That Was The Week That Was

‘Twas a quiet week here at the home office, primarily because I ended up writing obituaries at our department blog for two retired colleagues who died within a few days of each other: political scientist Bill Johnson and historian Kevin Cragg. I added a longer, more personal tribute to Kevin at The Anxious Bench, where … More That Was The Week That Was

That Was The Week That Was

This week I looked at the religious biography of a Minnesotan who was known for technological innovation and died on Hawaii. Not Charles Lindbergh, but Medtronic founder Earl Bakken. Elsewhere: • For Reformation Day, a Lutheran meditation on the importance of singing in church. • Two years after Rachel Held Evans died, her last book is coming … More That Was The Week That Was

“Antipathy to authoritarian forms”: An Interpretation of Pietism from Mid-1950s Bethel

One benefit of participating in the Following Jesus conversation this year is that I’ve been prompted to dig back into a variety of sources from what we’re calling “The Pietist Tradition.” One that recently arrived in my mailbox is From Head to Heart: A Compendium of the Theology of Philipp Jakob Spener. Edited by K. … More “Antipathy to authoritarian forms”: An Interpretation of Pietism from Mid-1950s Bethel

That Was The Week That Was

This week I surveyed the history of evangelical responses to capital punishment and reflected on joining historians, philosophers, and political scientists in a single department. Elsewhere: • With Independence Day approaching, Christianity Today ran several thoughtful essays suggesting how American Christians can think about this holiday, including John Wilsey reviewing a new book on patriotism and … More That Was The Week That Was

That Was The Month That Was

I’m hoping to get back to blogging regularly this week. But first, a look back at some of what I was reading and writing during my May break from Pietist Schoolman: • Over at The Anxious Bench, I wrote about COVID, abortion, “practical atheism,” and a Norwegian bishop who resisted his country’s Nazi occupiers. • While it … More That Was The Month That Was

The Conference on Faith and History Condemns the Assault on the U.S. Capitol

For about a dozen years now, I’ve been active in the Conference on Faith and History, serving on its executive board since 2016. This week that board voted not only to endorse the American Historical Association’s condemnation of the January 6th insurrection in Washington, DC, but to publish our own statement, which I’ve reprinted below. … More The Conference on Faith and History Condemns the Assault on the U.S. Capitol

The With-God Life: Faith without (Political) Works

I groaned a little when I saw James 2 show up on the daily lectionary yesterday and today. As a historian who teaches about the Reformation and a Protestant who still (mostly) celebrates its legacy, I’ve wrestled dozens of times with Martin Luther’s disdain for this “right strawy epistle,” which insists that “a person is … More The With-God Life: Faith without (Political) Works