Discipleship is For Misfits…

-Book Four -Chapter Sixteen -One of the early recollections I have of church sermons as a youth, was a message given by a pastor about the type of disciples that Jesus chose; instead of choosing men who were part of the popular crowd, Jesus literally chose young men at the bottom of Jewish society. There […]

True Discipleship is Immersed in the Culture

-Book Four -Chapter Nine -I’ve made a habit of regularly visiting Latin America throughout my adult life. In those travels I’ve learned a LOT about how different people are from one another across the globe. Just as Americans who live in the rural South are vastly different than Americans who live in Urban Chicago where […]

When Christian Children are the Disciples of Pagans..

-Book Four -Chapter Seven -Many years ago, as a young twenty-something about to have his first child, I spent a lot of time considering what God’s word had to say to parents about how to raise their children. No other text in holy writ influenced me more than the Shema Yisrael in the book of […]

The Necessity of Narrative…

-Chapter Seventeen -As the Industrial and Technological Revolutions moved modern humanity away from the narratives provided by religion, the 20th century saw a steep rise in a vast array of psychosomatic disorders, depression, and loneliness. We know that narratives help to bind communities together; narratives create community and a lack of a comprehensive historical narrative […]

The Spirit of Thanatos…

-Chapter Sixteen -In ancient Greek mythology, Thanatos the God of Death is an interesting character. Of all the Greek Gods, he is one of the more peculiar in that as his mythology grew, his actual nature slowly evolved and changed. Initially, Thanatos was nothing more than black death and all that accompanies the end of […]

Faith Versus Fiction…

-Chapter 13 -When I was younger I attended a public exorcism. It was a rather strange evening in which a well known exorcist invited a couple thousand people to a hotel conference room in order to ‘cast out demons’ in the name of Jesus. It was not difficult to notice that the audience comprised of […]

Snake Oil Science…

-Chapter Eleven –In the years I worked as a chemical addictions’ counselor, one of the first things that became quite apparent to me is that no person can give up drugs or excessive alcohol if they didn’t want to give them up. Quite often, the clinic I worked at was sent court-ordered clients who had […]

The Religion of the Not-Religion…

-Chapter Ten –The central tenant of the purveyors of the scientific method was that they were not using the tools of religion. Even well-known Christians who were advocates of fact-based, scientific philosophies, such as Francis Bacon in the 16th century, explained they were not using Christianity, religion, or faith to conduct their experiments, but rather, […]

The War That Never Was…

-Book Three -Chapter Nine –As the Enlightenment spread throughout Europe and the America’s throughout the 17th century and the new way of discovering ‘facts’ became normative, as every movement does it eventually began losing steam, and life throughout the Western World settled down to a normal ebb and flow. In countries like Great Britain and […]

Cart Before the Horse…

-Book Three -Chapter Eight –I was once sitting at coffee in between two men arguing about medicine. One of the men was from Asia and prescribed to Eastern medicine and the other was American and of course defended Western medicine. The American could not wrap his brain around the hesitations and trepidation’s the Eastern advocate […]