Rowan Williams on Wall Street

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, delivered a talk on theology and economics at New York’s Trinity Church last week. The historic Wall Street church was the site of the Building an Ethical Economy: Theology and the Marketplace conference which promised to “bring together leading theologians and economists to talk about the relationship between economics and Christian belief and action.” Williams had this to say: “Inevitably at some point, you have to talk about what level of wealth generation is compatible with the finite setting in which we live.” The global economic crisis, he said, brought to light “unreal forms of wealth generation which simply produce naughts on the end of a balance sheet that correspond to nothing.” “Theology,” he said, “while it can’t solve specific economic problems, will be at the very least nagging at the vocabulary, nudging at the assumptions.” And that’s how his talk went — long on literary and theological metaphor (“money is a metaphor like other things”) but precious little on economics. Continue Reading...

The Audacity of the Savior State

The current issue of Touchstone magazine features an impressive cover essay by Douglas Farrow, Professor of Christian Thought at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. In “The Audacity of the State,” Farrow uses the biblical Ichabod motif to examine the crumbling pillars of the family and church, which when properly respected form critical foundations for a flourishing society. Continue Reading...

Robby George and the Reformation on Reason

Ryan T. Anderson, editor of the Witherspoon Institute’s Public Discourse, takes note of an in-depth NYT profile of Prof. Robby George (HT: MoJ). In the NYT profile, George is presented as the central figure in the formation of the ecumenical coalition behind the Manhattan Declaration, and adds a number of important contexts for George’s academic, intellectual, and political endeavors. Continue Reading...

What Would Jesus Drive? A Cadillac, of course!

There’s a new answer to the question, “What would Jesus drive?”, a contention that won’t sit well with the environmental activists who first raised the question. The inevitably revisionist logic of the prosperity gospel has to hold that “Jesus couldn’t have been poor because he received lucrative gifts — gold, frankincense and myrrh — at birth. Continue Reading...

John Calvin in Siouxland

As we enjoy the final days of 2009, notable for among other things the 500th anniversary of John Calvin’s birth, take the time to enjoy this video creation from James C. Continue Reading...

Byzantine Hymn for the Nativity of Christ

From the Holy Land, sung in Arabic. Merry Christmas to all PowerBlog readers and our blogging crew! St. Paul’s Letter to the Galatians 4:4-7 Brethren, when the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. Continue Reading...

The Incarnation and “the foolishness of God”

I love the song, “Mary, did you know?”… Reflect on the words… The Incarnation is at the heart of the Gospel– not just that Jesus came as the GodMan in bodily form, as the ultimate sin-bearer, as the Perfect High Priest offering Himself as the Perfect Sacrifice for our sins. Continue Reading...

Deacons, Secularism, and the Welfare State

A few weeks ago Hunter Baker posted some thoughts on secularism and poverty, in which he wrote of the common notion that since private charity, particularly church-based care, had failed to end poverty, it seems only prudent to let the government have its chance. Continue Reading...

Hell and Capitalism

Contrary to the belief of some, the two realities referred to in the title of this post are not identical. But the discussion around a recent Boston Globe article reminds me of the saying from Jerry Taylor, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, “Capitalism without the threat of bankruptcy is like Christianity without the threat of hell. Continue Reading...

Sacred Selling

I have been thinking a lot about the way we sell church-related goods and services. I have been thinking about that and about Jesus overturning the tables of the money changers and sacrificial animal sellers in the temple. Continue Reading...