Last week I celebrated my birthday. This was a BIG one… the big 6-0. Seems huge. I have told several people—60 just seems old. When you are in your 50’s you can convince yourself that you are still at the upper reaches of middle age. But 60? That’s old. Bordering on elderly. Within sight of ancient. (One friend reminded me that biblically I only have 10 more years left to live, cf. Psalm 90:10.)
But, it is not the demise of my fading youth that is on my mind this morning. Actually, what I am thinking of is the difference between everyday life in the 21st century and what life was like when I was growing up. My, what differences there are! Continue reading →
Recently I have been doing research on the Emergent Church. Just in case you are not familiar with this movement, let me give you a little background. The Emergent Church movement originated in conversations between various pastors, youth pastors and church leaders back in the 1990’s. They were concerned about certain trends and practices they saw in the church. They were especially concerned about how relevant and effective the church was in reaching a postmodern culture. Out of their conversations arose an entire movement which has swept through America, Britain, Australia and other parts of the world.
The original ambitions of those involved in these conversations were noble and good. However, in their efforts to address the concerns of a postmodern society, they ended up becoming a postmodern movement. It seems, at least in their thinking, that to be relevant you must accommodate yourself to the culture—even if this accommodation involves sacrificing some of the foundational truths of the Christian faith. Continue reading →
We live in a day when everything is relative. According to the popular mythology, nothing is absolute. (How popular mythologists get by with this absolute I will never understand.) Truth and morality are situational, personal, relational and relative. The all-too common thinking runs something like this: “If I think it is okay, then it is okay. If I perceive it as moral and good, then it must be moral and good.” Usually what such thinkers actually mean is “if what I am doing is something I want to do—that makes me happy—then it must be good.” Continue reading →
I am thinking this afternoon about the nature of evil. Possibly a rather strange subject to be contemplating on a Friday afternoon. Maybe it’s all the bizarre crimes that we hear about these days. Or maybe it’s the violence raging its way through the Middle East right now. Or perhaps it’s simply the clouds and gloom that I see outside my office window. Whatever the reason, the matter of evil keeps coming to mind. Continue reading →