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Uncovering the History of the Abortion Debate

On the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court’s 1973 decision legalizing abortion, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg announced her misgivings about the ruling. As a distinguished champion of what the left euphemistically calls “reproductive rights,” Justice Ginsburg was never going to critique the decision on moral grounds; the problem for Ginsburg, rather, was tactical. In her eyes, by running ahead of the people, the now-infamous 1973 decision gave “opponents of access to abortion a target to aim at relentlessly.”

A Tale of Two Cities—And of Two Churches

You will recall the lapidary opening of Dickens’s famous novel of London and Paris in the period of the French Revolution. Headed ‘Book I—Recalled to Life: Chapter I: The Period” it begins: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. . . .” For reasons that will quickly become . . . . Continue Reading »

Mechanized Justice

Justice Through Apologies: Remorse, Reform, and Punishment 
by nick smith
 cambridge, 413 pages, $33 For decades, American Christians have worried about the dwindling room for religion and religiously inspired morals in public life. The church–state debates in which they engage often focus on . . . . Continue Reading »

Justice and Helplessness

I have been trying to understand the justice in God’s speeches in Genesis 3:14-19. For this is the context in which to make sense of the great puzzle I find in his words to the woman: “Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you” (3:16). It is, strikingly, the first time . . . . Continue Reading »

Sexual Desire and Justice

One of the deepest puzzles I find in the book of Genesis is its treatment of sexual desire and procreation. Whereas the man’s joy in his wife is an expression of the goodness of creation  that takes place before sin and death enter the story, the woman’s desire for her husband is mentioned . . . . Continue Reading »

Pontius Pilate: The Unjust Judge

As a lawyer and judge, my understanding of the Bible has naturally become colored by my experiences in, and knowledge of, the law and the legal system. Thus, in meditating on the gospel accounts of Christ’s interaction with Pontius Pilate, my focus in recent years has been on Pilate’s role as . . . . Continue Reading »

Lawless Ends

Law as a Means to an End: Threat to the Rule of Law by brian z. tamanaha cambridge university press, 268 pages, $31.99 It is a commonplace in American legal culture that law is a means to an end, that laws serve such social purposes as protecting individuals against physical harm, promoting . . . . Continue Reading »

Waco: A Massacre
and Its Aftermath

Back in the late 1920s the finger of God touched Victor Houteff, and he left the Orthodox Church of Bulgaria to join the Seventh-day Adventists. In 1929 he moved to California, where, though not approved by the main body of Seventh-day Adventism, he gained a following with his preaching. He and his . . . . Continue Reading »

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