Truth-like Substance (Screwtape Letters Part 2)

In the first two letters, Lewis plants in Screwtape’s correspondence some philosophy and some ecclesiology.The philosophy is about the precariousness uses of argument. Screwtape dissuades Wormwood from using reason at all to corrupt his patient. “The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle on to the Enemy’s own ground. He can argue too;” Oh yes he can. And so can his strongest saints. Witness all the times in the book of Acts, … Continue reading

The Emergent Church: Emerging from What?

(Originally printed in the Spring 2005 Issue of the MCOI Journal beginning in page 10) By Peter Simpson What should the relationship be between the church and culture? How should the constancy of the church adapt to the fluidity of culture? The church must find some way to communicate God’s message within the cultural contexts in which it finds itself. These concerns provide impetus for thought-provoking conversation in today’s church. The emergent church claims many … Continue reading

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

Answering a Critic

An individual saw last week’s blog, “Moral Fluidity” and shared it on his webpage, first by quoting snippets from our article and then by offering his commentary (we have also done a webcast on this as well): If we allow the gays to marry, next it will be polygamy and pedophilia. The article points out that now 6-7-year-olds can choose their gender, why not allow them to use their newfound gender for sex? How could … Continue reading

Moral Fluidity

We live in the challenging times of what we might call “moral fluidity.” For nearly two millennia Western culture has been guided by Judeo/Christian moral and ethical values. That doesn’t mean that no one violated them, of course. Every human being has violated them. As we pointed out last week in “The Good, Good News,” we are all moral failures – but at least everyone knew what the moral standards were! Yes, people often tried … Continue reading