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Posts Tagged ‘religion’

The only patriots worth their salt are the ones who love their country enough to see that in a nuclear age it is not going to survive unless the world survives. True patriots are no longer champions of Democracy, Communism, or anything like that but champions of the Human Race. It is not the Homeland that they feel called on to defend at any cost but the planet Earth as Home. –Frederick Buechner in Wishful Thinking

Facebook has proven what I’ve always known. If all of my friends were in the same room, it would get ugly. We’ve all experienced the wrath of trolls and other internet creatures which emerge during discussions of politics, religion and money. While I’ve grown up with conflicting worlds–rural and urban, republican and democrat, poor and rich, and various ethnic combinations–many around me have not had the same experiences. They are surprised that I could be friends with “those people”. So anytime I post something remotely controversial…

So why do I still do it? I’ve always valued the public square. Maybe it’s because I was shy growing up, and enjoy the opportunity to speak. Maybe it’s because I learn so much more when others have a chance to speak. Some will counter that I should keep my opinions to myself and just take personal action if it’s that important to me. However, many important actions require group cooperation which necessitates a larger discussion before we are able to act together. (more…)

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“The question of why evil exists is not a theological question, for it assumes that it is possible to go behind the existence forced upon us as sinners. If we could answer it then we would not be sinners. We could make something else responsible…The theological question does not arise about the origin of evil but about the real overcoming of evil on the Cross; it asks for the forgiveness of guilt, for the reconciliation of the fallen world.” ― Dietrich Bonhoeffer

I come across blog posts rather frequently about “The Problem of Evil”. Often, atheists will use the discussion as a “proof” against Christianity. Meanwhile, Christians will take their best shot at providing a rational solution to the question.

Actively living and writing in Hitler’s Germany, Bonhoeffer was certain that evil was not a good reason to doubt God’s existence. The evil present in that time demanded a response. Without God, what was left to condemn it.

It is important to move beyond the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” An alternate question might be, “How can a good and loving God expunge evil from the people and Creation He loves without destroying them?” Answers to these questions are not as easy and obvious as some atheists might like to believe, nor are they for anyone else.

For me, these issues were further put in focus after reading Evil and the Cross (IVP) by Henri Blocher many years ago. As a result, I developed a talk used many times that my students endearingly referred to as “The Evil Talk”. What most unsettled and interested students in their love-hate relationship with the discussion is that many dearly held apologetics are overturned before a more reasonable answer can be found. (more…)

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