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Crucifying Fear

“Hail to Dorothy, the Wicked Witch is dead!” With a simple bucket of water Dorothy slew the dreaded Witch, and it didn’t come a moment too soon. My six year old heart was about to beat out of my chest. But thanks to the strategically located bucket, disaster was evaded; that is, until the next[…]

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Courage to Stand

In April 1963, the nation’s attention was transfixed on Birmingham, Alabama, as thousands of black citizens, led by Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929-1968) and Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, protested racial discrimination. Despite the non-violent principles of the movement, King was arrested on Good Friday and put in solitary confinement. Days later Eugene “Bull” Connor, the[…]

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Revealing Snapshots, by Ralph E. MacKenzie

My friend, Ralph E. MacKenzie, has written a helpful volume titled Revealing Snapshots: People and Events That Shaped Christianity. I asked Ralph to tell our readers about it. Here is what he wrote: Let me begin with the central reason why I wrote this book. I discovered at seminary that I enjoyed church history, but found that[…]

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What It Was Like

Several friends have inquired into what it looks like to defend a PhD dissertation. Here is some reflection from my experience last Thursday. The defense combines the formality of an inquisition, the solemnity of a funeral, and the suspense of an Olympic floor exercise. Among the active participants (in the British system, at least), it includes the Chairman, your[…]

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Cultivating a ‘Heart’ for God

In modern parlance, “heart” and “vision” are often distinguished. We tend to associate vision with the mind while the heart is concerned with emotions. However, in the language and logic of Scripture this is not so. The heart functions as the locus of thought, the place where vision is developed. For example, the Psalmist writes,[…]

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Praying for the Church

As I consider the upcoming year with its various challenges and opportunities, there are many people, organizations, and issues in need of prayer. Reflecting on the full corpora of these needs, one identifies a common thread. Whether it pertains to individuals bereft of spiritual life, those who are ill, the needs of our nation, or suffering in the world,[…]

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Peace on Earth

How does Christmas contribute to peace? The Church univocally confesses that it comes through the babe in the manger whom we call Lord. This is the bedrock on which true peace is established. But in what way is Christian peace ‘spread to all the earth abroad’ in the midst of our conflicted world? Before reflecting[…]

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