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How to Become Yourself

During the past twenty years, I have taught courses in intellectual history via a “Great Books” program. From teaching these books, I learned a great deal. But never did I expect that I would learn a great deal about myself as an individual. But I did, and among the great literature, nowhere did I learn [ Read More ]

What Hath Christianity to Do with Politics? (Pt. 3: Lutheran, Reformed, Anabaptist, Black Church)

Out of the Catholic and Orthodox traditions emerged newly-formed streams of Christianity. Those traditions both drew upon, and reacted against, the other traditions. In this installment, we will explore briefly some of the main distinctives of these traditions as they sought to formulate the proper approach to the political sphere. We will begin with the [ Read More ]

The Gospel of the Kingdom

Joe Anderson’s and Tim Nichols’ “Proclaim” is a biblically grounded and richly provocative essay offering great insight into the task of proclamation in our secular age. Given that Westerners have learned to manage life without reference to God, and that Christianity is now often considered implausible, unimaginable, and even reprehensible, our need to understand the task [ Read More ]

What Hath Christianity To Do with Politics?: (Pt. 2: Augustine and the Roman Empire)

The early church forged its thinking about politics from Scripture and in the context of a decadent pagan Roman Empire. It grappled with how best to further the Christian mission in such a context. Should it withdraw from the political sphere, given its persecuted minority status within the empire? Conversely, should it expend the majority of [ Read More ]

What Hath Christianity To Do with Politics? (Pt:1: The Bible and Politics)

What Hath Christianity To Do with Politics?: (Pt:1: The Bible and Politics) In a nation divided socially, culturally, and politically, there is a necessity to reflect upon the proper relationship between Christianity and politics. As Richard John Neuhaus often remarked, politics is a function of culture at large, and culture is always underlain by religion [ Read More ]

Expressive Individualism: Our Twenty-First Century American Ba’al

During the middle of the twentieth century, the great German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote that the Western world was a “world come of age,” by which he did not intend a compliment; he meant that Westerners had learned to manage life without reference to God and that life without God is deeply unhealthy for individuals [ Read More ]

How the Gospel Should Shape Our Political Posture

Our nation’s political discourse has become increasingly toxic in the past two decades. Consider the uncivil and even caustic demeanor of many radio show hosts, cable TV pundits, and opinion writers. Think about the degrading and demeaning language used in the comment strings of media sites, Twitter feeds, and Facebook pages. Consider the bipartisan nature of the incivility. [ Read More ]