NURSERY THEOLOGY

For those privileged to be born in Christian homes, good theology begins in the nursery, where it is communicated--one suspects--most often in song. What better introduction to truth as a whole and in all its aspects than this: Jesus loves me. This I know, For the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong; They are weak but He is strong. There we have it--“Truth” for all, Jews and … [Read more...]

Don’t ask this columnist about critical thinking

A special gracEmail essay Don’t ask this columnist about critical thinking  A widely-syndicated opinion piece by Miami Herald columnist Leonard Pitts, Jr. published on March 16, 2007 provides opportunity for a useful exercise in critical thinking. Under the title "Don’t ask this general about morality," Mr. Pitts takes to task Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, … [Read more...]

‘LITTLE GRANNY’ GOES HOME

It was an eventful year, 1912. The Titanic sank, New Mexico and Arizona joined the Union, Juliette G. Low founded the Girl Scouts of America, Woodrow Wilson was elected President of the United States. And in Wartrace, Tennessee, Kate and Frank Taylor welcomed their firstborn -- a daughter they named Celia Baldwin Taylor. She grew up to marry Jamie Locke of Leiper's Fork, Tennessee, to whom she … [Read more...]

SHOW COUPLE TRUTH AND MERCY

A gracEmail subscriber writes: 'My daughter will soon be receiving her doctorate. I have been looking forward to this, feel proud of her and would like to attend and celebrate with her. However, she and her boyfriend recently started living together. That breaks my heart and I have repeatedly advised her to reconsider. I fear that attending her graduation will condone the situation and that her … [Read more...]

NO PARENTAL SHAME

A gracEmail subscriber writes: 'My daughter will soon be receiving her doctorate. I have been looking forward to this, feel proud of her and would like to attend and celebrate with her. However, she and her boyfriend recently started living together. That breaks my heart and I have repeatedly advised her to reconsider. I fear that attending her graduation will condone the situation and that her … [Read more...]

SINS AND SINNERS

All sin is sinful and all of us are sinners. Those truths are easily forgotten today, as many "righteous" people seem to limit "sin" to sexual wickedness, of which they are quite sure that God considers homosexual misbehavior to be the very worst sort. Seeking some biblical perspective, I looked up nine major "sin lists" found in the New Testament (Matt. 15:18-19; Rom. 1:28-31; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Gal. … [Read more...]

OLD TESTAMENT DIVORCE

A preacher asks concerning Deuteronomy 24:1, the text to which Jesus refers in his own teaching about divorce, "Does 'uncleanness' in this passage mean that the woman has been immoral?" * * * That has always been open to question, among ancient Jewish rabbis as well as among Christians today. Where English translations say "uncleanness" or "indecency" (NASB) in Deut. 24:1, the Greek Old … [Read more...]

MARRIED FIDELITY IS NOT ADULTERY

"I have heard it said," writes a gracEmail subscriber from the Southeast USA, "that anyone who divorces a spouse for an 'unscriptural' reason and marries someone else must leave their present mate and remarry the original spouse, or else remain unmarried. It is argued that Matthew 19:9 describes an ongoing action which continues simultaneously with any subsequent marriage following an … [Read more...]

FOR MARRIAGE, AGAINST DIVORCE

A subscriber writes concerning two single Christians, both previously married and divorced, who are considering marriage. The woman's first husband had numerous affairs over a period of years. The man's first wife withheld conjugal rights for more than 20 years of marriage. "Is there a scriptural reason," the inquirer asks, "against this couple marrying?" * * * It seems abundantly clear to me, … [Read more...]

DIVORCE: IDEALS & FORGIVENESS

A reader from Washington asks: "What can you say about New Testament teaching concerning divorce and remarriage?" * * * It is easy, when discussing this sensitive subject, to confuse two very distinct questions. One might inquire, "What is God's will concerning marriage and divorce?" Or one might ask, "May the person who has transgressed God's command and come short of his will, then be forgiven … [Read more...]