— Wednesday, December 11th, 2013 —
Sometimes I learn a lot from conversations I was never intended to hear. This happened once as I was stopping by my local community bookstore. It’s a small, quiet store, so it was impossible not to eavesdrop as I heard a young man tell his friend how much he hated Christmas. And, you know what, the more he talked, the more I understood his point.
This man wasn’t talking about the hustle and bustle of the holidays, or about the stresses of family meals or all the things people tend to complain about. What he hated was the music. Keep Reading…
— Friday, December 6th, 2013 —
“Memory is hunger,” Ernest Hemingway once said, and I think he’s right. In every era, we battle the pull of nostalgia. We tend to overlook the grace and glory of the present, and ignore the brutality and banality of the past. It’s easy to imagine that we’d all be better off if we could just get back to the perceived “good ole days” of our our pasts.
This week on “The Cross and the Jukebox” we’ll examine this tendency as we think through the Rascal Flatts’ song “Mayberry,” and ask why it is that people tend to long for a perceived golden era. As we do, we’ll consider the way the gospel shows us that we’re made for nostalgia, but nostalgia of a different kind—not for an idealized past, but instead for a future, for a kingdom, for life eternal in a world made right.
— Wednesday, December 4th, 2013 —
Andy Crouch, one of Christianity’s most compelling visionaries on culture, joined Russell D. Moore to talk about his book, Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power.
This book plowed through my heart, leaving idol shards everywhere in its path. It will cause you to rethink your assumptions and perhaps to reset your priorities.
— Tuesday, November 26th, 2013 —
Listen as Russell Moore shares his thoughts on the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the Hobby Lobby Case, regarding the HHS Mandate.
— Tuesday, November 26th, 2013 —
We tend to idealize holidays, but human depravity doesn’t go into hibernation between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. One thing that will hit most Christians, sooner or later, are tensions within extended families at holiday time. Some of you will be visiting family members who are contemptuous of the Christian faith and downright hostile to the whole thing.
Others are empty nest couples who now have sons- or daughters-in-law to get adjusted to, maybe even grandchildren who are being reared, well, not exactly the way the grandparents would do it. Still others are young couples who are figuring out how to keep from offending family members who are watching the calendar, to see which side of the family gets more time on the ledger. And others are new parents, trying to figure out how to parent their child when it’s Mammonpalooza at Aunt Judie’s house this year.
And, of course, there’s just always the kind of thing that happens when sinful people come into contact with one another. Somebody asks “When is the baby due?” to an unpregnant woman or somebody blasts your favorite political figure or…well, you know.
Here are a few quick thoughts on what followers of Jesus ought to remember, especially if you’ve got a difficult extended family situation.
— Friday, November 22nd, 2013 —
We live in an age where, increasingly, being someone’s friend is little more than exchanging information on a computer screen, or entails little more than the casual nod of a head when passing in the hall. When Jesus calls us “friends” (John 15:15), though, surely he means something more than what we often do.
This week on “The Cross and the Jukebox,” we’ll consider the song that upholds the meaningfulness of genuine, time-tested friendship, “You Can’t Make Old Friends” by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton. Join us, then, as we listen to this song, and as we consider how friendship is both a gift from God and a reminder for those of us in Christ that it points ahead to the age to come—where will be reunited with loved ones and united together in friendship and life for eternity.
— Monday, November 18th, 2013 —
The most difficult math problem in the universe, it turns out, is 70 x 7. Perhaps the hardest thing to do in the Christian life is to forgive someone who has hurt you, often badly. But Jesus says the alternative to forgiving one’s enemies is hell.
One of the reasons this is hard for us is because we too often assume forgiving a trespasser means allowing an injustice to stand. This attitude betrays a defective eschatology. At our Lord’s arrest (Matt. 26:47-54), Jesus told Peter to put his sword back into his sheath not because Jesus didn’t believe in punishing evildoers (think Armageddon). Jesus told Peter he could have an armada of angelic warriors at his side (and one day he will). But judgment was not yet, and Peter wasn’t judge. Keep Reading…
— Tuesday, November 5th, 2013 —
Denny Burk, associate professor of Biblical Studies at Boyce College, joins Russell D. Moore, president of ERLC, to talk about life, his new book What is the Meaning of Sex? and pleasing God.
Listen to their conversation here.
— Monday, November 4th, 2013 —
I still remember the first time I heard my now wife’s name, “Maria Hanna,” mentioned in conversation.
I had no idea how she would live up to her name. Keep Reading…
— Wednesday, October 30th, 2013 —
The words “evangelical” and “fundamentalist” have very little meaning. For some, a “fundamentalist” is anyone who believes in miracles. For others, it necessitates a King James only Bible or a pre-trib Rapture or even a certain sort of public posture. At an American Baptist Churches General Assembly, I’d be considered a hardcore fundamentalist. At a KJV-only independent Baptist Bible camp, I probably wouldn’t be counted. Keep Reading…