You Think Politics is Brutal Now?

I would be very interested to know what the weather was like in Washington, DC on Thursday, May 22, 1856. It had been an unusually long winter across the Midwest and Eastern seaboard of the United States that year. The capital itself had seen remarkably cold temperatures and above-average snowfall, followed by cold rains lasting well into May. Then, on May 23, a brief heatwave pushed temperatures into mid-90s Fahrenheit in New York City, but … Continue reading

A Different Jesus? (Book Review)

Long is the list of differences that separate Mormonism from Christianity, but one of the greatest is how each faith understands the person and role of Jesus Christ. For all but four years of its history, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (aka: LDS church, Mormons) has had the name Jesus in its official title, but how this “Jesus” has been described by Mormon leaders has led most of the professing Christian world … Continue reading

Accused!

If someone is accused, should they be automatically presumed guilty? This is not really a new question but an age-old issue. For example, in 1642 Salem Village, Massachusetts  over 200 people were accused of practicing witchcraft. Most, like Caribbean slave, Tituba, “confessed,” hoping to avoid conviction by becoming an “informer” leveling accusations against others. Nearly all the accused were Christians and church attenders, and if the accused had merely “confessed” their witchcraft, and “repented” of … Continue reading

Beware the Rumor Weed

(This originally appeared in the Summer/Fall 2001 edition of the MCOI Journal) Don’t you just love the VeggieTales videos? They communicate deep truths to children in a way that is both comical and easy to understand. One of our favorites is Larry-Boy and the Rumor Weed. In the story, Larry-Boy, the large superhero cucumber, tries to save the town from a giant Rumor Weed. The Rumor Weed was sown by a small “little white lie” … Continue reading

Spirit in the Sky

On the way back from speaking at Wheatland Congregational Church in Wheatland, Michigan, the 1969 Norman Greenbaum song, “Spirit in the Sky,” kept popping into my head. As it happens, my friend Fred Slagle (who is the pastor of Wheatland) and I have similar personalities and share some common experiences. We are both part of the cry-baby boomer generation; we were not believers until we were married adults with children; and we both loved  … Continue reading

The Virtue of Being Fallible

Recently, I posted an article on Facebook about how the Chinese government is treating Islam as mental illness. As Martin Luther King said, injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. So while I vehemently disagree with Islam about the nature of God and Jesus, I have no desire to see them persecuted. Then someone made one of those comments that betrays itself as nothing more than moral grandstanding. You know the kinds of … Continue reading