Dark Reason

Every now and then a news article comes along that scares me a little. The Washington Post reported on a social science study to test how politicians respond to evidence that contradicts their ideological positions. I bet you can guess how this went. Our research involved a number of “survey experiments” in which we varied the questions that we asked politicians. In our first test, we asked the politicians to evaluate parents’ satisfaction ratings for … Continue reading

The Worst Sermon

Needless to say, I was away from home on a Sunday. We decided to go to a friend’s church we had attended before. I won’t name the church and details have been altered to stave off embarrassment. But I bet you can guess the denomination. The first thing I noticed how the congregation had dwindled. Where once there were a hundred seats, now the chairs had disappeared from the back. I walked across a sea … Continue reading

Falling From Grace

The internet and “Christian TV” today have become a great marketplace of religious ideas of all stripes, and people often do not know exactly who to trust. Just about every denomination and sect of Christendom is represented, plus, of course, every type of cult and false teacher. Unfortunately, cults and aberrant teachers do not generally identify themselves as such in their YouTube descriptions. You actually have to view the material offered before making this determination … Continue reading

The Challenge of Communication: Defining Terms

I often have to think about the challenge of communication, not only in our articles or public teaching but also in my day-to-day interaction with others. Sometimes when talking with someone, I get the distinct feeling that, although we may be using the same language, we somehow are not tracking together. Later, I may realize that the communication was not clear because we had different definitions, which had been assumed and not clarified. For example, … Continue reading

Spiritual Disciplines and the Appearance of Wisdom

Writing to the Colossians in the First Century, the Apostle Paul warned about certain spiritual disciplines that had “the appearance of wisdom” (Colossians. 2:23) but, in fact, conflicted with sound biblical teaching and were very harmful to the Christian life. False teachers were in this case Gnostics, who crept into the church and claimed special “spiritual knowledge.” They gained influence in the church because what they were teaching felt “right” and “good” and oh so … Continue reading

A History of Sinners

Lately, barely a day goes by that doesn’t have a news story about the removal or destruction of a Civil War historical monument or the unearthing of the graves of Confederate soldiers. The destruction extends to historical figures such as Christopher Columbus as well. Who knows what historical monuments will be the next to fall into disfavor? There seems to be a feeling among those so engaged that the monuments themselves have the power to … Continue reading