What It Means to Educate “For God’s Glory and Neighbors’ Good”

Today is the first day of fall classes at Bethel University. So before I get too caught up in the details of particular courses, I want to take some time this week to step back and reflect on our larger mission and identity. Let’s start with the tag line that now shows up on Bethel … More What It Means to Educate “For God’s Glory and Neighbors’ Good”

How Christian Scholars Seek Truth in a “Post-Truth” World

Fake news. Alternative facts. Post-truth. When those are the catch phrases of the moment, this portion of my employer’s statement of core values can seem both quaint and urgently needed: As learners, we are critical thinkers and problem-solvers committed to academic excellence and intellectual rigor. At the same time, we are truth-seekers, recognizing that all truth-scientific, artistic, philosophical, … More How Christian Scholars Seek Truth in a “Post-Truth” World

Best of The Pietist Schoolman: Birmingham Revolution

For Martin Luther King, Jr. Day… Here’s a series of three posts I wrote in the summer of 2014, inspired by Ed Gilbreath’s Birmingham Revolution, on King’s famous letter from a jail in that Alabama city. Gilbreath (author of Reconciliation Blues and executive director of communications for my denomination) provides enough biographical and historical context that I began to realize just how little … More Best of The Pietist Schoolman: Birmingham Revolution

Can Culture Call Christians Back to Christ?

Consider these quotations, coming from two Baptist preachers speaking at either end of the 1960s: 1. …although communism can never be accepted by a Christian, it emphasizes many essential truths that must forever challenge us as Christians. Indeed, it may be that communism is a necessary corrective for a Christianity that has been all too passive and … More Can Culture Call Christians Back to Christ?

A Pietist Vision for a Christian University

If you have any interest in the future of Christian higher education — and especially if you’re an employee, alumnus, student, or friend of Bethel University — let me point you to my article in the Summer 2015 issue of Bethel Magazine. (You can click here, or turn to p. 24 in the embed below.) Entitled “Faith-Filled Tradition, … More A Pietist Vision for a Christian University

Christianity and Western Civ

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of taking five Bethel University students to Mankato, Minnesota, where Bethany Lutheran College hosted the second annual Minnesota Undergraduate History Symposium. (#1 was at the University of Northwestern – St. Paul; #3 will be at Bethel next spring.) Thanks to @RyanCMacPherson and @BethanyLutheran for hosting a great #muhs2015! pic.twitter.com/PWQfixivkp … More Christianity and Western Civ