• Christian Living,  Church,  Culture,  Ethics

    Slavery Reparations and the Christian

    Slavery reparations are all the rage right now. This week there was a House hearing on reparations, and there were a variety of celebrity testimonies, including Danny Glover and Burgess Owens arguing for or against reparations. This conversation has really ignited over the last year. When the culture takes aim at a topic, the Christian needs to be equipped to think through the issues from a biblical worldview. On the issue of whether slavery reparations are to be implemented, I think there are a couple issues to consider. First, slavery reparations would be a logistical nightmare. Although the issue is often painted as blacks needing to receive reparations and whites needing to pay reparations, that is a gross oversimplification. If the actual issue is slavery, one needs to consider the numerous black slaveholders. Should their black descendants be required to pay reparations? According to one black brother, he can actually…

  • Culture,  Theology

    How Can Same Sex Relationships be Wrong?

    “How can same sex relationships be wrong if they don’t hurt anyone?” (Of course when I say same sex relationships I am referring to homosexual relationships, not same sex friendships). This is a common objection to the biblical view that same sex relationships are wrong. The argument is often stated, “If two adults want to engage in a consensual same sex relationship, if there is no harm done, why disallow them that freedom?” The implication of this kind of argumentation is that if something is not harmful, it is good (or at least allowable). However, this argument for same sex relationships should be challenged because of the following two reasons. (1) The issue of harm is distinct from the question of morality. Whether something is right or wrong does not depend on whether it is harmful to other people or not. Just from a logical standpoint we can see this.…

  • Culture,  Old Testament,  Theology

    God Can Use Evil People to Administer Justice

    We often imagine justice being administered by those who hold to God’s righteous standard. In the past, Western culture and society was tremendously influenced by Scripture, and so was influenced by a biblical standard of justice. However, now as the Western culture disintegrates a new kind of morality has arisen—a morality where everyone does what is right in their own eyes. In the world we face today, we need to remind ourselves of the comforting truth that God’s sovereign control is not prohibited from using evil men to administer justice. One of the clearest places this is revealed is in Habakkuk. The book starts with the prophet questioning God about the lack of justice; the destruction, violence, and wickedness that was present in the people of Judah (Hab 1:2-4). Habakkuk’s question is, “Why won’t you do something?” God’s answer was something that would astonish Habakkuk. God was going to use…

  • Christian Living,  Culture

    Why Everyone Should Discriminate

    “We never discriminate!” “Discrimination is evil!” Such cries are part of the culture today, yet I challenge the sanity of such claims. First of all, what exactly is discrimination? Meriam-Webster’s dictionary defines the verb “discriminate” as follows: As transitive verb: • to mark or perceive the distinguishing or peculiar features of • to distinguish, differentiate • to distinguish by discerning or exposing differences: to recognize or identify as separate and distinct As intransitive verb: • To make a distinction • To make a difference in treatment or favor on a basis other than individual merit Can we all agree on one obvious observation? None of these definitions are inherently negative. In fact, the core idea of discrimination comes from the Latin word discriminare, which simply means to divide or separate. In other words, discrimination is simply, in the words of Webster, “making a distinction.” Imagine the nonsensical idea of someone…

  • Culture,  New Testament,  Old Testament

    Why Does the Bible Allow Slavery?

    Slavery is recognized as one of the great evils of our history. To many, this provides reason for rejecting what the Bible teaches. For example, some balk at the belief that Christians can put their faith in a book which, not only does not condemn slavery, but actually regulates it! Further, today people argue against the Old Testament and the Apostle Paul’s view of homosexuality because both sources include regulation of slavery rather than its abolition. Why does the Bible allow slavery? At first glance this seems an irredeemable blemish to the goodness of the Bible’s message. This is a challenging issue because our society brings with it cultural baggage which makes accurate interpretation of biblical texts on slavery difficult. We all are familiar with the African-American slave trade, and this is the kind of slavery that we envision taking place in the Bible. As a proper foundation for understanding…

  • Culture,  Ethics

    Biblical Thoughts on the Transgender Issue

    Over the last few months I have been following the cultural push for transgender equality. One of the biggest arguments for those arguing for transgender rights is that these individuals have the right to declare what gender they really are on the inside. However, is gender a choice, or is it something inherent to each individual’s identity? The Bible is clear on the matter. God created them male and female (Gen 1:26-28). God is intimately involved with the creation process of each individual (Ps 139:13-16). Hence, each human being is endowed by God with their gender, and they ought to accept it as part of the Creator-creature relationship. According to the Bible then, if a child is struggling with their sexual identity, they should not undergo some kind of sexual reassignment surgery. Rather, they should be patient and be allowed to continue to develop. Interestingly, on June 12th, Paul McHugh…