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PodcastPolitics

Reformational Politics: An Interview with Jim Skillen

With much attention being given to the evangelical support of President Trump, it's easy to become polarized and assume Christians must align with one side or the the other. In this interview with Jim Skillen, former director of the Center for Public Justice, the focus is on a reformational view of politics: politics as an important part of God's good creation that seeks human flourishing and the common good.
October 29, 2020
ChurchCulturePodcastPolitics

Justice Walk: Race, Protest, and Faith in a small Iowa Town.

https://youtu.be/pJNkKlHkz5w On Friday, June 5, a Justice Walk took place In Orange City, Iowa. Orange City is a rural Northwest Iowa community that is predominately white, protestant, and politically conservative. How does a conversation about race and justice happen in a town like Orange City? What does protest look like? I talked with Rahn Franklin and Caleb Arnett, two people involved in organizing the event, to find out. Click on the video above to hear the interview.
June 24, 2020
Uncategorized

Ending the Culture War: The Way of Saint Francis

The polarization of the United States is most recently symbolized by the mask—a small piece of cloth with two rubber bands that has become a symbol for a much broader conflict. (For an excellent theological discussion of mask wearing see Cambria Kaltwasser’s post.) Many Evangelicals have thrown their support behind President Trump as a calculated strategy to win what they see as a “culture war”. Feeling their way of life is in danger, they support President Trump to ensure conservative…
June 22, 2020
CultureInside Out

Thanking God for Bob’s Bar

A couple of Fridays ago, some friends and I took the hourlong trip to an off-the-beaten-path dive bar in Nebraska – Bob’s Bar, in Martinsburg. It’s not much to look at from the outside. Even when you get in the place, it’s not that great – a pool table, a bar and some tables shoved together in the back. The plates are mismatched remnants of what seem like 1950s tableware, and the giant fan blowing in the back means quite a bit of…
October 31, 2018
ChurchPolitics

The Syrophoenician Woman and the President

There’s a story in Mark’s gospel about how Jesus tries to get away from the crowd, only to be found by an unnamed woman. Jesus had just finished arguing with the religious leaders about what makes a person clean or unclean, a discussion prompted by their righteous anger at the disciples for not washing their hands before eating. He tells them it’s not the outside but the inside that matters. The Syroephonician woman enters the story as one who breaks…
October 6, 2018
Inside OutScience

The Rocks and Colliding Black Holes Cry Out

“Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, order your disciples to stop.’ He answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.’” – Luke 19:39-40 “Did Adam and Eve have belly buttons?” There I stood in front of 29 eighth-grade students, my daughter among them, having to speak truth about Adam and Eve’s navels. “Probably,” I responded. There was a gasp, then an explosion of chattering. “How could they, if God created…
April 30, 2016
Uncategorized

Leave Metallica Alone!

FEBRUARY 2012: AS WE SEE IT by Jason Lief Numerous times I have been asked, "Have you read that book about Metallica going to church?" (John Van Sloten, The Day Metallica Came to Church: Searching for the Everywhere God in Everything). Every time I awkwardly respond, "Uh . . . no." I can’t blame people for asking. I'm a metal fan, after all. I grew up on Metallica. I learned to play guitar listening to Metallica. So of course those…
October 30, 2014