Is Charity the Church's Job?

If you’ve ever talked to broadly conservative Christians in the US about politics, you’re likely to have heard the claim the title of this post refers to. Skeptical of government welfare programs, they often argue that charity—meeting the needs of the poor—is not the government’s job. The government has other duties, like justice and national … Continue reading "Is Charity the Church's Job?"

Unchangingly Alive

“I the Lord do not change.” So declared God in Malachi 3:6. The doctrine of immutability, that God is completely changeless, has always been a staple of Christian theology. Unfortunately, like all such staples, it has made many enemies in the last couple centuries. More than a few theologians and philosophers like to argue that … Continue reading "Unchangingly Alive"

Jacob I Loved, Esau I Hated

Not long ago, I was reading Malachi when I was struck by a verse commonly quoted in the Calvinist circle. In Malachi 1:2b-3a, God tells Israel, “I have loved Jacob, but Esau I have hated.” The Apostle Paul later cites this in Romans 9:13. Calvinists often deploy it as evidence of individual, unconditional election. It … Continue reading "Jacob I Loved, Esau I Hated"

Pleasure

I love the sensation of chocolate ice cream. Especially when it has chips and chunks and ripples. The more chocolate variety, the better. I am capable of consuming strangely large bowls of this delightful dessert. And the word for the experience: pleasure. A lot of Christians generally have an awkward relationship with pleasure. We spend … Continue reading "Pleasure"

Other Nifty Blogs

In doing some minor site updates the other day, I noticed that my “Other Nifty Blogs” menu (currently located in a sidebar) was a bit out of date. Obviously, I had to immediately fix it. So now I have a more current blog list that better reflects what I read these days. But today I … Continue reading "Other Nifty Blogs"