Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

Wheaton College has come out against the Obama administration healthcare mandate the infringes the freedom of religious institutions.  The Daily Herald reports:

Wheaton College and other distinctively Christian institutions are faced with a near and present threat to religious liberty.

Last August, the Department of Health and Human Services issued a mandate that the insurance plans for religious institutions (except churches) must provide coverage for all government-approved contraceptives. The list of required contraceptives includes abortifacient drugs — “morning after” and “week after” pills that claim the life of a fertilized egg.

During the period for public debate, the HHS received more than 200,000 comments objecting that the contraceptive mandate would violate the First Amendment rights of anyone who believed — for religious reasons — in the sanctity of human life. (more…)


Read Full Post »

The United Methodist Church is the largest of the old, declining, liberal Protestant denominations in the United States.  Nevertheless, it still claims 8.6 million members and many of them are Evangelical.  In its General Conference, held every four years, delegates come from the mission churches planted overseas in back in the days when liberal Protestants still did missions.  The African and other overseas churches are growing rapidly and are, unsurprisingly, overwhelmingly Evangelical.  They now number about 4.4 million members.  The Evangelicals in the US plus the mission church delegates from overseas now constitute a majority of General Conference delegates.

As Evangelical churches continue to grow in the US and especially overseas and the liberals die off, the denomination is expected to become more and more Evangelical.  So, interestingly, the UMC thus constitutes a kind of microcosm of world Protestantism today.  What does the future of world Protestantism look like?  Is is liberal? Ecumenical?  Liberation/Marxist? Feminist?  Or is it conservative, traditional and Evangelical?  General Conference is going on in Tampa this week, so let’s drop in and find out.   (more…)

Read Full Post »

I suppose it was just a matter of time until people within Evangelicalism began to call for unmarried people to start using contraception as the “lesser of two evils,” with the other evil being abortion.  This story in Christianity Today by Matthew Lee Anderson, Why Churches Shouldn’t Push Contraceptives to their Singles, is at once shocking and unsurprising.

As Western Evangelicalism continues to become bigger, more worldly and more accommodated to the late modern secular society around it, its resources to resist the depraved immorality of late, modern, Western decadence continue to deteriorate.

Pope John Paul II and a growing host of intelligent Catholic writers such as Mary Eberstadt, Christopher West and Janet Smith have put forward the thesis that contraception and abortion stand or fall together (more…)

Read Full Post »

Charles Murray is one of the most influential and controversial social scientists alive today.  His book, Losing Ground: American Social Policy 1950-1980, was very influential in the highly successful welfare reforms undertaken in the mid-90s in the US during a period of divided government while Bill Clinton was president.  His book, The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life, argued that intelligence is a better predictor of future success than socio-economic status and education level.  Much of Murray’s work challenges the conventional wisdom of modern progressives and liberals and defends the truth of traditional, conventional wisdom.  As a rather extreme libertarian, rather than a social conservative, Murray is an interesting writer because he comes to so many conclusions that support the conservative case for traditional family structure as the basis of a healthy society even though that is not a central tenet of his philosophical belief system.  It appears to be a matter of following the logical implications of the data he studies in his case.  He is divorced and re-married and not particularly religious, although he attends Quaker meetings with his second wife.

Murray’s new book, Coming Apart: The State of White America 1960-2010 (Random House, 2012), is a fascinating look at the social revolution of the past half-century.  The disastrous effects of the attempts to impose a European-style welfare state on America beginning with the Great Society programs of the 1960s on the black family have been well-documented.  But what has been going on in white America during this period?  Were the effects of welfare statism on black families different from their effects on white families or were those effects merely delayed slightly?   (more…)

Read Full Post »

Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis framework received worldwide attention in the 1920s, with intellectuals and artists flocking to his ideas. Historian Paul Johnson claims that “Gnosticism has always appealed to intellectuals” and by way of Freud’s work intellectuals found “a particular succulent variety.” (more…)

Read Full Post »

Hollywood and Christian Action

Stunned by the increasing acceptability of humanist dogma (such as moral relativism and socialism), conservative Christian leaders since the 1970s decided there was too much at stake for them not to voice a Bible-based morality in the public square. One of the biggest challenges for Christians is the movie industry and its disturbing tendency to promote promiscuity, homosexuality, and blasphemy. One particular showdown between Hollywood and conservative Christianity offers much food for thought. (more…)

Read Full Post »

See, you got to kick people out to be inclusive. . . especially religious types. See?

One of Vanderbilt University’s largest Christian student organizations has announced it will formally break ties with the Tennessee school, becoming the latest victim of the college’s intolerant policy on student club leadership.

Vanderbilt Catholic announced last week that is it unable to comply with the school’s new nondiscrimination policy that prohibits student groups from maintaining belief or faith-based qualifications for leadership positions. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Media Elites and Christ

Secular humanism became a dominating force in the media after the mid-1960s.  There is ample evidence of left-leaning journalists using many tricks of the trade to portray Christian ideas as unwise and at odds with “the people.” And in the mainstream media, it is all too common to see pack journalism promoting cynicism toward Christianity. Thirty years ago, data showed how the state of journalism was bad news for Christianity. Today it is actually worse. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Stanley Fish is a barbarian and a liberal fascist. He has joined the ranks of those who do not deserve to be argued with; such people only understand force and must be dealt with accordingly or else civilization is a lost cause.

Why would I say such a thing about one of the leading literary critics of our day? Bear with me and I’ll will explain all. (more…)

Read Full Post »

By Scott Masson,
Dept. of English, Tyndale University College
Fellow, Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity

My Christian life began in the midst of two controversies in the Anglican evangelical world of St. John’s College, Durham: one surrounding the recent ordination of women as priests, the other the call to give homosexual relationships a similar sanction.


Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »