• “The essential thing ‘in heaven and on earth’ is that there should be a long obedience in the same direction; there thereby results, and has always resulted in the long run, something which has made life worth […]

  • The indelible nature of Nelson Mandela is that his life compels us to ask pointed questions of our own, questions about our practice of forgiveness, our resolve to persevere, our willingness to sacrifice for […]

  • This question notices what Arlie Hochschild in her book, The Outsourced Self: Intimate Life in Market Times, says is “the great unnoticed trend of our time,” which is the pervasive commodification of daily life. […]

  • Let’s invent a place. Call it Flowertopia, a free society. Most of the citizens there keep bees. In fact, beekeeping is enshrined as a sacred right of Flowertopia, important to its sense of itself. But over time many of Flowertopia’s citizens develop severe allergies to bee stings, some fatal. And yet everyone knows no one [...]

  • The gift of fathers being dads. More men in our city and its suburbs need not only to take responsibility for their children but patiently and decisively teach their children to take responsibility for themselves. It’s not a panacea for everything broken in our city and world, but many of our social ills would be [...]

  • If you were addressing the nation on Wednesday, Nov. 7, the DAY AFTER the election, what would you say? What advice would you offer to your fellow Americans about the next four years? Since I speak to evangelical Christians mostly, the first thing that comes to mind is what the late James Montgomery Boice (Tenth Presbyterian [...]

  • What are your views on the fact that Protestants are no longer the majority religion in the U.S.? This is no October surprise. I’ll give a thought or two on the “Nones,” as they’re being called. Watching the Pew numbers the last few years feels like an exercise in pendulum swinging. We usually don’t know anything [...]

  • What is your favorite verse of holy scripture and why? To pick just one verse from the Bible is perhaps a little like a Louvre curator picking one piece of art in his or her collection to display. But I’ll choose Psalm 119:32. It contains an aphorism in its second line that the NIV rightly renders [...]

  • Memphis is the second most generous city in the country, according to a new survey by The Chronicle of Philanthropy. According to the publication: “Religion plays a major role in how much money Americans give to charity. The parts of the country that tend to be more religious are also more generous.” Why is this true? [...]

  • What should Memphis City Council do? Are sexual orientation and gender identity an employment issue, a civil rights issue or a faith issue? It’s a cultural issue. The interested reader will find at this link a diverse scholarly discussion of sex, gender, and marriage in reaction to thirteen propositions by Douglas Farrow, professor of Christian…[Read more]

  • What is your reaction to the Freedom from Religion Foundation suing the Memphis City Council? Dan Barker used to be a pastor. He converted to atheism and is quite the passionate evangelist for it, lawsuits being one way he proselytizes for his faith. The following link [Read more]

  • The tragic mass shooting at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin, coming just a few days after the tragic mass shooting at the theater in Colorado, continues a deeply disturbing American trend. Since 1976, the U.S. has averaged 20 mass shootings a year – including 30 in 2003. Why is America such a violent place? Why are [...]

  • The Episcopal Church will now allow priests to conduct services blessing same-sex relationships. The denomination’s House of Bishops approved the policy Monday, and delegates to the national convention approved the measure on Tuesday becoming the largest U.S. religious denomination to approve such a ritual. What’s your response? Is this an…[Read more]

  • According to the 2010 Census, of the 168,000 children living in Memphis, nearly 67,000 — about 4 in 10 — are living in a family with a female householder and NO FATHER PRESENT. Later this month, Memphis Mayor A C Wharton will host the Second Annual Memphis Training Camp for Dads. (Wharton is writing a [...]

  • Memphis City Council member Shea Flinn wants the the city to study the idea of creating an ‘adult entertainment district’ for strip clubs and other sex-oriented businesses. He wants a committee to look into a possible location as well as answer the question whether “this is the right thing to do.” Is it the right thing [...]

  • The Holy Grail of gay activism in America is cultural acceptance of homosexuality. No one stigmatizes what everyone accepts as normal. We evangelicals are one of the last lines of resistance to the normalization of homosexuality. Because of our resistance, many gay people believe evangelicals hate them. To me as an evangelical leader, this is [...]

  • Why do we pray in public? When and where is public prayer inappropriate? Are there too many restrictions on public prayer? Too few? By “prayer” one should mean an open and ongoing conversation with God. The conversation involves formal veneration of and supplication to God, but in Paul’s words prayer is “without ceasing” ( 1 Thess. 5:17 ) [...]

  • Tell us about The Teacher Who Changed My Life – and why. A favorite teacher who impacted me greatly was Dr. John D. Hannah, Professor of Historical Theology at Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS). Hannah’s class notes were already written out in bulk, so the notes I took were of his insightful and colorful asides, axioms, principles, [...]

  • Is imposition of the death penalty a political/partisan matter or a religious/moral matter? Why is the death penalty largely being carried out in the South? Should Tennessee abolish the death penalty? Richard Weaver opens his book Ideas Have Consequences memorably: “Every man participating in a culture has three levels of conscious reflection:…[Read more]

  • It is often said that you “can’t legislate morality.” Are saggy pants a morality issue or something else? Most laws are legislated morality. Morality constitutes standards of approvable conduct, and some of these standards are codified into law. In the case of sagging it would be better left to the school districts to assess and enforce [...]

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