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Wednesday, July 20th, my cell phone rang. A number I didn't recognize showed up, and I answered. On the other end was Arren Kimbel-Sannit, a reporter with Montana Free Press in Helena. He wanted to know if I had time for an interview regarding J.D. Hall. I still want to know how he got my number. Nevertheless, on September 13th, the result of that …
 
What is ideology, per se? And what is an ideologue? And are we entirely sure these are bad things to be or have? Definition of ideology (from Merriam-Webster) 1a: a manner or the content of thinking characteristic of an individual, group, or culture b: the integrated assertions, theories and aims that constitute a sociopolitical program c: a system…
 
Much animated discussion of church polity this past week has me wanting to delve into what the various general arrangements in Christendom are, where they come from, and what we should make of them. In this episode, I should like to share several resources with you - from the Encyclopedia Britannica, The Gospel Coalition, Theopedia, and GotQuestion…
 
I hear a lot of talk in our day about unity. As a citizen of the United States of America, it’s even embedded in the name of my native country. But I hear calls for unity in the American Church in particular. And this leads me to a simple question. What is unity? And what are we to make of calls for being united? In searching the ESV for the word, …
 
Following up on our last episode, JP Chavez shared a thought with me regarding Doug Wilson and what to make of him, asking whether we should be more suspicious of 94 ecclesiastical charges being brought against Wilson in his own denomination, CREC, then all 94 charges being dropped. The short answer is that I think JP is right, and we should be mor…
 
My wife Lauren recently sent me a link on Facebook to a post by a certain Facebook page which seems dedicated to exposing all the worst and nastiest scandals related to Moscow, Idaho pastor Doug Wilson. Titled 'A Timeline of Controversial Pastor Douglas Wilson of Moscow, Idaho,' there is an ever-loving lot of material here, complete with many insin…
 
Before we delve into the Old Testament book of Ezekiel in this episode, be warned that we will be talking here about subjects which some parents might not want their children hearing about just yet, so I tell you up-front lest I offend anyone’s sensibilities by surprise. That said, I just this week learned about an old Jewish rabbinical tradition t…
 
Credentialism is our word of the day. And why it matters is that there is an ignorance, folly, and hubris in assuming that everyone needs to go to college in order to do well professionally, or amount to something. In our day, there are far too many credentials handed out for the money, but not as much for their merit or that of those who will hold…
 
"The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown." So says Genesis 6:4 in the ESV. But what does it mean, and who were the sons of God? We basically have two sets of answers – the first …
 
If you voted for and supported former President Donald Trump, and would do so again, the speech current President Joe Biden gave in Philadelphia this past Thursday is a warning. Not only do the Democrat and Republican establishment see you as wrong, they see you as dangerous. More specifically, they see you as a threat to their vision of the Americ…
 
A friend of a friend asks you if the following statement is true according to your beliefs: 'God does not love you because you do good works, but rather, that you do good works because God bestows that gift to you.' The short answer is 'Yes.' The longer answer is found in John 14:15 and 1 John 4:19. “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” …
 
Gradually making my way through ‘Summa Theologica: Volume I’ on audiobook, yesterday’s reading featured Aquinas talking about eternity and time. Consequently, here’s a mind-blowing idea for you: God is His own eternity. But what does that mean? I confess to not fully knowing. Even so, these are not useless or trivial ideas to contemplate. Aquinas s…
 
Should we fight all the time, and always be criticizing, and ever only be against things? Some, who at least think they are good at fighting, and take up polemics as a matter of course, yet seem not to know anything other than war, demonstrate by their actions and ways of relating that their answer is 'yes.' Polemics, by the way, is contentious rhe…
 
Some charming quotes this week from Democrats – including one current governor, one candidate for governor, and even the President of the United States - with regards to Republicans are worth a glance. “And we are here to say that the era of Trump, and Zeldin and Molinaro, just jump on a bus and head down to Florida where you belong, ok?” “Get out …
 
Sometimes God’s people suffer for the sake of righteousness. When that is the case, we are called to not be afraid of those who would punish righteousness from corrupt motives. Instead, we are to prioritize, and to make preparation for, answering accusers with gentleness and respect, and with a good conscience, so that those who hate our good behav…
 
This past week, Not the Bee posted a resurfaced 1989 clip of George Soros and Joe Biden talking about the "de-nationalization" and "radical reorganization" of economies. The two were specifically addressing Poland after the fall of the Soviet Union and the collapse of communism – at least predicated on the Soviet expression of it. It's surreal to s…
 
Is motherhood a woman’s highest calling? It is, according to someone Jen Oshman - author of Cultural Counterfeits - encountered at a baby shower a few years ago. As she wrote in a blog post for Crossway.org on August 1st of this year, the statement hit her like a slap in the face since one friend she had with her at the event was single and longed …
 
Preferring a narrowly defined gospel, why have so many American evangelicals in recent decades not invested more in intellectual pursuits? Mark A. Noll here in 'The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind' wants to know, and we should want to know along with him. As he opens, "The scandal of the evangelical mind is that there is not much of an evangelical …
 
My cousin Tim Mullet recently answered my question about examples in the Old or New Testaments of God's people rebuking one another for emotions. Let us consider, then, the deaths of Nadab and Abihu in Leviticus 10, as well as the death of Absalom in 2 Samuel 18-19:15, since those are the examples Tim has submitted for consideration. As Tim rightly…
 
Famed Welsh preacher and physician Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981), in a sermon series on Romans 1 which he started in 1958, once had this to say about why Hitler had never worried him. “I was never worried for a second about a man like Hitler; it was enough for me to read the thirty-seventh Psalm, and there I read of a man like him spreading himsel…
 
We need to take a look at the cost-benefit to the American people for the FBI, DOJ, IRS, USDA, and CDC, and other similar departments, bureaus, services, agencies, and centers. And would it be a good thing on the whole if some of these federal agencies were abolished entirely? There is no disputing they separately and together represent a kind of s…
 
Jesus answered them, in John 8:31-38 “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." So also, we do well to consider that freedom and truth are inseparably linked to the truth in God's economy. J…
 
The Gospel Coalition highlighted in a recent tweet a quote from Sam Allberry."We don't live in a moralistic age where we need to prove people to be sinners. We live in an anxious age where we need to prove to people they're worth something."Even if Allberry is right that we live in an anxious age, it does not necessarily follow that a crisis of sel…
 
Prominently lauded and recommended on the book cover by Daniel Kahneman – co-author of ‘The Undoing Project,’ along with Amon Tversky - 'Nudge' is the practical application extension of Kahneman and Tversky's theory and research in behavioral economics. To give just one example, Thaler and Sunstein brainstormed ideas for normalizing gay marriage in…
 
A YouTube short was sent me by my cousin Micah Hershberger this week. In it, Kevin O’Leary, from the popular TV show Shark Tank, shares a story about a young man who asked him his opinion about a major life choice. He was running a startup business out of his dorm room, making $5 million a year in free cash flow, but his fiancé was going to leave h…
 
I am almost through ‘The Histories’ by Polybius, and hope to wrap up the last few hours today. Now I remember how my friend Joseph Crampton recommended I dig into Plutarch’s ‘Parallel Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans’ next, and that title is calling my name. My wife is also encouraging me in this, since our kids study Plutarch as part of our ho…
 
Besides enjoying in-depth discussion with my friends Paul Pavlik and JP Chavez while we all three listened through it together, this book made me curious to read Augustine’s fuller commentary directly. I can’t seem to find a copy online, except from AbeBooks.com where a translation in two volumes published by Paulist Press in 1982, and translated b…
 
That we are now observing symptoms of an ongoing push for global communism seems self-evident to not only me, but many of the folks I talk with privately. Whether everyone else is convinced yet is somewhat beside the point to my larger point. I would say at a minimum, then, that only a person willfully ignorant could deny that under the guise of pr…
 
Mark Tooley recently interviewed Joshua Mitchell for Providence Magazine to discuss the relationship between conservative political action and Protestant Christianity. In the interview, Mitchell remarks that our policy discussions in America still center around Protestant Christian concepts like transgression and propitiation, even though Protestan…
 
Are anger, fear, and anxiety sins to be repented of? Some believe so, pointing to the presence of commands in the Bible to put away anger, fear not, and be not anxious for anything. We must know what to make of these one way or another, without either being antinomian or excessively severe to those who are suffering more than sinning when they feel…
 
Should we regard Nouthetic counseling as biblical counseling? And are these two things synonymous, or is there perhaps a certain inherent unreasonableness to the Nouthetic approach which we do well to mark and avoid in the interest of being more faithful to the whole counsel of God? In so far as I consider these questions in this episode, I want to…
 
Should Christians just do what we’re told? Some say almost always “yes” to this question. But there is more we need to consider. For instance, what happens to godly self-control if someone who claims authority actually is superseding control over us which we should be exercising over ourselves? This leads into a whole host of additional questions. …
 
A video was sent me by my neighbor two houses down yesterday. Together for the Gospel published it to their YouTube channel back in 2016 of a panel discussion at one of their conferences. Titled 'Celebrity Pastor: Indecent Exposure?' and starring C.J. Mahaney, Carl Trueman, David Platt, Ligon Duncan, Matt Chandler, and Thabiti Anyabwile, the topic …
 
Confrontation and resolution of private sin of one Christian brother against another should be handled as privately as possible, according to what Christ says in Matthew 18:15-20. Go privately to your brother first. If he won't listen, take along two or three witnesses and try again. If he still isn't listening, take the offending brother before th…
 
It's been several years since I first saw the 'Honest Preacher' video by YouTube channel 'Friend Dog Studios' in which a pastor wearing vestments gets up to deliver his sermon on a Sunday morning, but instead breaks down in frustration with his congregation's constant tendency toward sin and folly. He took a vow not to say who's the worst, he tells…
 
What is peace? And what does it mean to seek it and pursue it? And what does it mean to make it? By contrast, what does it mean to be contending for the faith? And what is militancy? We too often in our day conflate being peaceable with pacifism - and manliness with malignancy, on a related note. But moderation is a virtue whether we’re talking abo…
 
As Robert Burns says in his Scots poem, 'To A Louse, On Seeing One on a Lady's Bonnet at Church': "O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us To see oursels as ithers see us! It wad frae mony a blunder free us, An' foolish notion: What airs in dress an' gait wad lea'e us, An' ev'n devotion!" We can only speculate what sort of poem the louse would have writ…
 
We should all remember that Christ in the Scriptures does receive the nations as his inheritance. Political dominance is his due. But the trouble with Satan’s temptation in the desert was not that Christ had no business receiving the nations, then. Instead, the trouble with Satan's temptation is that Satan is in no place to give these things to Chr…
 
What if I told you that the creators of the beloved fantasy worlds found in The Chronicles of Narnia and The Lord of the Rings once went to see Walt Disney’s Snow White in theaters, and came away hating not only the picture but also utterly loathing and despising the broader approach to the work by that man Disney himself?--- Send in a voice messag…
 
Having now taken the lead at Protestia, David Morrill livestreamed a video on Thursday night answering the over 5-hour expose released the day prior by YouTube channel 'Servus Christi,' replete with first-hand testimony, police reports, and a chat transcript with a member of the leadership at FBC Sidney regarding the current situation there. Morril…
 
A friend and I got together for dinner this week and discussed his answer to a question I asked him several weeks ago about my podcast. What precisely that question was escapes me now, but it was something along the lines of what he thought of the podcast, and what might be some areas of improvement to pursue, particularly where the quality of the …
 
AD Robles, like Jon Harris at Conversations That Matter, is someone I've appreciated work by from a distance. That said, he doesn't know me and I don't know him. But I do know he published a podcast episode today which was intended to speak to the current situation surrounding JD Hall of Sidney, Montana. In his episode - which is not very long, but…
 
Jon Harris over at the Conversations That Matter podcast has done some fine work covering inroads by social justice advocates and those promoting CRT from within the Southern Baptist Convention in recent years. His episode yesterday touched on the situation with JD Hall, and I'd like to take some time to answer key points he makes about his engagem…
 
Music practice finished up, then my two eldest sons and I drove home from church. It was 10:30PM when we set out. But I recalled as we pulled into the driveway that we had still been unable to find my building access badge for work when we left. It fell out of the stretchy lanyard sometime during the afternoon, I think; but none of us seem to know …
 
Michel Hendricks, author of 'The Other Half of Church,' is former pastor of spiritual formation at Flatirons Community Church in Lafayette, Colorado. Over 25 years of teaching and training others has taken him all over the world. With a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Colorado in Boulder, plus…
 
Elon Musk is backing out of buying Twitter. In an official statement released to the public, Musk claims Twitter has refused to produce all of the documentation requested despite having months to do so. Twitter is threatening to sue to force Musk to follow through at the originally agreed price-point. I'm not so sure this is the end, though, and I …
 
"If a woman decides to become a teacher, she is told she has the most important job in the world. She is told she is training up the next generation. That she is raising up scientists, doctors and artists. That her work is noble, sacrificial and priceless." "But if another woman decides to be a stay at home mom, and gives her next 20 years to the t…
 
During lunchtime yesterday, I gave a white board talk to our kids about definitions and differences between theology and religion and worldview. And in the course of discussion, I wanted to emphasize to my sons that one of the very important differences between the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob compared with the deities of other religions is tha…
 
I've been thinking about the lyrics to the song 'Simple Man,' and I have questions. Like, why didn't anyone give Lynyrd Skynyrd more to go on than this when he was young? And why was being a simple man the thing to shoot for? And where was his father? To be sure, we don't necessarily mean the same thing by "simple man" that the Bible does. But mayb…
 
Nearly a quarter of a millennium ago, the United States of America came into being with the signing of the Declaration of Independence by the Second Continental Congress. Not flighty or impulsively decided, the reasons for the separation from Great Britain needed to be told to the world. Thus the Founding Fathers did not just say they were an indep…
 
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