Christian View: Society

Racism

Admittedly, Christians have not done a good job at speaking out against racism. Martin Luther King famously repeated, “the most segregated hour in America is eleven o’clock on Sunday morning.” More than half a century later, these words still ring true, with 90% of churches made up of at least 90% of one ethnic group. Because of this, to speak out against the racism we see in others and ignore the...

Community

Whatever your worldview, it’s likely you see community as integral to humanity. Humans are communal creatures—family, friends, teams, tribes, etc. Community is also central to the Christian story—to the point where identity as an individual is inseparable from your identity found in community. Community is central to our story The first book of the Bible, Genesis, spells out the Christian narrativ...

Environment

Environment Environmentally Friendly? To stand in the thick of an environmental debate, it would be easy to conclude that there are only two sides: Either the environment exists only for human purposes – to provide us with the supplies we need to eat, build, trade, and live OR… The environment is more important than human beings and needs to be saved above all else. Christianity has an entirely di...

Social Justice and Activism

A quick internet search of “social justice” frustrates. Some people are richer than others: it isn’t fair. Some people want to take away our money: it isn’t fair. Too many people can vote, or not enough people can vote. Either way, it isn’t fair. Often, the talk confuses. It usually isn’t a conversation, but yelling. It would be easy to ignore the noise. Bottom line: talking about social justice i...

Digital Technology

Are you reading this on a smartphone or tablet that you carry around with you every day? That you’re holding in your hand right now? In reality, that’s pretty amazing—given that just a few decades ago, this was the stuff of science fiction. Even when the first iPhone came out, its functionality was limited. But the number of smartphones and the number of apps have exploded, and now we ...

War and Pacifism

War and Pacifism Outside the United Nations building in New York, there is a famous statue of a man beating his sword—a weapon of war—into a plowshare, an instrument of peaceful farming. This statue captured the sentiment of many after the horrors of World War II, which left at least 50 million dead. After all that death, couldn’t our world live in peace? However, many drew a different lesso...

Government and Politics

Do faith and politics mix? We’ve heard the argument that faith is a private matter: faith is fine, but if it finds its way into politics, it threatens the freedom of those who don’t share the same beliefs. In the United States, the First Amendment to the Constitution states that the government shall not establish a religion. And while not contained in the Constitution or Declaration of Independenc...

Poverty

We can’t seem to make it go away. If you are reading this on a computer or tablet or smartphone—that you personally own—material poverty is not the defining force of your life. You might be part of the 71% of humanity that lives on less than $10 a day, but you are certainly not living in abject poverty; in most developing countries this would mean less than $2.50 a day—sadly the reality for ...

Consumerism

Is consumerism really that bad? We are all consumers. We need to consume to survive. If we weren’t consumers, our global economic systems might collapse and Hollywood-type apocalyptic scenarios would likely start to play out. From the beginning of time, exchanging goods to fulfill needs has been fundamental to any healthy economic system. Over the last several centuries, those systems have become ...

Fair Trade

Fair Enough? The beans are spread out to dry in the noon-day sun. There are thousands of them, glinting under the heat rays in a purplish-red hue. They have been planted and pruned, gleaned and cleaned. After they are processed in the heat, they will be sent off to be milled. And once they are hulled, polished, graded, sorted, and roasted, they are packaged for sale and shipped to their final dest...