Celebrating the political Jesus has never been harder

During and after studying politics in grad school, I often heard variations of the statement that, if we’re to live together, we need to avoid political topics and focus on the things that unite us rather than divide us. It’s a tempting proposition to be sure. Our political dysfunction has reached fever pitch, and our […]

Just a Game?

I am a New Yorker. Not by birth, but by adoption. My husband and I moved from Los Angeles to New York City in 1999 with big eyes and big dreams. I loved California, but ever since I was ten years old and saw the musical Annie on stage in Los Angeles, I dreamed about […]

March 2019 E-news from the Siburt Institute

Mission Evidences from the Field: What do Healthy Growing Churches Look Like? It’s no secret that many congregations are in decline. I can say more about that on another day. But what I have been asking for the past six months is, what do growing churches look like? More specifically, what are the characteristics of […]

The Christian and Politics

Jesus said, “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” (John 15:19) Can Christians avoid being political? One definition is “activities within an organization […]

Being Silent and Being Loved

“In the green of the grass, in the smell of the sea. in the clouds floating by, at the top of a tree. in the sound crickets make at the end of a day. You are loved. You are loved. You are loved, they all say.” – Nancy Tillman, childrens’ book author I have spent […]

The Power of Naming

You cannot change what you will not name. I do not know the origins of this quote, but I have full confidence in its truthfulness. The dysfunction of our individual lives and of our entire society becomes increasingly worse when we fail to acknowledge the pain that lies beneath the brokenness. No one is exempt […]

Why Does Saturday Night Live do Politics Better than the Church?

You’ll be hard-pressed to find bigger fans of Saturday Night Live than my wife and I. The way the show has recast itself and re-envisioned itself over the decades is enigmatic to say the least and, truth be told, nothing short of a media miracle. The number of major comedic stars who got their big […]

God Cares About How We Care About Politics

I am convinced that God cares about what goes on with politics…not always so much about the politics themselves but about how His people engage in the process. We cannot claim the political high ground while producing “acts of the flesh” (Gal 5:19-21) rather than the “fruit of the Spirit” (Gal 5:22-26). We cannot spew […]

Christian Americans or American Christians — who are we?

As our religious convictions become increasingly filtered through blue- or red-colored glasses, Christians in the United States seem to be more of a force for division than unity. The problem isn’t the disagreement. The letters of the New Testament reflect that the church has been rife with disagreement since the ascension of Jesus. Paul and […]

Who We Are Instead

Who are we, brothers and sisters?  Now, more than ever, the American Church needs to answer that question.  A cursory answer you might pose is, “We are the Church.”  You might say, “We are Christians.” The response might even be, “We’re God’s people.” While those are true, I’ll ask again.  Who are we? One need only look around the […]

Preaching and Politics: Give to God, Give to Caesar

Don’t talk about politics and religion. Just don’t! That’s the wise policy if you want to avoid conflict in the break room, not turn the family reunion into a family feud, and so forth. After all, both politics and religion can become so divisive that it seems best just to leave them alone. Well, I’m […]

The Christian and Politics

My name is Hector Hinojosa. I was born in South Texas in 1957 to a family of yellow dog Democrats. That means if there’s a Democrat on the ballot, we will vote Democrat even that Democrat an “old yellow dog.” Being born in October of 1957 I did not get to vote in the presidential […]

The Black Robe Regiment: The Pastor-Patriots of the Revolution

We need more Boanerges or sons of thunder in the pulpit. … If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it. Charles G. Finney (1792-1875) “The Decay […]

David Lipscomb and Civil Government

David Lipscomb and Civil Government[1]                David Lipscomb’s work, On Civil Government, challenges some of the basic assumptions many have concerning the relationship of the church and the state. This volume was written in the mid-nineteenth century, but its message resonates today in our current charged political environment. In the last decade, the work of […]

March’s Theme: The Christian and Politics

Yes, we are going there. People say it is best to not talk about two things: politics and religion. What if we talk about both at the same time? Our reluctance to create an environment to discuss these things freely has hindered us in many ways. Let’s prayerfully walk into March. Let’s be determined to […]