May 8, 2019

David R. Swartz interviews David Kirkpatrick about his new book “A Gospel for the Poor” Read more

May 7, 2019

One of our resident Trekkies examines the complicated relationship between religion and the science fiction series Star Trek. Read more

May 6, 2019

The state of Qatar, which protrudes into the Persian Gulf with Saudi Arabia to its south and Iran to its north, is only a little larger than Connecticut. Despite its size, however, it is an excellent place to observe current affairs, not least those pertaining to religion. This is what I learned during a recent visit to Doha’s decade-old International Centre for Interfaith Dialogue—among the first institution of its kind in the religiously conservative, historically inward-looking Gulf States. Qatar became… Read more

May 4, 2019

Kristin, Beth, and Chris pay tribute to writer Rachel Held Evans, who died this morning at age 37. Read more

May 3, 2019

I have been thinking about how Paul’s letters came to be collected and remembered. If anyone says the following post is pure speculation, which can neither be tested nor proven, they would be right. It’s an imaginative exercise, no more. Think of it as a detective story. To begin with solid facts, or things we can say with high confidence. Probably in the 90s AD, Luke was composing his Book of Acts, and he certainly did not know Paul’s letters… Read more

May 2, 2019

This past weekend, nearly 2,000 people made the annual pilgrimage to Manzanar, one of the concentration camps where the U.S. government incarcerated Japanese Americans during the Second World War. The pilgrimage was partly an act of historical commemoration: this year marked the fiftieth anniversary of the first pilgrimage to Manzanar, and 77 years have passed since President Roosevelt’s issuing of Executive Orders 9066, which authorized the forced removal of thousands of Japanese Americans on the West Coast.   But in… Read more

May 1, 2019

  This is revised from my Ancient Bench archives. I wanted to post it again, however, because it really belongs in my Disrupting Christian Patriarchy series. It shows that Christian women speaking out on behalf of women is not a new “feminist” agenda, it has roots deep in the Christian past. It shows how a woman recognized that ideas about women matter; that ideas about women shape the treatment of women. I wish more evangelical women would realize this today…. Read more

April 30, 2019

Citing a changed name for Fort Snelling, Minnesota legislators recently voted to slash the budget of the state’s impressive historical society. Chris explains why such critics misunderstand history in general and military history in particular. Read more

April 29, 2019

I have been writing about different traditions of the Resurrection and what I understand to be the late appearance of stories involving Mary Magdalene as a witness of the Resurrection. Modern scholars devote much attention to the developing story of Mary Magdalene, commonly emphasizing how her early importance was denied and denigrated by a patriarchal church. I wonder if we have this upside down? Instead of being demoted and denigrated, women were rather being advanced and built up as the… Read more

April 26, 2019

A golden rule when reading the New York Times is never to be shocked by idiocy. That is what they are, and what they do. But I do confess to breaking my own rule in reading a recent Eastertide article about depictions of Jesus, by one Eric Copage. I am by no means the only person to point this out, but how the article got through the editorial process defies belief. Yes, I’m shocked. The vast majority of Mr. Copage’s… Read more

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