Mennonites and empire

Sep 26, 2018 by

Every Mennonite in the small town of Goessel, Kan., knows the date 1874. It is emblazoned on the “Turkey Red Wheat Palace,” erected on the centennial of Mennonites’ migration to the Great Plains from...

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Is a God who loves enough?

Jun 19, 2017 by

“I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed, I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them from the Egyptians...

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The paradox of progressive political theology

May 4, 2017 by

I’d like to try to point out, as a progressive Christian, something that has been bothering me about progressive Christian political theology — a paradox, tension and inconsistency that keeps popping...

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The cults of Caesar and Christ

May 3, 2017 by

The original name for what would eventually became known as Christianity was “the Way.” You won’t find “Christianity” in the Bible, but you will find “the Way” seven times in the book of Acts. If...

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No Tomahawk missiles in the kingdom of God

Apr 12, 2017 by

This post is a sermon (audio version here) given April 9, 2017 at Washington City Church of the Brethren. Our gospel reading this morning is about Jesus’ triumphal entrance into Jerusalem, just days before...

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Showalter: Political groupthink

Jan 16, 2017 by

Christians around the globe followed the U.S. election with as much interest as did citizens of the United States. Election Day found me in an international meeting in Germany. I went to bed long before the...

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Vive la Révolution!

Jan 3, 2017 by

Pagan astrologers read it in the stars — a new king of the Jews had been born. And so the magi came from the Orient bearing their gifts and accidentally got tangled up with the current king of the Jews — a...

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The book of Revelation on living in Empire

Dec 22, 2016 by

The book of Revelation does not have a positive reputation these days. For many Christians it is seen as hopelessly complicated and obscure. In my opinion, it is indeed the case that understanding Revelation...

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Andres: Bugs, politics, church

Nov 7, 2016 by

As the political climate degraded this fall, I found a bit of relief in the CBS comedy-thriller BrainDead, a satire set in a Washington that’s been invaded by extraterrestrial insects feeding on the brains...

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Right or Left — it’s still empire

Oct 13, 2016 by

The tragic decisions of American Christianity to align itself with a political party has now landed in a pool of manure with a plop. You may be thinking of the Christian Right, and you’d be right. You may be...

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Taking a stand by sitting

Sep 26, 2016 by

Certain stripes of patriots recoiled in horror on Aug. 26 when San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat during the national anthem to protest oppression of people of color. The controversial action...

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A simple way to world peace? Recognize America as ‘beast’

Sep 22, 2016 by

I offer what follows as a thought experiment, an attempt to flesh out a recent late night rumination. I finished reading a fine book by Douglas Fry, Beyond War: The Human Potential for Peace. Fry, who is an...

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Bible: Boundary-shattering generosity

Aug 15, 2016 by

The key to understanding Paul’s wrestling with the “what about Israel?” question in the Book of Romans is to recognize that he concludes with a strong affirmation of God’s saving intentions. In their...

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Could empire be a good thing?

Apr 14, 2016 by

For me, and most people I know, the word “empire” has a negative connotation. As well it should. The economic and military might of human empires has been one of the most destructive forces in history....

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Why is US Christian president so violent?

Jan 14, 2016 by

For his final State of the Union address, President Obama delivered a characteristically eloquent and passionate speech. He issued a heartfelt call for unity and cooperation in a country whose political...

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The politics of the Bible

Jun 8, 2015 by

The authors of this book are friends of mine. I have long admired their commitment to the Christian task of peacemaking and vigorous activism for social justice. In this volume they invite us “to read the...

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Opinion: Our real ‘sin problem’

Mar 16, 2015 by , and

When people in the church talk about sin, they often add a highly theological meaning: Our sins are an offense that separates us from God. This relational rupture is said to be the crucial reason we need a...

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Do Christian pacifists have a solution for stopping ISIS?

Mar 3, 2015 by

A couple of folks I really respect — Kate Gould of Friends Committee on National Legislation (a.k.a., the Quaker Lobby), and Jim Wallis of Sojourners — were recently on The O’Reilly Factor. I normally...

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