Written by Stephen Taylor Monday, 17 November 2014 00:00

Israel Palestine

Events in Israel-Palestine have recently been overshadowed by the horrors in Syria and Iraq, but the tragedy of the Holy Land continues unabated. Even today (at the writing, Oct. 28, 2014) The Philadelphia Inquirer ran a brief article on the pledge of Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, to continue building in East Jerusalem (p. A5). “[T]hese places will stay in Israeli sovereignty under any agreement,” he is quoted as saying.

Sadly, a majority of American evangelicals continues to regard Netanyahu’s stance as fully justified. With some notable exceptions, evangelical leaders and pundits are reluctant to focus on the suffering of Palestinian Arabs, many of them Christians, in this long ordeal. For some this reluctance is based on a complex set of considerations, but for nearly all – including the minority just mentioned – the prophetic promises to Israel enumerated in the Old Testament play a major role.

The question is: are Bible-believing evangelicals reading their Bibles as Christians should? I don’t think so. And in this and a subsequent post, I will try to explain why.


Written by Charles Zimmerman Friday, 14 November 2014 17:43

The Christian Story

Christianity and the Bible are inseparable! Christianity is centered in the good news of Jesus Christ and the Bible is God’s revelation of the good news of Jesus Christ.

Therefore, it is essential that we read the Bible and read it correctly. If I were God – and that is a dangerous way to start a sentence – but if I were God I would write the Bible differently than God had it written. I would write it like this:

  • Chapter 1 – all about God – character & attributes
  • Chapter 2 – all about people – assets & liabilities
  • Chapter 3 – all about relationships – finding a great spouse & raising great kids
  • Chapter 4 – all about work – making money & finding meaning
  • Chapter 5 – all about spiritual growth – prayer & other spiritual disciplines
  • Chapter 6 – how to get to heaven and have fun along the way
  • Chapter 7 – all you ever wanted to know about the end times

Lots of people wish the Bible was written that way – lists of stuff to know and rules to practice. Well God didn’t write the Bible that way. The Bible is not a list of correct beliefs and tips for living.


Written by Susan Disston and Jennifer Zuck Friday, 07 November 2014 16:39

The Well

In October Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai were jointly awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize “for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education." For two decades in India, Mr. Satyarthi’s several organizations have sought to free children from exploitation and advocate for their rights. Since 2012 in Pakistan, Ms. Yousafzai has personally advocated for educational opportunities for girls and women after suffering an assassination attempt to silence her voice. Both individuals have demonstrated that a critical aspect of their work is calling society to provide for the successful re-integration, rehabilitation and education of those who are rescued from exploitation. Mr. Satyarthi’s and Ms. Yousafzai’s efforts are global.


Written by Drew Hart Monday, 03 November 2014 17:57


or Tuning Out the Oppressed Christian’s Voice and Experience within Christendom

“for, between the Christianity of this land, and the Christianity of Christ, I recognize the widest, possible difference—so wide that to receive the one as good, pure, and holy, is of necessity to reject the other as bad, corrupt, and wicked.” (Frederick Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass)

It seems like everywhere you go Christians in one way or another are talking about Christendom. Actually, the word being used most is post-Christendom. At the turn of the 21st century we are still in the cloudy shadows of a post-everything society. Postcolonial. Postmodern. Post-Christendom. In most cases, there is no agreement about what exactly is to come.


Written by Dr. Dave Dunbar Wednesday, 22 October 2014 00:00

Christian Meditation

The Bible advocates meditation as one of the primary ways that we can appropriate God’s Word in our lives. Joshua is exhorted to “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night.” (Joshua 1:8) Even the Psalter begins with a description of the blessedness of the person:

“. . . whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water . . .
whatever they do prospers.” (Ps. 1: 2-3, NIV)

Yet many Christians are suspicious about meditation. I think there are two primary reasons for this. The first is that some associate meditation with non-Christian religions like Hinduism or Buddhism or western New Age philosophies. But if meditation is commended in the Bible, the question is not whether we should practice it, but how—what is distinctive about the Christian practice of meditation?


Written by Philip Monroe Monday, 20 October 2014 00:00

Christian Counseling

What makes Christian Counseling Christian?

Is it the content of the conversations (e.g., the number of times the Bible or Jesus are mentioned)? Is it the character of the person providing the counsel? Is the goal of counseling something that makes counseling Christian?

For those interested in studying Christian theories, you might start with the Psychology & Christianity: Five Views (InterVarsity Press, 2010) and observe five different Christian thinkers interact with psychology and four other thinkers. For the sake of this post, consider this illustration of the five key models.


Written by Bryan Maier Friday, 17 October 2014 14:14


The other day, I overheard my son and his friend teasing each other with this phrase. When I asked them what it meant, they said it was a sarcastic reference to the party line they hear in school that if you disagree with anyone, especially with regard to your religious or political views, you are automatically charged with hating them.

Now, no one wants to be hated (or be accused of being a hater). And so, to avoid this charge, it is tempting to just accept whatever prevailing party line holds sway at the time. But I cannot help but wonder that if disagreeing with someone automatically means that I hate them, the word “hate” sure has been trivialized. I wonder if defining the word “hate” so glibly risks trivializing real hatred.


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