Fourth of July Special

I understand that people across the nation are concerned, and it’s good to lighten the mood in abysmally dark times. So today, in celebration of the Fourth of July tomorrow, I want to highlight the good in America. For obvious reasons, the United States was never mentioned in the Bible, but the United States encompasses a lot of what Israel was intended to be. The nation of Israel was part of God’s covenant with Abraham, that He would make an innumerable nation through his servant, but the excuse presented to Pharaoh for the exodus of the Israelites was “that [God’s … Continue reading “Fourth of July Special”

On God’s Hiddenness

The existence of God is not obvious. We often feel that we ought to encounter God himself—or at least tangible, overt evidence—if he truly exists. Many ask why God does not make himself more clearly known. Could he not write a message in the sky, or speak as an answer to prayer, or come like a thunderclap to display his power? In the midst of great trial even a Christian often feels, “a door slammed in your face […] After that, silence” rather than a reassuring presence of God. [1] It is a question I sympathize deeply with. I do … Continue reading “On God’s Hiddenness”

A Manual for Catholics on How to Dialogue with Orthodox Christians

Orthodox convo

I thought I would write a fun article that, while it contains some pearls of truth, is largely meant to tease Catholics, Orthodox, and Protestant Christians. Enjoy! Many a Catholic has gone through their entire lives without knowing what the Orthodox Christian is. For some, the word “Orthodox” often should be followed with the category of “Jew!” For other Catholics, Orthodox Christians are that weird combination of far east mysticism and Christianity, complete with bearded priests in smoke filled rooms (straight from Woodstock I suspect). For still other Catholics, Orthodox Christians were just fun people to go on Crusades with … Continue reading “A Manual for Catholics on How to Dialogue with Orthodox Christians”

Church and State Part Two: Caesaropapism

This is the second installation in a series of articles in which I present my view of church history with a focus on the relationship between church and state. In my last article, I covered the early church. Today I cover Constantine and caesaropapism. In the next installation, I will cover conflicts between monarchs and popes of the middle ages. As soon as the church gained a foothold into the government through Constantine, its dynamic with the state became much more complicated. While a government could be opposed to the church, the church could still have an important and necessary … Continue reading “Church and State Part Two: Caesaropapism”

The Case for Space

There are a great many things to discuss this week, but the best thing I can talk about, somewhat like the event itself, is a brief distraction. I found the SpaceX launch to be both exhilarating and exciting. Today, then, I want to argue why humanity should pursue space travel, from a biblical perspective. An initial look at the Bible with regards to space will need clarification. Deuteronomy 4:19 warns the nation of Israel against being “lured away” by looking at the Sun and other stars. The Old Testament warns against those who place their haunches amongst the heavens, and … Continue reading “The Case for Space”

Free Will

In this post I will argue why the definition of Free Will as “the ability to consciously choose to do something” is best. I think man can be manipulated and at the same time be free–provided we understand the word manipulated in a certain sense. By manipulated I do not mean that man is free for the most part and then at certain times God chooses to intervene. This view would hold that man and God are equal metaphysically: an impossibility. What I mean by manipulated is God’s activity as first cause. God is the first cause of everything since … Continue reading “Free Will”

Church and State Part One: The Early Church

This is the first installation in a series of articles in which I present my view of church history with a focus on the relationship between church and state. Today I cover the history of the early church. In the next installation, I will cover Constantine and caesaropapism. Struggles between state and religion, papacy and monarchy, have long captured the attention of historians. Whether examining the Torah’s laws for separation between holy and unholy, Roman persecution of the early church, the Inquisition, or Roger Williams’ fight for separation of church and state, it becomes apparent that only a thin line … Continue reading “Church and State Part One: The Early Church”

Does the Truth Change? (Part II)

In the previous post I explain some of the definitions St. John Henry Newman gives to doctrine, authority, and private judgement. Now I will seek to explore how Newman uses these definitions to construct a view of theology that can be said to “develop” without changing what Christ taught. First, there exists the issue of when private judgement fails to attain truth. Since private judgement varies from person to person, there are different degrees to which the statements of private judgement can claim to represent truth. Laurence Richardson writes that although private judgement pertains to the individual’s mind, it is … Continue reading “Does the Truth Change? (Part II)”

Fear of A Virus

The coronavirus has given us a very grim reflection of humanity’s worst traits. It’s shown us how quickly we are led to believe anything and everything. It’s shown how easily our leaders fall for the allure of power. It’s shown how flippantly we dismiss our neighbors as dumb or dangerous. Most importantly, from my diagnosis, it’s shown how fervently we succumb to fear. Far from keeping distance, far from avoiding cities and crowded spaces, we are afraid to leave the confines of our houses for brief weekly neighborhood walks. The hopeful, ill-intentioned or not, have been demonized more than terrorists. … Continue reading “Fear of A Virus”

Film Review: Onward by Pixar

Onward: Ian and Barley

With everyone cooped up at home, viewership on streaming services has predictably surged. My Mom and I recently finished Season 3 of Fauda (I highly recommend the series!), but today I want to review a kid-friendly film. Onward, Pixar’s latest release, is available on Disney Plus. Onward is worth a watch, as are all of Pixar’s films (except for Cars 2 and Cars 3). Even so, Onward is a bit of a let down, given Pixar’s high standards. Onward has all the necessary ingredients for a good film. There’s an attractive setting: a modernized suburban fantasyland. The story, about two … Continue reading “Film Review: Onward by Pixar”