March 2010 Archives

'I was robbed!'

Perhaps like many of you, I grew up in a white, middle-class, suburban American family. We were not really typical, but we did fit some of the mold. We attended a conservative, evangelical church, and I was shaped by that environment, as was our entire home life.

At our church, I learned "Christianity" as a set of truisms and principles to which I was expected to give mental assent. And as a result, I would, of course, live according to a certain standard of conduct: I would not drink, smoke, cuss or chew. Neither would I play cards or attend most movies. You perhaps know the routine. It was more a cultural than a spiritual thing.

The Joys of Secularism

I just listened to an interview with one Sam Harris, posted on the CNN website, about how "we" should ditch religion. Religion, he says is not a good tool for making moral decisions, and modern science works much better.

I also saw some comments on Facebook about this, about what a wonderfully clear thinker Harris is, and how more people should think like him. So I want to post some thoughts from a different perspective. Perhaps they will start a conversation.

Is it really good news?

Yesterday I attended one of the "12 Conversations in 12 Cities" leading up to the Lausanne meeting in October in Capetown, South Africa. The focus was the relationship between the church, the gospel and social justice. A panel of respected Christian thinkers and leaders interacted on some difficult questions, and it was a good and worthwhile time.

Listening, the basic question came to me: What, exactly, is the gospel? I think some of our problem is that we have failed to fully understand this term with all its implications. Some refer to a "social gospel" while others hold to a "spiritual gospel."

Lies, fears, and hope

A while back, I was reading something that gave me the idea to make a list. More precisely, four lists. I would look back at my life and think of four categories of things that have been factors in shaping my life and how I have lived it. I did that, and I want to share something of what I learned.

The first group contains regrets. That contained far too many items. It included my desires, both that many were and remain unmet, and the idea that I thought I could make things happen to satisfy these deepest longings. The result was a wreck. Also included are injuries, both those inflicted on me and those I have inflicted on others. There has been much pain, some mine and some caused by me in others, acting out of my own pain into their lives.

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  • Larry Baden said:
      Hello Johanes, I'm not certain I understand your comment, but it seem...
  • yohanes wonde said:
      hi LARRY BADEN i am fond in a big problem I belief am not in choice o...
  • Larry Baden said:
      George, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. As for your 'humor,' well......
  • Larry Baden said:
      Truth, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I especially like the last se...
  • Truth Told said:
      Looking into the account of the adulterous woman it is easy to see tha...
  • George Fowler said:
       Jesus said: “He who is without sin, cast the first stone”. A rock ca...
  • Martin Rudd said:
      Remember what our Lord and Saviour said. "Its not my will that any sho...
  • Thomas Hatfield said:
       I realize that a humain being has to make difficult decisions in ther...
  • Elder John McCall said:
      Good article and complicated subject, but knowing that he is all knowi...
  • Larry Baden said:
      Dee, Thanks for your thoughts. A couple problems as I see it: First, ...

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