We’re Arguing Definitions, Not Rights

From First Thoughts

One common misconception in the same-sex marriage debate is the idea that the traditional legal definition of marriage is a violation of equal rights. Since this is an extremely emotionally charged accusation, it’s difficult to get past it into a real discussion of the issue.Here’s the . . . . Continue Reading »

How Our Suffering Glorifies God

From First Thoughts

I’ve been reading Richard Wurmbrand’s Tortured for Christ, a book about the sufferings of Christians under the Communists, particularly Wurmbrand’s own suffering in Romania. This book puts some flesh and bones on what we read about suffering in 1 Peter, enabling us to see with our . . . . Continue Reading »

Evil and the Cross

From First Thoughts

Today we think about an event that was not only the result of evil, but also the reason for allowing evil to exist in the first place. That event is the revealing of the perfection and beauty of God’s grace and righteousness through the demonstration of both on the cross:For all have sinned . . . . Continue Reading »

Moral Blind Spots

From First Thoughts

The Washington Post has an interesting article in its archives: “What will future generations condemn us for?” The author, Kwame Anthony Appiah, notes that throughout history, societies have had moral blind spots:Looking back at such horrors [such as slavery and lynching], it is easy to . . . . Continue Reading »

LOST, God, and the Justice/Grace Problem

From First Thoughts

While it’s still unclear how LOST will ultimately end up, some recent developments seem to provide a good illustration of one way people have chosen to resolve the problem that has plagued humanity throughout history: Deep down, we know we deserve justice from God, but we want grace. How can . . . . Continue Reading »

Evolution Can’t Tell Darwin’s Story

From First Thoughts

Creation, a film about Charles Darwin’s personal life, is not a rant against God or even a story of the heroism of one man crusading for science against religion. Surprisingly, the movie is not polemical. It doesn’t bother to argue against religion, nor does it spend time arguing for the . . . . Continue Reading »

Grateful for God’s Free Gift

From First Thoughts

I saw a disturbing play last weekend.  It was disturbing because it spoke the truth about the condition of man.  Extinction is the story of two men who, for a decade since their friendship began in college, have met annually in Atlantic City to revel in all the drugs, gambling, and women . . . . Continue Reading »

Redemption for Disney’s Belle?

From First Thoughts

Years ago, when I saw Beauty and the Beast on Broadway, I had heard John Mark’s thoughts on the Disney story (and agreed), so I was pleasantly surprised when a song came out of nowhere—a song that doesn’t appear on any of the soundtracks (film or musical)—when Belle leaves . . . . Continue Reading »