Suffering Poorly

am glad you feel you are ‘standing still’ in your spiritual life. I should be still better pleased if you felt you were losing ground! Whatever makes for humility is so much to the good.”

Trust Witness

Revelation as Testimony by mats wahlberg eerdmans, 256 pages, $20 T wentieth-century theologians across a great spectrum—Catholic and Protestant, conservative and progressive—were critical of theories of divine revelation based exclusively on propositional truth. They were united not in their . . . . Continue Reading »

In Praise of Wakes

Going to a wake is always unpleasant. For one thing the departed, once embalmed, always looks like a stranger. Thus, the corkboard display of photos of the deceased as a baby, and as a teen, can only emphasize that he is now utterly a fossil. To make things worse, a wake usually comes in one of two . . . . Continue Reading »

Go To Church, Justin Bieber

Justin Bieber famously got his start in the music industry at the age of thirteen after being discovered on YouTube. Several multi-platinum R&B records later, he is now twenty-one, and frequently mocked on Late Night for his bad boy antics, which include: vandalism, an arrest for drag . . . . Continue Reading »

SOS

Many Christians feel homesick for a day when they could be fully Christian in public. A rejection of the Christian faith is solidifying in our laws. The implicit primacy of Christian faith which has spanned centuries in the West is fading. The modern-day followers of Christ cry out as in Palestine . . . . Continue Reading »

Correcting St. John

Don’t get me wrong. I love John’s Gospel, but it has a serious problem. Due to a misreported episode around the resurrection of Christ, which I am hopefully about to fix, the Apostle Thomas has gone around for centuries with a cloud dodging his reputation.In the accepted telling of John’s version, Thomas ends up being the only disciple who doubts that Christ was raised. Come this Second Sunday of the Resurrection, when this reading shows up like clockwork in the lectionary, Thomas is going to get roughed up all over again from church pulpits for his doubt. Don’t be like Thomas, we’ll be told. He did a bad thing. Continue Reading »

George Herbert in Lent

The Anglican pastor and poet George Herbert died of tuberculosis on March 1, 1633, just one month shy of his fortieth birthday. Like his famous contemporary and friend John Donne and his nineteenth-century American echo Emily Dickinson, Herbert did not publish his poems during his lifetime. From . . . . Continue Reading »

Reason’s Faith

I learned in these pages not long ago that it is perilous to express doubts regarding the persuasive power of most natural-law theory in today’s world. Not that I would dream of rehearsing the controversy again; but I will note that, at the time, I took my general point to be not that . . . . Continue Reading »