Roger Lundin comments on the ironies of evangelical support for ED Hirsch and its frequent suspicion, if not outright condemnation, of Gadamer: “There are manifold ironies to the conservative embrace of Hirsch and spurning of Gadamer. At their heart is the fact that Hirsch’s theory of . . . . Continue Reading »

I and We

Auden said that “protestantism is correcte in affirming that the We are of society” is false unless each individual “can say I am .” At the same time, what he called catholicism is also correct that anyone who cannot “join with others in saying We does not know the . . . . Continue Reading »

Pop Gratitude

That Amazon search confirmed my suspicion: Gratitude is a common topic of inspirational literature. You can get gratitude journals, gratitude calendars, gratitude guides, gratitude cards, gratitude with attitude books, probably gratitude mugs and teacups and bumperstickers and bracelets and decals . . . . Continue Reading »


Searching Amazon, I find that one Christine A. Adams has written a small book on gratitude for a book series called “Elf Self-Help” (I’m not making this up). Perhaps someone can gently inform Ms Adams that the whole point of gratitude is that someone else has helped. . . . . Continue Reading »

A Christian Vice?

In a 1917 article, Joseph William Hewitt notes that the Greeks did not view ingratitude with the same horror as modern writers (among modern writers, he lists Thomas Elyot, Shakespeare, and the Spectator ). From the sixteenth century to the early twentieth, “we find a deep, indeed an extreme, . . . . Continue Reading »


Kenneth Burke wisely remarks that “Every document bequeathed us by history must be treated as a strategy for encompassing a situation,” an “answer or rejoinder to assertions current in the situation in which it arose.” He goes on to compare our entry into history to a late . . . . Continue Reading »

Anti-Linguistic Turn

Philosophers claim that European/American thought has gone through a linguistic turn in the last several decades. The truth is the opposite. Rorty says, “The world does not speak. Only we do. The world can, once we have programmed ourselves with a language, cause us to hold beliefs. But it . . . . Continue Reading »

Sermon notes, Fourth Sunday of Advent

INTRODUCTION While Herod and Jerusalem fear the news of the birth of Jesus, the Magi worship Him and rejoice (2:10). Here is another inversion of the original exodus story, and a preview of the gospel story: Jews reject their deliverer, but the Gentiles embrace Him. THE TEXT “Now after Jesus . . . . Continue Reading »

Exhortation, Third Sunday of Advent

For most Americans, Christmas means warm feelings, forgiveness, kindness, generosity. It means putting our differences aside and getting along. Celebrating Christmas means celebrating liberalism and toleration. As in so many ways, our celebration of Christmas borrows scraps from the table of . . . . Continue Reading »