You Can't Trust the Government to Solve the Poverty Problem

If you wish to get a heated discussion going among serious Christians suggest that it is our divinely given responsibility to care for the poor. Then suggest that we ought to do something, anything is better than nothing, in the name of Christ to direclty alleviate hunger and to address poverty with real Christian solutions. Few will disagree with you … Read More

Why You Can't Count on the GOP to Be Truly Family Friendly

Social conservatism, and the Republican Party, have an interesting history according to Allan Carlson, the president of the Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society in Rockford, Illinois. Writing in The Weekly Standard (March 27, 2006) Carlson notes that historically the Republican Party has favored Wall Street interests and big business, and done very little to protect the family, at … Read More

What Kind of Freedom Are We Promoting in the Middle East?

Afghanistan’s parliament demanded Wednesday that the government prevent a man, who faced the death penalty for abandoning Islam for Christianity, from being able to flee the country after his release from prison on Monday. The charges against him are simple: “apostasy from Islam.” His whereabouts are unknown but he is likely still within the country. The Italian government has granted … Read More

WWJD, Hillary Clinton and Immigration

“What Would Jesus Do” has increasingly become more than an evangelical movement, equipped with wrist bands, urging young people to exercise better ethical choices. Some conservative Republicans have previously suggested that they know Jesus would be a card-carrying Republican and thus support things like opposition to labor unions and certain liberal government programs designed to assist the poor. (I also … Read More

What is the Future of the Church in the City?

Because I have just enjoyed several wonderful days (March 19-21) with the pastors and pastoral interns of City Church San Francisco I have been thinking a great deal about the future of the church in the city. Is the only model for a growing church in North America the suburban maga-church model? I think not. City Church began ten years … Read More

How Important is Propositional Truth?

Yesterday I gave a lecture and led a discussion at a seminar that was part of Imagine, a renewal conference event at Arcade Church in Sacramento, California. My session was on the emerging generation and missional church thinking. I made reference to the notion that "propositional truth" was an unhelpful category distinction for expressing what we mean by biblical truth. … Read More

War and Peace: The Present Confusion Regarding Real Evil

I have noted, several times in my recent posts, that peace between nations and states does not come because “Christian peace activists” intervene to lead warriors, whether dictators or religious militants, to lay down their swords. I have been reflecting for the past three days on the tragic death this week of activist American Tom Fox, a Quaker. Cal Thomas … Read More

Martin Marty on the Evangelical Moment

Martin E. Marty is a mainline church historian and theological analyst who faithfully tracks major trends and ethical issues. I have interviewed Marty and spent some time with him in private conversations. I often disagree with him on a number of social and political issues but always find him an engaging and useful dialogical voice. The Martin E. Marty Center … Read More

The Seeds of Evil and Destruction

Slobodan Milosevic was found dead in his cell in the Netherlands today. I can’t say I am profoundly saddened by this news. The former president of Yugoslavia, sometimes called “the butcher of the Balkans,” was one of the most brutal killers in the 20th century. He was on international trial for genocide, facing 66 counts of crime against the people, … Read More

A Healthy & Growing Church

It is a great joy to see how congregations grow and mature in the grace of God.  I have ministered as an itinerant speaker and encourager (since 1992) in churches of all sizes, types and styles, all across North America. There are strengths and weaknesses in every type of congregation that I encounter. Some are better at one aspect of … Read More