• Engage

    How Bad is This Conversion Therapy Thing?

    As pro-LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) voices and values grow louder and more insistent in the culture, what about those people of faith who experience same-sex attraction and don’t want it? What are they supposed to do with feelings and desires at odds with their faith? How are they supposed to learn to reconcile their faith and their sexuality? The cultural narrative has become, “LGBT represents normal, healthy variations in human sexuality, so everyone should support and celebrate all forms of sexual diversity. And if you don’t, we’re going to punish you, shame you, and squelch your voice.” Part of the punishing and shaming includes outrage over “Conversion Therapy.”…

  • Engage

    What It Means to Be a Woman (Not for Women Only)

    In a seminary Sexual Ethics course I co-teach, my co-worker and I have students survey churches' curriculum relating to manhood and womanhood. Consistently these students find that evangelical curriculum writers have gone to biblical instruction directed to the "wife" or "husband" and extrapolated from the spouse-specific commands to support their ideas of gender. But wife and husband are only subsets of man and woman. So we need to start at a different place. In this episode of The Table Podcast, I talk with Darrell Bock and Kymberli Cook about that place as we discuss gender, sexuality, maleness, femaleness, masculinity, femininity, and how men and women need each other. We end…

  • Engage

    Teaching Teens about Rape Culture and Modesty

       Today I'm happy to feature a guest contributor, Laura Hercher, one of my students, talking about something that has certainly been in the news—rape culture. Her thoughts address the intersection of rape culture and what churches teach teens about modesty and personal responsibility:  As someone in a ministry position and involved in a church, I find there are many ways I can work to combat rape culture. The biggest way is to prevent it from continuing into the next generation by teaching youth how to think about these issues. I think one of the most powerful ways we can do this is by changing the way we teach youth about…

  • Engage

    The Pink Elephant in the Room

    It’s obvious, but no one will acknowledge it. It’s awkward. No one will discuss it. It’s touchy. No one will confront it. For some, it's enslaving. For others, it's saving. For some, a disease. For others, a cure. Masturbation. Eight years ago Dr. Sandi Glahn posted an article on the rosy pachyderm. It has over 120,000 views. Distorted views of sexuality have paralyzed Christians far too long. While the church is beginning to discuss pornography, we also need to embrace a more robust theology of sexuality, including solo-sexuality. I would like to open a healthy discussion in answer to this question: Is solo-sex actually sex? Why or why not?

  • Poison Corrosive

    A Date Which Will Live in Infamy

    “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). The word “infamy” is defined by Dictionary.com as “extremely bad reputation, public reproach, or strong condemnation as the result of a shameful, criminal, or outrageous act”. Thus one year ago today, June 26th, 2015, the day the Supreme Court of the United States declared that homosexuals had a Constitutional right to marry, is a date of infamy. The Court based their decision upon… well… upon philosophic talk that was devoid of wisdom. After all, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom” (Proverbs 1:7, NIV 1984). The word “fools” describes…

  • Engage

    About Bruce/Caitlyn…

    Hermaphrodite, 1–2 century AD, The Uffizi, Florence Ever since the news broke about Bruce Jenner/Caitlyn, discussions about gender, sex changes, and intersex realities have filled my social media feeds. One chilling remark someone made was that the church may soon hit our Galileo moment. Indeed, some Christians are using funky hermeneutics to support easy answers—and these folks sound a lot like those who labeled heliocentric views as heretical. For example, some quote Genesis’s beautiful words, “Male and female he made them” (Gen. 1:27). And this, they say, means that people are born either one or the other. Period. Except Moses wrote that description about life in Eden. And today people…

  • Impact

    23 Books Reviewed in 23 Minutes

    “The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, And all the sweet serenity of books” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. “A book lying idle on a shelf is wasted ammunition” – Henry Miller. Here is my exhaustive review of all but one of the books I read in 2014. Skim the list to see if something piques your interest. Peruse as you please. Skip what does not interest you. For my reading list reviews for the past few years click on any of the following: 2011, 2012, or 2013. Now here we go, set your timer to 23 minutes. Go!   1. “Save Me From Myself” subtitled “How I found God, quit…

  • Don't Tread - Pro-Life

    A Christian Conservative Goes to College, part 8 (Critical Thinking and the Abortion Debate continued)

    “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20, NASB). I have mentioned how the Critical Thinking Class seemed geared towards attacking conservative positions and Christian beliefs; in particular, one of the major assignments was for the class to read two major pro-abortion arguments, A Defense of Abortion by Judith Jarvis Thomson and The Moral and Legal Status of Abortion by Mary Anne Warren.[1] My last column was a minor critique of Thomson’s argument, but should I leave Ms. Warren to her own devices? As the Apostle Paul often…

  • Don't Tread - Pro Abortion

    A Christian Conservative Goes to College, part 7 (Critical Thinking and the Abortion Debate)

    “These men turn night into day; in the face of darkness they say, ‘Light is near’” (Job 17:12, NIV). In my last column in this series I mentioned how our Critical Thinking (Philosophy 111) Class seemed geared towards attacking conservative positions and Christian beliefs. In particular, one of the major assignments was for the class to read two major pro-abortion arguments, A Defense of Abortion by Judith Jarvis Thomson[1] and The Moral and Legal Status of Abortion by Mary Anne Warren.[2] It was at least mentioned that there was a famous counter argument by American bioethicist Baruch Brody; though I could not find his work online.