November 24, 2018

Yesterday my friend and mentor Brian Zahnd got a lot of flak for tweeting about his church having both ICE agents and undocumented immigrants in its pews. The same day, dozens of members of the CityWell church in my hometown of Durham, NC were arrested for blocking an ICE van when ICE agents captured a church member who had been living in sanctuary in the church for almost a year. So what does it look like to be a faithful… Read more

November 20, 2018

I debated whether to call this a love letter or an open letter. Love letter feels like a very southern white evangelical thing to call something that involves critical reflection and wrestling with concerns. But open letter feels too adversarial. We write open letters to celebrities with big platforms who might not engage us in direct conversation otherwise. If you’ve been active in ex-evangelical Twitter lately, I imagine you already know what I’m going to write about. I’ve watched two… Read more

November 9, 2018

Last weekend was the first-ever global legislative assembly for the Wesleyan Covenant Association, the United Methodist traditionalist caucus group. It was for all practical purposes, the inauguration of a new denomination. At their assembly, they adopted a resolution saying they would be “forced to leave” the United Methodist Church if the One Church Plan which allows for regional LGBTQ inclusion is adopted at the February 2019 General Conference. There has been talk from traditionalists for at least the past decade… Read more

November 2, 2018

I am Cain; And my altar doesn’t burn. Oh it burns some As long as I’m holding the lighter And scorching my thumb But it never catches on its own. I went with my brother Abel to the woods; We gathered the same sticks; We used the same amount of lighter fluid; And his offering caught fire and multiplied. Abel started a church in his living room With five of his friends And they prayed in circles around their neighborhood… Read more

October 31, 2018

The continuous meta-debate within the United Methodist debate is to ask: what are we really debating about? There are many ways to answer that question, some more deceitful and cynical than others. I would propose that one way to understand our disagreement is that it’s a question of whether John Wesley’s 18th century theological presuppositions are permanently normative for United Methodism. Does whatever the Methodist historians tell us about what John Wesley believed have to be what we believe also?… Read more

October 29, 2018

If anyone on the Internet remains blissfully unaware, the Babylon Bee is a Calvinist satire website that makes fun of gay people, transgender people, feminists, Joel Osteen, Jen Hatmaker, and other people they disdain. Sometimes they write things that are funny. But often, their satire is pretty mean-spirited and cruel. A whole lot of Christians share their stuff on the Internet. But this past week, they did something that is starting to get them in a lot of trouble. They… Read more

October 28, 2018

White supremacist in Charlottesville [Wikimedia C.C.]The gunman who killed 11 people this weekend at the Tree of Life Synagogue did what he did because he had been fed the narrative that Jewish people are somehow secretly funding the massive migration of Central Americans to our country. On the same weekend, our vice president Mike Pence announced at a rally that the Honduran refugee caravan was being secretly funded by “globalists.” If I were Mike Pence’s pastor, I would have a… Read more

October 16, 2018

First, I’m not sure whether you actually exist. You may be the invention of the same moderate pundits who have been writing all those feature pieces interviewing the same five working class white voters in the same mom and pop diner in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Supposedly according to a recent survey, 25% of our population self-identify as ardent conservatives and 5% as progressive activists, while the rest are an “exhausted majority” who are more opposed to political correctness than any… Read more

October 8, 2018

Today is the day our country celebrates the conquest and genocide of native Americans at the hand of Europeans signified by Christopher Columbus’ “discovery” of the “new world” in 1492. Within a few decades of Columbus’ initial contact, the original inhabitants of the island that Columbus named Hispaniola had been almost entirely wiped out through brutal slavery and genocide. What should bother us a great deal as Christians is the way that the brutality of European colonialism was completely intertwined… Read more

October 3, 2018

Swearing-in Ceremony for Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Oval. Rose Garden. A single line from a statement from one of Brett Kavanaugh’s former college friends has captivated me: “It is the truth that is at stake.” As I wrote a couple of posts ago, we are living through a crisis of truth. Though many other things disturbed me about Kavanaugh’s nomination hearing, it really bothered me that he couldn’t even concede that… Read more

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