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Everything I knew about the Church of Christ, better known pejoratively among Baptists as Campbellites, is probably wrong. What I experienced recently at a spectacular event at Nashville’s Lipscomb University was contextually prophetic, musically energizing, mockingly delightful, profoundly Christian. Truly a rarity in Christian entertainment, the show was irreverent and reverent with first-rate performers and […] Read More

As is well known, in a debate over the payment of taxes, Jesus asserted that we are to “render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.”  George Weigel called this “a revolutionary text.” With them, Weigel writes, “Jesus gives Caesar his due.” Neither Jesus nor the early church […] Read More

Some of the more interesting discoveries a teacher gets to make come from listening to students who are discovering things for themselves. One of these occurred recently in a class on the prophetic literature of the Old Testament as we were looking at the “call” of the prophet, as illustrated by Amos, Hosea, Isaiah and […] Read More

While I love reading the biblical prophets, preaching from them is a difficult, daunting task. I imagine many of us who are engaged in regular preaching often avoid the prophetic texts when they appear in the lectionary because the other three lections often seem more favorable for sermonizing. Yet, the prophetic tradition is a powerful […] Read More

A sermon delivered byKathy Pickett, associate pastor, Holmeswood Baptist Church, Kansas City, Mo., on August 21, 2011, in the ordination service for Kate Hanch. Isaiah 52: 7-10 I asked Kate Hanch why she chose this prophetic text for her ordination sermon, “It makes me happy!  It is a joyful text, and it is not the […] Read More

It seems like it has been a long journey from Jim Crow to the Party of No, but one wonders if it has really been very far. There was a time when a good Baptist deacon would teach Sunday school the morning after wearing a white sheet on Saturday night to terrorize his neighbors with […] Read More

We have listened to voices claim what must occur to create a better future for our nation. The business sector has clamored for the protection of the wealthiest Americans from taxation because they are the job creators. Closet historians have declared with a Jeffersonian thunder that America is about individualism. It would be unfair to […] Read More

One of the sad facts about Christianity in the United States is that many Christians are ignorant of the political nature of Jesus’ message. Preferring to see Jesus in only spiritual terms, and his message as only about salvation and heaven, we often miss the significance of Jesus as a political figure. I don’t mean […] Read More

Judging politicians by their preachers is a great temptation to which many succumb, adding more poison to the public square in at least two ways. First, it fosters the false fear that dogmatic preachers have undue influence over politicians – when they really don’t. Even the worst politicians are not religiously robotic. They compromise doctrine […] Read More

The United States has spent well nigh a trillion dollars in a war against people in Iraq after having been misled – if not willfully deceived – into the war. What did your pastor say to your congregation about it? The United States spent almost a trillion dollars to bail out investment companies whose misguided […] Read More