5 Great Quotes: MLK Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968) was a pastor, scholar, and pioneering activist. His life was given to the work of American Civil Rights and racial reconciliation in the American church. He was dedicated to the way of nonviolent agitation as a means to bring about justice & change. (On MLK Jr. Day, so many quotesContinue reading “5 Great Quotes: MLK Jr.”

This Is America

Everyone has already made up their mind. Not about what happened in DC. But about what we want to believe happened in DC. That matters. Profoundly. The reality we live by and live in, our worldview, will—without much effort from us—interpret and assign meaning & value to much of yesterday’s events. Even filling in theContinue reading “This Is America”

5 Great Quotes: George MacLeod

George MacLeod (1895-1991) was a 20th century Scottish pastor, and restorer/founder of the Iona Community in Scotland. He fought in World War I, and was converted to Christ after the War. MacLeod is best known for his radical ministry to the working poor as a leader in the Church of Scotland. “The cross must beContinue reading “5 Great Quotes: George MacLeod”

Bonhoeffer’s Frontline Christmas

I’ve been reading Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Letters And Papers From Prison. He was a German pastor & member of the German Resistance against the Nazi Party during World War II. Bonhoeffer was arrested and eventually martyred just before the end of the war. What strikes me is the humanity of his letters. They give depth thatContinue reading “Bonhoeffer’s Frontline Christmas”

Why We Need The Bells on Christmas Day

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow sat at his desk, alone. The year was 1863. Christmas Day. The American Civil War raging. In the last few years, he was twice a widower. His oldest son joined the Union cause, only to be wounded and nearly paralyzed. Longfellow, like us, wrestled that Christmas Day over choosing optimism or pessimismContinue reading “Why We Need The Bells on Christmas Day”

Jesus, Marx, and Systemic Sin

Can sin be systemic? The Christian Scriptures teach that sin is both a human condition & concrete action. Sin as a condition refers to the posture of the human spirit in relation to God, namely one of antagonism and total rejection of his rule. Sin as concrete action (also “sins”) are specific manifestations of sin,Continue reading “Jesus, Marx, and Systemic Sin”

Against Christian Nationalism

Christian Nationalism is a form of theological syncretism, a blending of religion & politics. It hijacks Christian Scripture, symbolism, and imagery to promote American glory & good as ultimate. In contrast, the Christian gospel of Jesus’ kingdom announces grace for all mankind. In Christian nationalism, the nation of America becomes essential to God’s plan toContinue reading “Against Christian Nationalism”

5 Great Quotes: W.E.B. Du Bois

W.E.B. Du Bois (1868-1963) was an American civil rights leader, writer, scholar, activist and historian. Du Bois in his writings described what he called the “veil” in the African American experience, a sense of two identities at odds in American culture. It was Du Bois’ writing around the turn of the century that impacted aContinue reading “5 Great Quotes: W.E.B. Du Bois”

When You Wish Upon A Future

Walt Disney shaped the American Church because he shaped American culture. His vision of American progress in the 1960’s promised that technology would bring about the good life, less work and more leisure. The American church under the influence of this vision tends to choose the optics of progress: new facilities, new political voices, newContinue reading “When You Wish Upon A Future”