugh or cry. There have been so many predictions, so much name-calling and finger pointing. I am not sure who to believe.Two items stood out to me in a CBS News article on the sequester. First, according to the article, "Most entitlement programs are exempt." The article goes on to say, "During the negotiations that produced the sequester, Democrats successfully pushed to exempt most forms of … [Read more...]

Jesus, Darwin and Donald Trump, Part II

Donald Trump--iStock_000016068158XSmall

Listen to this piece.In “Jesus, Darwin and Donald Trump” (Part I), I conclude by saying that Evangelicalism may have been far more successful in generating support for the evolutionary supremacy of the market system than in challenging Darwin’s Origin of Species. There I was referring to Gordon Bigelow’s Harper’s Magazine claim that Evangelicals don’t simply assume the market’s gospel truthfulness but also promote it. In Bigelow’s estimation, Evangelicals have been responsible for cultivating … [Read more...]

The Justice Conference, Part 5: Justice Isn’t Sexy, But It’s Beautiful

Justice Conf

Listen to this piece.Is justice the latest Evangelical church growth technique or tool? Do people find it sexy and cool to be associated with justice issues? Is the justice movement a fad or is it truly long-lasting? We need to guard against cynicism on the one hand and a superficial approach to justice on the other hand. I hold out hope for this new justice movement to the extent that we build on the shoulders of Jesus and righteous elders who have gone before us. Their just lives are not … [Read more...]

The Justice Conference, Part 4: Sustaining Jesus’ Justice Movement

Justice Conf

I'm at The Justice Conference in Philadelphia this week. I wrote a series of posts several months ago reflecting on themes related to the pre-conference session "Sustaining a Justice Movement: how did John M. Perkins, Mother Teresa, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer do it?" which I will be leading on today at 9am. I'm going to reprint those pieces this week in hopes that we might all be thinking through these matters together. If you will be in Philly, I hope you'll come to my session! If not, I would lov … [Read more...]