Posts in Culture

Underutilized Resources

By Dave Keehn Jun. 20, 2016 9:00 a.m. Christian Education, Church Life, Culture, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership, Missions, Theology

Images of extreme poverty motivate those with financial resources to donate their money to help alleviate poverty; or that is what the producers of the images hope occurs. However, reducing the terrible and often deadly ramifications of poverty is not as simple as signing the ONE petition or buying RED products (both of which I have done). The problem is also not as straightforward as the global 1% of wealth (the “haves”) giving of their means as handouts to the “have-nots.” The position of wealth in the Global West often leads to a mentality that says we know what is best for the Global Rest – we assume that if they just do what we did then they will get the same results. However, this classification of foreign aid ignores the resources of the Global Poor and their local churches, and instead creates an unhealthy dependency on handouts undermining the dignity of the materially poor, while “their poverty is actually deepened by the very churches and organizations that are trying to help them” (Fikkert & Mask, From Dependence to Dignity, 2015, p. 20) ...

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Morbid Curiosity

By Kenneth Berding Jun. 7, 2016 9:00 a.m. Apologetics, Church Life, Culture, Ethics, Spiritual Formation

I’ll bet you’re curious to know what this post is about! Actually, I love curious people, and find those who lack curiosity to be a bit boring. Still, there are some things that are good to be curious about, and others that vie for our attention that are not edifying. Here are two things worthy of your curiosity, and three that are not ...

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Life Speed

By Mick Boersma May. 25, 2016 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Culture, Marriage and Family, Ministry and Leadership

... I’ve also concluded that, metaphorically speaking, 40 miles per hour is my best speed for living life. Of course, there are those times when I have to go fast to finish a project or keep up with a host of activities particular to a certain time of year (like the little league/soccer schedules of my grand children). We all have fast times, for sure.

But the life speed that will enable me to go the long haul, continue to be effective, enjoyable to live with, and strong enough to handle the load, is a cruising speed of 40. Perhaps I first started becoming comfortable with this pace as a boy on our family farm. Life came and went in seasons. Spring and Summer were frenetic at times, but Fall and Winter balanced everything out as the ice and snow forced me to slow down, look both ways, and proceed with caution ...

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Should Experience Trump Scripture?

By Sean McDowell May. 23, 2016 9:00 a.m. Apologetics, Church Life, Culture, Marriage and Family, New Testament, Spiritual Formation, Theology

In my recent book The Beauty of Intolerance, my father and I discuss how a new view of tolerance has crept its way into the church. One powerful way this is seen is how an increasing number of Christians approach Scripture.

For instance, in his book God and the Gay Christian, Matthew Vines begins by affirming the final authority of scripture on questions of morality and doctrine.[1] And yet when Vines discovered his own same-sex attraction, his perspective began to change based on his personal experience. Now he has become an outspoken advocate for LGBT rights within the church, and his goal is to lead a movement to convince Christians that they can affirm the full authority of scripture and also affirm committed, monogamous same-sex relationships ...

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Counter-Cultural Research

By Tom Finley May. 10, 2016 9:00 a.m. Biblical Exposition, Christian Education, Church Life, Culture, Ministry and Leadership, New Testament, Old Testament

At a recent luncheon, the Talbot faculty were reminded about the culture of academia, a culture that permeates Christian universities as well. The typical academic conducts research by herself or himself alone. Any paper or book that results may be reviewed by colleagues, but still the research is the product of one mind alone. Sometimes there are books that contain contributions by various researchers, but each article typically has also a single author. There are exceptions to the rule—books or articles that are co-authored. They are still exceptions, though, and not the rule ...

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¬°Gracias Mam√°!

By Octavio Esqueda May. 7, 2016 9:00 a.m. Culture, Marriage and Family

Ser mamá es uno de los más grandes privilegios, honores y responsabilidades en esta vida. El amor de una madre por sus hijos trasciende el entendimiento y supera cualquier otra expresión de cariño. Por todos es conocida la figura de una “madre abnegada” que da todo por sus hijos sin esperar nada a cambio. A pesar de su amor desinteresado es triste que como hijos y como sociedad en general tomemos este amor por sentado y no lo apreciemos como deberíamos. Qué bueno que podemos celebrar el día de las madres para honrar su servicio y legado en nuestras vidas. Lo malo es que no tengamos la tendencia a reconocer su esfuerzo durante todo el año y celebremos también sus vidas como mujeres que tienen sueños y dones más allá de su labor como madres ...

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What Does a Swastika Mean to Me?

By Rick Langer May. 5, 2016 5:00 p.m. Christian Education, Culture

In light of Holocaust Remembrance Week and Holocaust Remembrance Day on May 5, professor Rick Langer shares what a swastika means to him.

... Likewise, the swastika, the twisted cross, is a distillation of all of Nazism. It proclaims “racial purity” and narratives of “supermen” and “lives unworthy of living.” Its jagged arms encompass a thousand crimes both large and small, and circumscribe many million corpses, named and unnamed, which lie in graves across the continent of Europe.

But the swastika has also etched a personal meaning into countless souls. Some of these souls whisper stories from their graves, but others still walk among us. And for some, myself included, the stories of our fathers and mothers have been etched into our souls as well ...

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