September 10, 2023

We’ve heard it said, “you can’t fix stupid.” That’s a grim assessment. My good buddy Bob gave me reason for hope awhile back when he sent me an article with a different take on the issue – from the mind of German Christian theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, no less. Bonhoeffer was a German Lutheran pastor and theologian, and and a vocal critic of Hitler’s program. When most of the Church in Germany was silent, complicit, or even actively pro-Nazi, Bonhoeffer and... Read more

September 7, 2023

Is this water apartheid? Recent viral videos show the Israeli Civil Administration overseeing Israeli soldiers and workers as they fill Palestinian water wells with cement – in the middle of a sweltering summer, and with no reasonable alternative for the Palestinians to obtain water.  Christians, we should care deeply about this situation! Is modern Israel really the apple of God’s eye, if this is how it behaves? Does it deserve our unconditional support? Are Palestinians perhaps “the least of these,”... Read more

September 2, 2023

The hate crimes cycle happens like clockwork in this country: We get news of a mass shooting that has just occurred – details are sparse. Soon, we’re told the perpetrator was a white male, and the victims were non-white. Soon, a manifesto, or a pattern or evidence of racist attitudes, is discovered, and the shooting is labeled a “hate crime.” Immediately, there are white people on social media who say “hate is hate, violence is violence, why bring race into... Read more

August 22, 2023

“Thou shalt not covet” is the theme of our final commandment (or commandments, if you’re Lutheran), and it has some major implications – for those willing to think deeply. Those of you who have been with me from the beginning of this Ten Commandments series know that we are investigating the Christian nationalist idea that if we’d only build our country on our founding documents plus Christian texts like the Ten Commandments (which, curiously, is found in the Hebrew/Old Testament),... Read more

August 16, 2023

We’ve been making our way through the Ten Commandments (full series here) to see whether Christian nationalists are correct in their hypothesis that a nation built on America’s founding documents and ruled by the Ten Commandments would make us great again. Last time, we looked at some of the lies that our founding fathers, Abraham Lincoln, and white Southerners told themselves about Black people. These were not harmless, little white lies (pun intended), but lies designed to rob Black people of... Read more

August 13, 2023

Christian nationalism calls us to merge our national founding documents with Christianity’s “key” documents. The Declaration of Independence (et al) meets the Ten Commandments (et al). Christian nationalists claim that America, ruled effectively by both sets of documents in combination, would make America great again. We’ve been making our way through the Ten Commandments (full series here) to see whether they are compatible, and whether a Ten Commandments-based country would really be a Christian nationalist’s dream come true. We’re almost... Read more

July 30, 2023

Today, we boldly go where few Americans have willingly gone before: a discussion of white supremacy and slavery. More precisely, we’ll be talking about reparations. Take a deep breath. (The following words challenge me, as I imagine they will challenge you.) Not sure Christianity was complicit in the enslavement of human beings? Read The Color of Compromise by Jemar Tisby. He will give you all the background you need. But today, I will be referencing Reparations: a Christian Call for... Read more

July 23, 2023

For the past few days, we’ve been discussing issues related to “thou shalt not commit adultery,” covering some of the more conservative beliefs and practices around marriage (here) and the question of divorce (here). Today we will look at gay marriage, a right that, much like women’s hard-earned right to choose abortion, could easily disappear if conservative Christians get their way. Not just conservatives, but also many progressive Christians struggle with the issue of same-sex marriage, as we’ve been taught... Read more

July 20, 2023

In this second installment of Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery vs. U.S. Constitution, we will look at one popular conservative website, and how it approaches the topic of divorce, and then consider the subtext of some of Jesus’ teachings. If you missed my last post, Toxic Masculinity Discusses Marriage, you might want to start there, as today’s post builds on that content. Modern Western Christianity is much different from Bible times, to say the least. Everything has changed – some... Read more

July 17, 2023

It’s time for the topic you’ve all been waiting for: “thou shalt not commit adultery.” It just so happens that in the last few days, I binge- (and cringe-) watched “Shiny Happy People: Duggar family secrets.” It’s an important miniseries (available on Amazon Prime) about the Duggars (of “19 Kids and Counting” fame), their pal (disgraced) Bill Gothard, and the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP). My upbringing was conservative, but not that conservative. However, much of the show’s content... Read more

Browse Our Archives