The Bible Tells Me So – Review

TheBibleTellsMeSoNot too long ago, I received a review copy of Peter Enns’ newest release, The Bible Tells Me So: Why Defending Scripture Has Made Us Unable to Read It. Thanks to HaperCollins for the book!

As with most books, the subtitle easily identifies the thesis of this work. Enns takes issue with a strongly conservative, evangelical approach towards defending Scripture, or perhaps even more, his challenge goes out to all who embrace the word inerrancy as an apt adjective describing the nature of Scripture.

I actually think that, to understand Enns’ theological views and perspectives, one needs to know his story. It is a tough one, one that stirs empathy in me. What is that story? Continue reading

Victoria Osteen and the Rest of Us

the-american-dreamI don’t spend much time offering my thoughts and reflections on the American dream-centered church, which some identify as the preachers of the “prosperity gospel”. Their message is basically focused on God wanting you to be healthy, happy and have lots of money. Well, there is the actual factor that God wants us to be whole, fully restored – and that will be done when all things are summed up in Jesus at the final consummation of all things. But there is a difference between that authentic storyline and the prosperity mirage.

One of the most recent blunders to send shockwaves around the social media world is Victoria Osteen’s video clip where she states: “I want to encourage every one of us to realize when we obey God, we’re not doing it for God. I mean, that’s one way to look at it…we’re doing it for ourself. Because God takes pleasure when we’re happy. That’s the thing that gives him the greatest joy this morning…”

You can see the clip here, including someone adding in a little Bill Cosby response clip at the end. But it was weird watching the clip. I could only grimace with embarrassment for her.

However, I’d like to take this opportunity by having us all reflect on just how spiritually anthropocentric, or human-centered, we really are in America. Not just those 25,000+ who sit in a Osteen-led service in Lakewood week by week. But the many of us who have truly had the wool pulled over our eyes in this regard, so much so that we don’t really see the undergirding foundation for what it is. Continue reading

PT Podcast 13: Issues the Church Faces Today – Same-Sex Relationships, Part 2

podcastWith today’s episode on the Prodigal Thought Podcast, we finished our short series on issues that the church faces today. We continued with part 2 on the topic of same-sex relationships and marriage.

Listen to or download the podcast episode below. Continue reading

Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus

slow-church-bookAs I shared before on here, a couple of months ago, I received a review copy of a new release from IVP. The book is Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus, co-authored by Christopher Smith and John Pattison.

I can truly say that this is one of the best books I’ve read in my 17+ years as a Christian, for it captures a lot of what I see the church called to in the present-day.

What is that call? Let’s explore through the lens of Slow Church. Continue reading