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Should We Pray for the Defeat of ISIS, or Their Conversion?

A pastor friend told me last week that he had church members enraged with him when he suggested from the pulpit that we ought to pray for the salvation of Islamic State terrorists. The people in his church told him that he ought to be calling for justice against them, given their brutal murder of Christians, not for mercy. I thought about my friend a few days ago when these

Announcing My New Book

This August we release my new book, Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel (B&H). This book is a vision for Christian social engagement in an era in which Christianity is increasingly strange. I think we should own the strangeness, because it’s the freakishness of the gospel that changes things. In the book, I argue that the church is, if we ever were, a moral majority no more. We

Abortion and the Gospel

As today marks the forty-second anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, most Christians recognize, and rightly so, the loss of millions of unborn human lives. What we often forget is the second casualty of an abortion culture: the consciences of countless men and women. Too often, pastors and church leaders assume that, when talking about abortion, their invisible debating partner is the “pro-choice” television commentator or politician.

The Supreme Court and Same-Sex Marriage: Why This Matters for the Church

The Supreme Court announced today that they are taking cases on whether same-sex marriage is a constitutional right. Effectively, this means that the highest court in the land will decide, this year, whether marriage, as defined for thousands of years, will exist in our country any longer. Here’s what we should keep in mind. First of all, this is not something we should shrug off. Marriage isn’t merely a matter

The best books I read this year

Here’s my annual end-of-the-year roundup of the best books I read this year. Let me start with my caveats. These aren’t all 2014 books, though most of them are; they’re just books I happened to read this year. These are the books that happened to stir my thinking this year. They’re in no particular order. How (Not) to Be Secular: Reading Charles Taylor by James K.A. Smith (Eerdmans) When I