In the time of King David, the tribe of Issachar produced shrewd warriors “who understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chron 12:32). In a similar way, we need to become wise people whose faith interacts with the world.
To that end, on Fridays I’ve been sharing articles/resources I have found helpful recently in thinking about broader cultural and societal issues (be sure to see the disclaimer at the bottom). May these give you greater insight, so that you may continue the tradition of Issachar. Past emails are archived at http://glenandpaula.com/wordpress/category/links
- From the provocative-but-not-fully-explained department: Marissa Johnson, Part of a New, Disruptive Generation of Activists (Nina Shapiro, Seattle Times): turns out that Marissa Johnson (the Black Lives Matter activist famous for disrupting a Bernie Sanders speech) attends an evangelical church and studied theology in college. Fascinating profile, although it leaves me with many questions.
- From the friends-in-high-places department: The Late, Great Stephen Colbert (Joel Lovell, GQ): Colbert has deep faith, and it really comes out in this interview. It’s long, so if you just want the faith bit search for the phrase “He lifted his arms as if to take in the office” and start reading there.
- From the spiritual insight department:
- Faithfulness in College Is “Life-Wide” (Stephen Lutz, Gospel Coalition): what good does it profit a person to get a 4.0 and lose their soul? This one comes recommended by an alumnus.
- Keep Your Enthusiasm In Check (George Wood, personal blog): very short but helpful. The author is the leader of the Assemblies of God, the group which sponsors Chi Alpha (and which I am ordained by).
- From the people-of-this-world-are-shrewd department: Effective Altruism: Where Charity and Rationality Meet (Tyler Cowen, NY Times): there is nothing overtly Christian about this piece, but the subject should be of great interest to Christians. We are called to give to spread the gospel and help the poor — and the Church can do better at both.
- From the politics-and-the-pulpit department: Ten Things To Remember As the Presidential Campaign Season Gets Into Full Swing (Kevin DeYoung, personal blog): DeYoung is a well-known pastor and author. Points 6, 7, and 8 are especially good.
- From the unexpected bedfellows department: Scalia Gets It Pretty Much Right (Stanley Fish, Huffington Post): I share this mostly because famed postmodern (or anti-foundationalist) theorist Stanley Fish is one of the most unlikely defenders of the famed originalist Justice Scalia I can imagine. The world is an odd place. Be sure to read the follow-up Respond To The Column That Was Actually Written.
Chi Alpha is not a partisan organization. To paraphrase another minister: we are not about the donkey’s agenda and we are not about the elephant’s agenda — we are about the Lamb’s agenda. Having said that, I read widely (in part because I believe we should aspire to pass the ideological Turing test and in part because I do not believe I can fairly say “I agree” or “I disagree” until I can say “I understand”) and may at times share articles that have a strong partisan bias simply because I find the article stimulating. The upshot: you should not assume I agree with everything an author says in an article I mention, much less things the author has said in other articles.