Thaddeus Williams

Idolatry Breaks Hearts: Exodus 20:3 and the Secret to Relational Sanity

By Thaddeus Williams Mar. 12, 2015 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Marriage and Family, Theology

I used to think that worship songs where you could swap out all the God references, with “baby” were evidence that God had been trivialized by a sappy, spiritualized romanticism in the church. There may be truth to that. But perhaps the interchangeability of “God” and “baby” in worship songs says less about worship songs and more about love songs, less about how the church man-sizes God (which does happen) and more about a much broader tendency in the church and culture-at-large to God-size our romantic partners ...

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Jarheads for Jesus?: 10 Reasons ‘Culture War’ is a Really Bad Metaphor (Part One)

By Thaddeus Williams Dec. 29, 2014 9:00 a.m. Apologetics, Church Life, Culture, Evangelism, Theology

I was raised in a church world in which “culture war” was a favorite metaphor of how the church relates to the nonchurch. We were God’s courageous moral infantry doing battle against those cunning cultists, those hateful homosexuals, those lying liberals, and those devilish Darwinists. If we listen with tuned ears to Christian radio, Christian literature, Christian blogs, and Christian conversations, it becomes clear: We Christians love the language of war. Over the last 30 years it has become our dominant metaphor for relating to culture; it saturates our vocabulary, shapes our politics, and soaks our worldview. But is culture war helpful? Is it biblical? Should we be jarheads for Jesus?

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The Secret to C.S. Lewis' Success

By Thaddeus Williams Oct. 23, 2013 4:48 p.m. Apologetics, Ministry and Leadership, Spiritual Formation, Theology

I recently watched a disturbing video. A camera caught the head of a certain political organization; we’ll call him Lucius, attempting to convince a packed auditorium about the reality of moral law. Specifically, Lucius appealed to a real moral law above and beyond culture to argue against a right to homosexual marriage. What struck me most was less of what he said and more how he said it. Lucius taunted the crowd relentlessly, hurling insults like hand grenades. People often argue against moral reality by appealing to moral reality (e.g., there can’t be absolutes because look at out how absolutely wrong the crusades and inquisitions were!). But there is an equal and opposite inconsistency, namely, arguing for moral reality while breaking the very morality we are defending (e.g., real morals like ‘love your neighbor’ exist, you ignoramus!). In other words, Lucius’ problem was that he did not argue his worldview as if his worldview were actually true. No matter what he said, the way in which he said it made it seem like morals like love and respect were not to be taken seriously after all. The medium refuted the message.

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The Logic of the Logos: Mirroring the Mind of Christ Together This Semester

By Thaddeus Williams Aug. 23, 2013 12:54 p.m. Apologetics, Christian Education, Spiritual Formation, Theology

“A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” This slogan, first broadcast by the United Negro College Fund in 1972, has become something of a John 3:16 for educators seeking to evangelistically rouse students out of intellectual slumber. If I could tailor this slogan for our Biola community as we embark on a new semester, it would become: “The mind of Christ is far too precious to not cultivate.” While lacking the elegant phrasing and bumper sticker quote-ability of the original, it does express something I hope we can pause to ponder as we enter our classrooms. 

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The Secret to Becoming Irrelevant: Spend All Your Time Trying to Be Relevant

By Thaddeus Williams Apr. 4, 2013 5:06 p.m. Church Life, Culture, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership, Theology

Often times it seems that harder the church tries to be relevant, the more irrelevant we become. The Bible is full of this kind of upside down logic. The self-clingers lose themselves, the prideful end up humbled, those jostling to be first end last, and, now it seems, those trying the hardest to be relevant end up most irrelevant. Thaddeus Williams explores what happens when the church puts relevance to culture ahead of reverence to Christ. 

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The anti-Trinity

By Thaddeus Williams Feb. 1, 2013 12:49 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Church Life, Ethics, Evangelism, Spiritual Formation, Theology

Jesus prayed for His church to form a kind of angled mirror, bonded together with the kind of love that directs the world’s gaze upward to behold the Triune God of love (Jn. 17:11-24). Are we reflecting the Triune God clearly, or do our churches often form more of a cracked mirror, fragmented shards with animosities and apathies caked like mud, refracting little light from above? Dr. Williams explores one reason we may often fail to reflect the Trinity, namely, the lack of a robust doctrine of "the anti-Trinity."

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Open What God WRAPS: Post-Christmas Reflections on Enjoying Your Best Gifts

By Thaddeus Williams Jan. 13, 2013 8:49 p.m. New Testament, Spiritual Formation, Theology

What gifts does God give us in the person and work of Christ? How can we unwrap and enjoy them every day with the wide-eyed wonder of a kid on Christmas morning? Dr. Williams offers some post-Christmas reflections.

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