There is no hell

“You’re going to hell!” The words dripped with a violence, barely contained. “Repent of your wickedness,” a voice called again from the middle of a mob holding placards. I didn’t appreciate these words being directed at my wife and me.

The disgrace of (anti-)Catholicism

This topic seems to be a matter of picking through the rubbish in order to survive. Who cares about Protestant protest today? Anti-Catholicism, like anti-Protestantism, represents natural and culturally legitimate attitudes that can be judged by their motivation, spirit and content—aspects that are apparently obscure but, when examined, become very transparent.

I am not a sinner

I grew up in a small town called Utsunomiya, three hours away from Tokyo. When I was a child, I was certain that there was a God and that He loved me. Then I grew up and began to wonder, “If there is a good God, why is there so much suffering in the world? Why do innocent children die? Why is the...

Fighting over the West: Orthodoxy, Protestant Reformation, and Catholicism

At the beginning of the 15th century, the threat of the Ottoman Empire to Eastern Europe was a painful certainty. The last Byzantines, aware of the ensuing disaster, called on Western aid, seeking political union with the Roman Catholic Church.

Living Biblically?

Many Christians say they take the Bible literally. They regularly spend time reading this Book they believe to be inspired by God and seek to understand how to apply it to their lives.

Why the Church?

I’m sure you’ve heard the statement: “I’m all about Jesus, but I’m not interested in church.” I’ve heard this many times and have even found myself saying it during certain periods of my life.

“The Harrowing of Hell” asks: Who was Jesus?

There is perhaps no historical figure who is more frequently the topic of debates than the figure of Jesus Christ. Prophet or Conman? Divine or Human? Martyr or Madman?

The imperatives of absence

Contrary to one's initial impression, vigilance is not the main theme of Jesus' parables of "absence and expectation." Absence is central to these stories, because it is absence which enriches them, rather than impoverishing them. Absence is not a shortage, a gap, or a sign of non-existence—it is a catalyst.

Good reasons to read the whole Bible

As intimidating as the Bible may sometimes be, especially because of its size and its sometimes difficult passages, many who have read it from cover to cover say that it has changed their lives for the better—the spiritual resources the whole Bible can provide are not found elsewhere.

The Good Place: great questions, medium answers

In the opening scene of The Good Place, celestial being Michael (Ted Danson) explains that most world religions and philosophies get their respective understandings of the afterlife only about five per cent right.

Love in action: Corrie and Betsie ten Boom

Many times we don’t have the patience to wait for an answer to our prayers, and other times we don’t even know when we've received it. For the ten Boom family, the answer to some prayers came 100 years later.

Beyond the fish and the fishing line

"Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings… And overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice." (Nelson Mandela)[1]

Steps towards a transforming prayer life

Whenever we acknowledge that our prayers have become a boring exercise rather than a real conversation with a real person, it’s time to explore creative, tried and tested methods to rebuild a meaningful, enthusiastic and transforming prayer life.

People get ready

The song, “People Get Ready” was inspired by Martin Luther King Jr’s march on Washington and his “I have a dream” speech. In writing it the following year (1964), Curtis Mayfield not only captured the spirit of the march but created a song that caught the mood of the times and injected hope: “There’s a train a-comin’… . You don’t need no ticket,...
divorce

Does divorce make us happier than continuing in an unhappy marriage?

At the age of 27, for the first time in my life, I worried that time was passing too fast. For the next few years, the speed with which most of my friends were getting married was the next source of concern.