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Category Archives: Culture

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For more insights on how to combat the sin of gossip, read Erik Raymond’s post, “How to Shut Down Gossip.” He describes a three-step process on how to deal with this nasty sin. Check out the article for more detail.

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Church, Culture

 

Words have power

CSI: Cyber tackled the subject of cyber bullying last week in “URL, Interrupted” (S1, E7). The tag at the end was one of the characters leaving a video explaining that words have power. It reminded me of Proverbs 18:21, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.”

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2015 in Culture, Scripture, TV

 

I don’t get it

I must admit I am puzzled by current events. With 1,100+ people killed in an earthquake in Nepal, with California suffering a horrific drought, with rising concerns about the violence of ISIS, I don’t understand all the attention being given to Bruce Jenner. I just don’t get it. It hardly seems newsworthy.

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2015 in Culture, News stories

 

Should you go see “50 Shades of Grey”?

What’s the harm in reading the book 50 Shades of Grey and its sequels? Is it ok to see the movie? Is it really that big a deal?

For those who have read the books (I haven’t) … for those who plan to see the movie (I don’t, though it’s hard to avoid seeing the trailer) … you might want to read Tim Challies  and Helen Thorne’s blog post, 7 Lessons from 50 Shades of Grey. It will help you to better understand the impact on your life and our current culture.

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2015 in Culture, Tim Challies

 

Truth is how I define it

In his book, The Rise of the Nones: Understanding and Reaching the Religiously Unaffiliated, author James Emery White describes the belief system of those who don’t identify with any particular religion. In pages 57-63, he explains that their system includes three primary concepts—truthiness, wikiality, and mistakers.

  • Truthiness: the assertion that we are not only to discern truth for ourselves from the facts at hand, but also to create truth for ourselves despite the facts at hand
  • Wikiality: reality as determined by majority vote, such as when astronomers voted Pluto off their list of planets
  • Mistakers: to avoid calling ourselves sinners, we’ve become mistakers; to turn everything we do into a virtue where lust becomes “sensuality,” and anger is just “being honest with your emotions”

I found it interesting that this week’s panels in the comic Non Sequitur, the character, Danae, practices truthiness and wikiality. If someone corrects her, then that person is “preachy.” Once again, it demonstrates how comic strips reflect values and culture in a humorous manner.

truth is preachy 1 truth is preachy 2 truth is preachy 3 truth is preachy 4 truth is preachy 5 truth is preachy 6

 
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Posted by on January 31, 2015 in Books, Culture

 

Can you have religion without God?

Can you have a God-neutral faith? Can you have religion without God? Can you have the benefits of church and yet have a hesitant or non-existent faith?

Author T. M. Luhrman, a professor of anthropology at Stanford University, answers all of these questions with “Yes” in her article, “Religion without God.”

She concludes the article with these thoughts,

Religion is fundamentally a practice that helps people to look at the world as it is and yet to experience it — to some extent, in some way — as it should be. Much of what people actually do in church — finding fellowship, celebrating birth and marriage, remembering those we have lost, affirming the values we cherish — can be accomplished with a sense of God as metaphor, as story, or even without any mention of God at all.

Yet religion without God may be more poignant. Atheists trust in human relations, not supernatural ones, and humans are not so good at delivering the world as it should be. Perhaps that is why we are moved by Christmas carols, which conjure up the world as it can be and not the world we know.

May the spirit of Christmas be with you, however you understand what that means.

Ms. Luhrman’s conclusions reminded me of what the apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 regarding what will take place in the last days.

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be … having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.” (2 Timothy 3:1, 2, 5)

People try to find meaning in religion and rituals. Yet they completely miss the point that salvation, forgiveness, purpose, significance are only possible through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2014 in Church, Culture, News stories

 

Redeeming the holidays

Blogger Ben Connelly has written an insightful post entitled, “The Most Wonderful Time(s) of the Year.” He points out that in the book of Leviticus, God created holidays and “commanded His people to pause several times each year, simply to feast and celebrate.” He gives several examples of how Christ followers can use holidays such as Halloween, Christmas, and events such as birthdays and funerals to share Jesus with others. “Some of the best chances for mission involve inviting our mission field into our special occasions, and joining theirs.”

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2014 in Culture, Holidays, Quotes

 
 
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