Abolition as Grace

You and I believe that slavery is wrong, but neither of us came to this conclusion on our own. So starts perhaps my favorite blog post of the year, published last weekend by historian Jay Case (professor at Malone University; author of An Unpredictable Gospel) and entitled, “An Ethical Conviction That You Hold, For Which … More Abolition as Grace

Grateful to Vote

I just cast my ballot, but I’ve got to admit: I’ve rarely been so unenthusiastic going into the booth. I’m normally the kind of citizen who is giddy on Election Day — shucks, I even show up for primary elections when all that’s at stake is a city council seat — but this year I … More Grateful to Vote

Women, Virtue, and Politics: From 1793 to Today

On October 30, 1793, the French National Convention — having repeatedly declined to recognize women’s right to vote — abolished women’s debating clubs and other political societies. It may be tempting to dismiss this as a little-remembered moment of misogyny by revolutionaries five weeks into their Reign of Terror. Except that the Jacobins and other … More Women, Virtue, and Politics: From 1793 to Today

Praying with the International Religious Freedom Report

Today’s report of nineteen more Christians being killed in Nigeria hastened along a post I’ve been meaning to write for a week or so: in which I tweak some advice that Karl Barth may or may not have given and encourage readers to join me in spending some time praying with the Bible in one … More Praying with the International Religious Freedom Report

David Brooks, Erasmus, and Luther Walk into a Bar…

On Monday one of my colleagues, joking about the growth of “Leadership Studies” programs, suggested that we should probably offer a “Followership Studies” minor. From his mouth to God’s ear. Or, at least, to David Brooks’… Maybe before we can build great monuments to leaders we have to relearn the art of following. Democratic followership … More David Brooks, Erasmus, and Luther Walk into a Bar…

The Curious Case of the Popularity of Wm. Wilberforce

During Bethel’s commencement exercises last month, our speaker told the soon-to-be graduates the story of the British evangelical politician William Wilberforce, who dedicated his life to the abolition of the slave trade (accomplished in 1807) and then slavery itself (just before his death in 1833). Up on stage among the berobed faculty, my friend Sam … More The Curious Case of the Popularity of Wm. Wilberforce

The Kony Kerfuffle

In yesterday’s links post, I mentioned the “Kony 2012” film recently released by the group Invisible Children, and the strong criticisms it received. I linked to a couple of particularly thoughtful posts by one of my former students, a development worker now living in Uganda, where Kony first came to infamy. Brief overview: Joseph Kony … More The Kony Kerfuffle