• Christianity,  News

    A Meditation on the 20th Anniversary of 9/11

    I’ll never forget where I was on September 11, 2001. My wife and I were in our second year of marriage, and we were living in Louisville, Kentucky while I was working on my Ph.D. On the morning of the attacks, I had a seminar later that day, and I was in our apartment when she called me from her work to tell me to turn the television on. I think both buildings had already been struck by the time I tuned in, but I was watching live television as the towers eventually crumbled to the ground. Americans were horrified by what we saw that day. As the flames engulfed…

  • Theology/Bible

    Martyn Lloyd-Jones on “Preaching Other People’s Sermons”

    Martyn Lloyd-Jones: “I hesitated about making any reference at all to the next point–preaching other people’s sermons. I feel that I must mention it because I am assured that it is a not uncommon practice. I have but one comment to make about this–it is utterly dishonest unless you acknowledge what you are doing. I never have understood how a man can live with himself, who preaches other men’s sermons without acknowledgment. He receives the praise and the thanks of people, and yet knows that it is not due to him. He is a thief and a robber; he is a great sinner. But, as I say, the amazing thing…

  • News

    9/11: One Day in America

    Earlier this week I finished watching the new National Geographic documentary titled “9/11: One Day in America.” I cannot recommend this program highly enough. The documentary does not focus on pundits or politicians and what they did that day. Rather, it focuses on the lives and stories of the people at ground zero in Manhattan. We became familiar with many of these faces 20 years ago in the immediate aftermath. It is good to see so many of them again telling their stories in long form. I know that there are many retrospectives that have been produced in the lead-up to the 20th anniversary. But this one really is the…

  • Christianity,  Social Justice

    Louisville Mayor Endorses CRT in Public Schools

    Yesterday, I read the news that the mayor of Louisville, Greg Fischer, has sponsored a resolution encouraging public school to teach Critical Race Theory (CRT). Mayor Fischer endorsed the measure at the 89th annual meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors. Mayor Fischer’s resolution is deeply problematic and encourages school systems to adopt one of the most destructive and divisive ideologies of our time. The resolution treats any racially disparate outcome as racism itself. It claims that racism is a “normal feature of society” and thus is virtually omnipresent in American life. It rejects meritocracy and colorblind notions of justice. It calls for a new epistemology, one that gives…

  • Abortion,  Christianity

    Abolitionism vs. Incrementalism: Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?

    Doug Wilson has posted an interesting article today about the abolitionist and incrementalist approaches to opposing abortion. If you are unfamiliar with this debate, then I direct you to a piece I wrote about it last summer (here). Wilson and I both hold to incrementalism—that is, while we both want to see the abolition of legal abortion, we support policies that would reduce abortion along the way to that ultimate goal (like the new “heartbeat” law in Texas). Incrementalism is the mainstream pro-life position. Incrementalism does not entail an endorsement of every incrementalist measure. Indeed, some such measures could be ill-conceived and imprudent or perhaps surrendering too much on principle.…

  • Christianity,  Theology/Bible

    Can Calvinists Sing “Softly and Tenderly, Jesus Is Calling”?

    John Piper’s message at T4G 2014 was one of the most memorable sermons I have ever heard. His assignment was to preach Romans 9, to explain the doctrine of election, and to show how that doctrine is NOT at odds with the free offer of the gospel to all sinners. At the end of the message, he tells a story about his father, who was a Southern Baptist evangelist. Many “cage-stage” Calvinists would not put Romans 9 together with an old school tent revival, but Piper does. And it’s beautiful. Here’s the description of the message from the T4G website: Why is Romans 9 in the Bible? More specifically, why…

  • Culture,  Politics

    Buckle-up Pro-lifers. They will say anything to silence us.

    The left is apoplectic about the shutdown of death-dealing abortion mills in Texas. Nothing is more catastrophic to them than that babies would no longer be subject to legal execution. And there is hardly anything they won’t say or do to get the abortionists back to the important business of killing the unborn. For that reason, you can expect to hear some crazy, wild claims in days ahead. You are going to hear downright asinine allegations about pro-lifers and their “sinister” motivations. Here is a case in point. Jeff Greenfield claims in Politico that evangelical opposition to abortion was merely a pretext for racial discrimination: It turns out that abortion…

  • Christianity,  Social Justice

    Is Debating CRT a Distraction from Racial Justice?

    Jake Meador recently declared that racial reconciliation within Reformed Evangelicalism is effectively dead: “So far as I can tell, that conversation, which once showed such promise, is over.” You don’t have to agree with his explanation for why this is the case to see that he has a point. Things were already tense before the pandemic, but from the murder of George Floyd until now, we seem to have gotten ourselves into a tailspin. What happened? Evangelicals have differences over why things are the way they are right now. One side thinks the other is in the throes of Marxist identity politics. Another side thinks the other is marinating in…

  • Christianity,  Theology/Bible

    Should Christians Cuss?

    For some time now, I have had a growing pastoral concern about Christians using foul language. This concern has been driven in no small part by well-known pastors who commend the use of foul language and who do so based on foul language that they perceive to be in scripture. They acknowledge that the Bible says that we should not be using certain kinds of language: “Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving” (Eph. 5:4). But they also allege that the Bible itself elsewhere uses the very language that it prohibits in Ephesians 5:4. While…

  • Christianity,  Culture

    How a Christian Patriot Might Love His Wayward Country

    I love G. K. Chesterton’s reflections on what it means to be a Christian patriot. If you have never read it, I encourage you to read “The Flag of the World” in his classic work Orthodoxy. Chesterton contends that love of one’s homeland is not like house-hunting—an experience in which you weigh the pros and cons of a place and choose accordingly. He writes: A man belongs to this world before he begins to ask if it is nice to belong to it. He has fought for the flag, and often won heroic victories for the flag long before he has ever enlisted. To put shortly what seems the essential…