• Engage,  Uncategorized

    You Are Free: A Lesson from the Greco-Roman World

    Most of us know that the world of the earliest Christians included slavery. The book of Philemon details the return of the slave Onesimus. And elsewhere, Paul flips the usual household codes, addresses slaves directly (scandalous!), and tells masters they, too, have a master. But even more personally, Paul refers to all believers as manumitted from sin and free to serve our new master: righteousness. Here are three examples from Paul’s letters. Notice what he says about who owns the believer. Do you not know that if you present yourselves as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or obedience resulting…

  • Plaster Eyeless Baby

    Slavery and Abortion in a Nutshell

    “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” Proverbs 14:14 In these most recent heated debates, I thought some food for thought might be appropriate: SLAVERY existed in America for about 300 years. It is possible that up to Approximately 60 million human beings died in and due to the American version of slavery during that time.[1] Half the country believed they were “free” to own slaves and that it was their “right.” (Constitutional right, certainly. God-given right even.) Many argued that blacks and Africans were not even human beings but were property. Who were others to tell them what to do with their own property?…

  • Skull Carving

    Rebellion and Exponential Evil

    “For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but threw them into hell and locked them up in chains in utter darkness, to be kept until the judgment, and if he did not spare the ancient world, but did protect Noah, a herald of righteousness, along with seven others, when God brought a flood on an ungodly world, and if he turned to ashes the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah when he condemned them to destruction, having appointed them to serve as an example to future generations of the ungodly, and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man in anguish over the debauched lifestyle of lawless men, (for while…

  • Lincoln

    A House Divided

    “If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand” (Mark 3:25). The headlines recently, in America, were certainly unsettling for a news and commentary junkie like myself. The United States seemed to be imploding, committing suicide on live television. For some time now I have believed that we are witnessing the self-destruction of the United States. I often think of the words of Abraham Lincoln, who said, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” History will show whether this proves true or not. On Friday morning July 8th, many…

  • Engage

    Why the Biblical Defense of Traditional Marriage is NOT like the “Biblical” Defense of Slavery

    “Evangelicals will more or less come to embrace homosexuality in the next 20 to 30 years,” Jeremy Thomas, professor of Sociology at Idaho State University, predicts. “I would put all my money on that statement.”   They will "grow out of" their disapproval of homosexuality and gay marriage.  Just like they like they "grew out of" their approval of slavery based on race. So goes the conventional wisdom.   But there is a vast gulf between the Biblical argument to defend slavery and the Biblical argument to defend homosexuality and gay marriage. In order to defend the enslavement of blacks based on race, white Southern antebellum preachers had to resort…

  • Engage

    Recipe for a Delicious Movie: Belle

    Looking for a great summer movie? Take one part Girl with the Pearl Earring, one part Amazing Grace (the Wilberforce movie); one part Pride and Prejudice; stir in terrific writing and acting; serve in a Downton Abby setting and you have Belle—a rich and moving story of love, legal drama, and the fight to eradicate the plague of slavery.   Movies don't usually move me to tears but…the painting below provided a clue to a powerful story…   Girl with the Pearl Earring:  Like the movie/book inspired by Jan Vermeer’s alluring painting, this movie too is inspired by a painting. When Misan Sagay, a young, black British doctor and screenwriter,…

  • Engage

    Our Freedoms

    Today, many Americans will grill burgers, eat red, white and blue cake, watch fireworks and maybe even a parade. Today is a day of celebration in the U.S.A. We celebrate our independence from Great Britain since 1776. As Americans, we are grateful for the freedoms we have because of the great work and sacrifices of others. And yet so many live without even a fraction of our freedoms. So many in the world live without the freedom to speak, the freedom to learn, the freedom to travel, the freedom to worship, the freedom to choose work, the freedom to eat and on and on. So many live in slavery of…