Professor Larycia Hawkins’ Suspension, President Obama, and the Lost Jesus of Christmas

Professor Larycia Hawkins’ Suspension, President Obama, and the Lost Jesus of Christmas

Solidarity is what she opened her discussion with.  Shortly after the December 2nd mass shooting in San Bernardino by a Muslim husband and wife, Wheaton College Professor, Larycia Hawkins, set out to demonstrate solidarity with her Muslim neighbors by wearing a hijab.  She cleared the actions with Wheaton, which is a major Christian liberal arts university, and all appeared to be fine.  While my idea of solidarity promotion wouldn’t include the wearing of a hijab any more than suggesting that a Muslim cleric wear a Catholic Priest’s collar, I understand the desire to do something to foster a spirit of peace.  I agree that stereo typing all Muslims as terrorist is something that we must fight.  Days later though Professor Hawkins was suspended by the university.  As some raced to condemn the institution and point to the public wearing of the Islamic female head covering as their reason, the real issue was much deeper and I completely agree with Wheaton’s decision. (more…)

Expanding the Love of Christ 40 Years Later.

On the 40th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, I’m wondering where Norma McCorvey is today.  Who is Norma McCorvey?  Well I’m glad you asked.  Norma is the woman who took the legal pseudonym of Jane Roe in the landmark case which made abortion legal for any reason in the United States back in 1973.  I wonder where Norma is and what she is doing today because she is not the same woman that she was then. In fact, Norma holds a very different position today.  In 1995 the world changed for Norma when some simple Christ followers and a leader from Operation Rescue did something radical; they loved her.  It took some time, but eventually Norma fell under the weight of God’s love and surrendered her life to Christ and now experiences freedom and purpose.  While I don’t know exactly where Norma is today, I know what her agenda is.  Norma is given to spreading the truth about what a choice for abortion really means and the healing that can be found in Christ.  Check out the quick clip on Norma’s story below and then a few ways that we can expand the love of Christ in relation to this modern abortion challenge.  How will you bring “life” and love into your world today on this issue? (more…)

Pondering Politics and Piety. Part II

Tonight the President of the United States is slated to give his annual State of The Union Address.  I’m not sure which one will be more fun to watch; his speech or the bantering on Face Book that will follow.  When it comes to dialogue on politics, it’s interesting to see all the Christ following friends I have who sit on opposite sides of the political aisle.  They claim allegiance to Christ, but are polls apart in politics.  But that will be part of our discussion next week when we wind this subject down and look at some of the personal reasons why I don’t swim in this pool much anymore.  It is also worth noting that Jesus actually spoke very little about politics even though Conservatives and Liberals claim Him as their guy at times.  In fact, we see virtually nothing of Jesus giving a commentary on the Roman government of his day.  That’s because the mission of Christ is beyond that of any temporal regime.  Yet we noted in Part I. that as citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven we’re not to cloister ourselves away from society, but rather to influence it.  So what does the Bible say about our relationship to the Kingdoms of this world?   Here are some pointers we should consider and while my list below is not exhaustive, it’s something to start with.  (more…)

Ground Zero Mosque and the Power of the Gospel.

There’s been a lot of debate recently over the building of an Islamic Mosque and community center just two blocks away from ground Zero in New York.  The issue took on more steam this past weekend as President Obama endorsed the group’s constitutional right to construct the building.  But then on Saturday, the President was reported as saying that while he upholds that “Muslims have that right, that doesn’t mean he believes it is the right thing for them to do.”  There sure are a number of ways to look at this.  I understand and have felt the same knee jerk reaction of many who have pointed out that the men who flew those planes into the Twin Towers in New York were led by a strict inner interpretation of the Qur’an (Koran).  So the initial thought of a group of Muslims meeting yards away from where such a tragic event happened can cause one to wince.  But when the dust clears and the heart beat slows down, I believe the group in question ought to be allowed to carry on with their plans.  But my main reason for such a position may not be easy to see at first.  Here’s what I’m thinking. (more…)