American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion

American exceptionalism is the notion that America is special among the nations. This notion has deep theological roots, tracing at least as a far back as John Withrop’s famous “A Model of Christian Charity” sermon in 1630 during which he cast a vision for his fellow Massachusetts Bay colonists to embrace their role in establishing a “city upon a hill” – an image taken directly from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:14).

Man standing alone

Three Cheers for Celibacy

Sometimes in the life of the church we need to reclaim a forgotten or dormant teaching. My sense is that now is such a time and that the teaching we need to dust off and put into practice is celibacy. Celibacy is not a very popular idea. We Protestants see the Catholic Church overdoing it […]


Should Christians Carry Guns?

Recently, I considered buying a handgun. The consideration came after a series of violent crimes grabbed the headlines in my area. The crime spree led to a number of conversations with neighbors, friends and family members. Most of my conversation partners argued that owning and carrying a handgun provides a very real protection against threats […]