Wild in the Streets

In 1968, the film Wild in the Streets  was released.  The premise was a simple and a somewhat satirical jab at the burgeoning “anti-establishment,” counter-cultural revolution that was rampant at the time.  A senator, played by Hal Holbrook, and Max Frost, a 22 year old rock star played by Christopher Jones, make common cause with a view to securing the youth vote.  Max, already a budding revolutionary, points out that 52% of the US population … 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

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

A New Hymn for Progressive Churches

It’s never too late to add a new hymn to our hymnals. And what better way to do it by updating an old melody with lyrics suited to the present socio-political realities that each of us face each and every day? With that in mind, we’ve taken a classic tune that just about everybody knows and reinterpreted it for a generation that has little use for such concepts as sin, grace, and redemption. So, in … 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