That Was The Week That Was

This week I considered how my writing mirrors my teaching and reflected on a year-long conversation about how Christians follow Jesus. Elsewhere:

• I’m not sure the temperature got above 80°F (27°C) when I was in Germany last month. But July has been a different story, with scorching heat waves across Europe.

Wildfires have spread in southern European regions like the Spanish province of Salamanca – European Union/Copernicus Programme

• John Hawthorne concluded his series on polarization with some potential solutions.

• One prominent conservative rethought his enthusiasm for “the postindustrial capitalism machine.”

• While another urged Democrats to address the growing “God gap” in their ranks.

• And, because everything is topsy-turvy in 2022, a progressive encouraged Democrats and independents to vote for a Republican.

• Why has one GOP president risen so much in the estimation of historians?

• Eboo Patel and Robert P. Jones explained why the phrase “Judeo-Christian,” for all its limitations, represented an earlier effort to push back against Christian nationalism.

• “Religious liberty is one of the earliest civic values associated with the United States,” noted two historians, “yet defining and defending it has proved a centurieslong process.”

• “No one would begrudge a Christian institution thanking God for its longevity and chronicling its own history,” wrote Jemar Tisby, of a book about his own seminary that ignores the Civil War and Jim Crow, “but it does not honor God to pretend as if one of the most glaring shortcomings of the institution simply does not exist.”

• While he thought that moral appeals to the past are more problematic than we tend to think, Myles Werntz emphasized that “we live morally as a Christian out of convictions which we did not originate.”

• Philip Jenkins retired his Christian Century column on global Christianity.

(Of course, you can still read Philip’s weekly posts at The Anxious Bench, which just added historian-pastor Malcolm Foley to its roster.)

• Apparently we’re doing the whole debate about David and Bathsheba again…

• Growth still happens at seminaries, even as they go through numerical decline.

• One of my favorite former seminary professors had some helpful thoughts about how Christian college faculty can weather a season of “forced innovation.”

Cross-posted at Substack.