This page has moved to a new address.

Think Christianly

Think Christianly: May 2008

Friday, May 30, 2008

Genetic Testing Gets Personal

Genetics. Fascinating, but doesn't affect me right? Wrong. In a Washington Post Article in March, Genetics gets real personal. And we need to know about this and speak to it from a Christian worldview that affirms the dignity of human persons. When a market economy meets genetics, things could get out of hand--and quick--when it comes to your genetic information.

Good news though. Congress did pass a a bill barring genetic discrimination (see article in Scientific American). But how this will be enforced and regulated will be vital.

A great book, from a Christian perspective on these kinds of issues, is Biotechnology and the Human Good.

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, May 29, 2008

N.Y. to Recognize Out-of-State Gay 'Marriage'

Well, the ramifications of the CA decision to legalize 'gay marriage' are now being felt in NY. In a recent decision by Gov. David Patterson, another high profile state has come on board. Click here for an article on this and then here is another one.

This could have far reaching implications for marriages, families, laws (like custody battles of divorced same-sex marriages) and children (who, ideally, need a loving mother and father).

To see what all the presidential candidates' take is on same sex marriage, click here.

This is a public conversation that needs to be had, but Christians need to remember the manner in which to have it; with civility and tolerance (classically defined). Every person on this planet is created in the image of God and is worthy of respect and dignity. Period. But treating someone with dignity does not mean we must endorse / affirm their views or choices or even to say that these choices don't have consequences (some foreseen others not). Caring deeply about issues of great importance and arguing for a particular view does not make one bigoted or intolerant. At any rate, this issue is not going away.

I am not going to get into today the many unfortunate responses (e.g., jeering / discrimination etc.) sometimes arising from those who claim the name of Christ. Any such joking, hate-speech (properly understood), and double-standards should be repented of.

For a Christian perspective on this issue, see the article Same-Sex Marriage Challenges and Responses by Greg Koukl

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Wishing Dr. Michael Easley Well

Michael Easley, due to health reasons, has had to resign from Moody Bible Institute. I have great respect for this man and pray his health improves. Along with my friend Mark, we were able to travel with him and Moody to Israel in the summer of 2006--needless to say it was a life-changing experience and Dr. Easley is the "real deal."



Our Great Danger...

This morning I want to share a quote that has been rattling around in my soul for a few weeks now and I think it is very perceptive. I think it puts its finger on an "occupational hazard" for us Christians who live in America today. It is from a book I've been reading, "The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People" by John Ortberg (a very insightful piece of writing and easy to read).

"For many of us the great danger is not that we will renounce our faith. It is that we will become so distracted and rushed and preoccupied that we will settle for a mediocre version of it. We will just skim our lives instead of actually living them."

Labels: , , ,

Monday, May 26, 2008

Am I more than my brain?

Fresh off a week at Fall Creek Falls in TN, I wanted to share a little bit about the brain and the soul. Is there a soul? What is the difference between the brain and the soul? Hasn't modern neuroscience shown that everything about consciousness is fully explicable in the language of physics and chemistry relegating discussion of the soul to the intellectual dust bin reserved for fairy's and the like? Actually no. And in principle, it never will (for those familiar with this, only correlations between brain and soul states can be show). Take some time to read the following short articles by JP Moreland and Dallas Willard...they are important for many reasons which will become clear as you read.

"The Argument from Consciousness" by JP Moreland
"Grey Matter and the Soul" by Dallas Willard

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, May 19, 2008

Christianity and Knowledge

Science is not the only source of knowledge about our world and it is vital that Christians embrace this fact and help our culture to recognize it as well. Take a few minutes to read this post by JP Moreland on Knowledge. This is important stuff to appreciate.

Labels: , ,

Friday, May 16, 2008

California Supreme Court strikes down a state ban on same-sex marriage

More about this in the days ahead. This is an important decision and it essentially goes against the will of the people of California as well as the clear language of the California State Constitution. There will be fall out politically and culturally from this decision. For a summary of the decision, click here. The court decision was 4-3. Those in the dissenting opinion wrote (i.e., those seeking to uphold traditional definition of marriage in this case):

"If there is to be a further sea change in the social and legal understanding of marriage itself, that evolution should occur by similar democratic means. The majority forecloses this ordinary democratic process, and, in doing so, oversteps its authority."

For an article describing the day after impact and responses, click here.

Labels: ,

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Is Our Pain God’s Problem? N.T. Wright and Bart Ehrman Discuss

I came across an interesting "Blogalogue" (i.e., a dialogue in blog format), by two prolific New Testament scholars on the problem of evil, pain, and suffering and God's (if there is such a being) relation to it. I, of course, am a theist and a Christian at that. And there are different ways to address this issue (from the logical or evidential to the personal / existential). It is worth a read...I enjoy NT Wright's work.

(from beliefnet) Is our pain God’s problem? If God is good and all-powerful, why does he allow so much suffering? These kinds of questions—sometimes called the problem of theodicy—have long bothered believers and nonbelievers alike. These questions are especially pressing now as we face the AIDS pandemic, widespread hunger, and environmental degradation—not to mention the grief that humans can cause one another. Our two guests for this new Beliefnet Blogalogue have devoted part of their lives to addressing these issues. Bart Ehrman is James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the author of God's Problem and Misquoting Jesus, among many other titles. N.T. Wright is the Bishop of Durham for the Church of England and has taught at McGill, Oxford, and Cambridge. His books include Surprised By Hope, Evil and the Justice of God, and several other titles.

To read this interesting and revealing interaction, click here.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Summit Ministries Training Students to Think Christianly

I wanted to draw attention to an organization that is helping students cultivate a Christian worldview. If you are a high school or college student looking for a wonderful way to grow in your faith, consider going to a Summit Conference this summer.

Here is what Summit Ministries is...

"Summit Ministries is an educational Christian ministry whose very existence is a response to our current post-Christian culture. Today, countless Christian youth have fallen victim to the popular ideas of our modern world. Most have adopted these ideas into their own worldview, while still others go on to renounce their Christian faith altogether.

Summit views its role in God's kingdom as a catalyst to counteract this alarming trend. However, our ultimate goal supersedes simply training. As Christians are challenged to stand strong in their faith and defend truth, they will also be equipped to have a positive influence on the society in which they live."

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Praying for Myanmar in wake of cyclone

Please join me in praying for the people of Myanmar (Burma). Especially pray that the corrupt government would allow aid and supplies into the country. Currently, it seems they are playing politics with the peoples' lives. There are tons of ministries helping out. One such ministry is Samaritan's Purse.

To find out what is going on in Myanmar and how you can help, click here.

Labels: ,

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Jonathan Morrow on The Harvest Show for Welcome to College

Well, I had my first taste of doing TV today and it was a wonderful experience! I want to thank everyone at The Harvest Show. They invited me on to talk about my book Welcome to College: A Christ-follower's Guide for the Journey. You can watch it here (it is a 10 minute segment toward the end of the show).

I wrote this book to encourage and equip students to flourish as followers of Jesus Christ in college (secular or Christian). It would be a good High school graduation gift for churches and youth groups to give away. Parents would be able to read these short chapters and then work a Christian perspective on these issues into their everyday rhythms of life as a family--dinner, driving, or watching TV. Current college students will be able to find plenty of help and encouragement for whatever issue, opportunity, or challenge they faced that day.

If you are visiting my site for the first time as a result of the show, welcome! You were rerouted to my blog. We are putting the finishing touches on our redesign of Think Chrisitanly "exists to encourage and equip Christ-followers to think Christianly about all of life."

Feel free to leave comments on my blog or post questions; I'd love to hear from you!

"Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."--Romans 12:1-2

Labels: ,

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Muslims Coming to Christ

Is God at work in the world? Not just in Tennessee or California or New York or wherever you happen to call home; but other places? Absolutely! I came across some incredible news and I wanted to share it. It is about Muslims coming to Christ in powerful and amazing ways. Take a minute to read, reflect, pray, and worship.

In December 2001, Sheikh Ahmad al Qataani, a leading Saudi cleric, appeared on a live interview on Aljazeera satellite television to confirm that, sure enough, Muslims were turning to Jesus in alarming numbers. "In every hour, 667 Muslims convert to Christianity," Al Qataani warned. "Every day, 16,000 Muslims convert to Christianity. Every year, 6 million Muslims convert to Christianity." Stunned, the interviewer interrupted the cleric. "Hold on! Let me clarify. Do we have six million converting from Islam to Christianity?" Al Qataani repeated his assertion. "Every year," the cleric confirmed, adding, "a tragedy has happened."

One of the most dramatic developments is that many Muslims throughout the Middle East and even in the United States are seeing dreams and visions of Jesus. They are coming into churches explaining that they have already converted and now need a Bible and guidance on how to follow Jesus. -- Joel C. Rosenberg

Labels: , ,

Monday, May 5, 2008

Part 2 of Welcome to College Excerpt on

The second part of an excerpt from Welcome to College: A Christ-follower's Guide for the Journey is now available (click here). It deals with how we go about discovering the will of God. If you would like to read part 1, click here. If you are in college or you know someone who is; then you may find this encouraging.

"Teach me how to live, O LORD. Lead me along the right path."--Psalm 27:11

Labels: , ,