October 10, 2018

A saying I often repeat is this: “Even heretics aren’t idiots.” In other words, we can learn something from anyone, including those whom we disagree with at a fundamental level. This lesson is not must be learned, and we frequently learn it the hard way. Read more

October 3, 2018

Few people are atheists for intellectual reasons. In a recent article, Lisa Gungor explains her husband’s spiritual struggle and slide into atheism. Her comments are refreshingly candid, reflecting all too typical thoughts of many others. Read more

September 26, 2018

Two things usually escape our notice: cognitive biases and theological syncretism. This is not surprising. When you’re generally unfamiliar with an idea, you’re less likely to understand it. What does this mean for us? We are unable to account for our biases and so succumb to theological syncretism rather than healthy contextualization. Definitions and Interpretations The seedbed for my thinking comes from Aaron Chalmers’ exceptional article “The Influence of Cognitive Biases on Biblical Interpretation” (BBR, 26.4). As I argue in… Read more

September 19, 2018

What happens when human relationships move online? How does the web affect our response to praise and shame? We first need to understand why “people” don’t writing posts. Read more

September 12, 2018

Wendel Sun says “union with Christ” is central to New Testament theology. To make that assertion, one had better defend it from the Bible. Otherwise, we should dismiss it such claims as being mere personal preference, a theologian’s “pet doctrine.” Read more

September 5, 2018

whenever I heard phrases like “union with Christ,” I inwardly rolled my eyes. I thought it referred to a mystical concept with little relationship to the Bible and no practical importance for the Christian life. I was so wrong. Thankfully, Wendel Sun has just published a game changing book on the subject. Read more

August 28, 2018

Why does honor matter at a social level? Tamler Sommers’ Why Honor Matters offers several answers worth our consideration. Whatever your views on various social issues, there’s much to appreciate about Sommers’ comments. Sommers’ integrates the insights of multiple disciplines. Rather than sharping an ideological axe, he acknowledges nuance and recognizes the concerns of different groups. Here are a few issues addressed in the book: responding to refuges handling immigration restorative justice Honor, Crime, and Community The author recognizes advantages to… Read more

August 21, 2018

“I never made a sacrifice.” It doesn’t always feel like that. In Love Lost for the Cause of Christ, Brooks looks at three missionaries whose lives shunned the idea that finding “true love” was the most important thing in life. In fact, they found love but were willing to sacrifice it. Read more

August 14, 2018

Have you noticed how people use the word “shame” in different ways? What is the relationship between these perspectives on shame? These questions motivated me to write a newly published article in Themelios called “Have Theologians No Sense of Shame? How the Bible Reconciles Objective and Subjective Shame.” In it, I hope people will better grasp shame’s theological and practical significance.Everyone agrees that shame is a pervasive problem. Yet, in book and articles, we find writers often talk past one… Read more

August 8, 2018

How does honor shape our views of morality? How does not having an honor perspective influence moral behavior? We consider these questions in this third post in a series reviewing Tamler Sommers’ Why Honor Matters. (Click on links for Part 1, Part 2) What are Honor Norms? Sommers explores “norms” commonly found in honor cultures. He first explains, Norms are the rules or principles that govern human behavior within society. Every known society has norms, and human beings have an innate… Read more

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