Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Earth Day, a Humbug? From Resurrection to Recycling
Stephen Turley, The Imaginative Conservative

My student furls her brow; “What on earth does Easter have to do with saving the environment?”

Do Your Duty
Gene Edward Veith, Ligonier Ministries

We have vocations in the family, the workplace, the nation, and the church. That means that we also have duties in each of these estates. Most people still feel some sense of duty in these areas, however vaguely thought through, though the Bible ramps up these duties considerably and charges them with spiritual significance.

Abraham Kuyper Was a Heretic Too
Derek Rishmawy, Reformedish

Persons are not static realities. We have storied identities full of development, regression, and plot turns galore. That’s what we see on display is the story of Kuyper. For all intents and purposes, Kuyper was a heretic. He ended a stalwart defender of the faith.

What’s the Point of Common Grace?
Hugh Whelchel, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

For most of us, our jobs and everyday activities bring us in contact with non-believers. We work alongside them day after day. How do we think biblically about this situation?

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
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How Catholic Social Teaching Can Ruin Your Life
Adam A. J. DeVille , Catholic World Report

Real Christianity, when lived out fully, makes you look like a weirdo, a misfit, and a loser in the eyes of many.

Street Gangs, Poverty And The Left
David Masciotra, The Federalist

Street gangs transform impoverished inner cities into warzones.

Knowledge, religion and the hard work of faith
Cynthia M. Allen, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

As Thomas Aquinas said: “We can’t have full knowledge all at once. We must start by believing; then afterward we may be led on to master the evidence for ourselves.”

If KIPP is so bad, what does that say about poor minority parents?
Stuart Buck, The Buck Stops Here

Education blogger Jim Horn, who doesn’t let accuracy interfere with his eagerness to condemn charter schools, has yet another post decrying KIPP and similar schools for being eugenicist.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, April 21, 2014
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Religious Freedom and the American Settlement
Luis A. Silva, Public Discourse

Steven Smith’s new book implies that it is still possible—though difficult—to recover what made the U.S. a land of free and flourishing belief.

One Simple Step Toward Making Politics Less Horrifying
Andrew Quinn, The Federalist

Today our government statistical services are failing at some vital missions-and they have generally been falling away from the global forefront for at least a generation. In key fields we see not only stagnation, but even retrogression.

Choose Your Own Education
Todd Krainin, Reason

When it comes to education policy, Sen. Ted Cruz is adamantly pro-choice.

How a basic income in the U.S. could increase global poverty
Megan McArdle, PBS NewsHour

In reality, McArdle argues, the basic income couldn’t replace the existing social welfare system, as some of her fellow conservatives suggest; instead, she says it would end up doubling the federal budget.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, April 18, 2014
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The Joy of Orthodox Pascha
Wesley J. Smith, First Things

One spring, a few years before I converted to Eastern Orthodoxy, my wife and I vacationed in Greece. On the plane we became friendly with a happy elderly Greek-American gentleman who told us excitedly that he was on a pilgrimage to the Holy Mountain (the monastic polity of Mount Athos) for Pascha.

Easter and ethics: How the resurrection reshapes the Christian life
Phillip Bethancourt, ERLC

What is the relationship between Easter and ethics? How does the crucifixion shape the Christian life? How does the resurrection reorient our moral intuitions?

Ten Welfare-Reform Lessons
Robert Doar, National Review

Make no mistake about it: My fellow city workers and I were bureaucrats. But we were bureaucrats on a mission to bring the principles of the 1996 federal welfare-reform legislation to New York City in a way that would help poor New Yorkers improve their station in life.

The State Of Our Religious Liberty Is Confusing
Peter Lawler, The Federalist

Liberty from government is not just for unencumbered.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, April 17, 2014
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3 Things You Should Know About the Paycheck Fairness Act
Romina Boccia, The Foundry

The Senate is set to vote on the so-called Paycheck Fairness Act today. Here are three things you should know about the bill.

Are Christians in America Persecuted?
Kevin DeYoung, The Gospel Coalition

The short answer is “Yes, all the time.” The not as short answer is: “Yes, Christians in America are persecuted, but not as frequently, consistently, or with nearly the intensity that Christians are persecuted in many other parts of the world.”

Christians Must Reject Putin’s Christianity
Ryan Mauro, Juicy Ecumenism

Russian President Vladimir Putin was a KGB officer when the service was promoting an anti-Western, Marxist version of Christianity. He is now, with some success, pitching himself as the man who can save Christianity from the moral vices of the West and Islamic oppression.

Philosophy and Morality in Public Discourse
Robert T. Miller, Public Discourse

If we want to move public discourse in the right direction, we should rely on the many assumptions we share with most of our contemporaries.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
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It’s All About Religion
Metropolitan Jonah, Juicy Ecumenism

In the West, we are blinded by our secularist world view. In particular, we are unable to understand other societies that reject our own way of understanding.

Where Did Your Tax Money Go?
Amy Payne, The Foundry

Major entitlements (Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security) gobbled up 49 percent, while more federal benefits took another 20 percent. These additional “income security” benefits include federal employee retirement and disability, unemployment benefits, and welfare programs such as food and housing assistance.

Rugged Individuals: Revival Of American Calvinism
Stéphane Bussard, Worldcrunch

Calvin is discovering a new popularity in America. No, not the character from the Bill Watterson comic Calvin and Hobbes, but John Calvin, the 16th-century French Protestant Reformer.

Forgiving the unforgivable in Rwanda
Tim Townsend, CNN

At first, the prisoners thought he had been sent by the government – a spy in a clerical collar – to investigate their crimes. Even when they were satisfied that Gahigi wasn’t a spy, they were skeptical of his motives. Why would this man come to their prison to preach when he knew what they had done?

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
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Lesson For April 15: Why Government Can’t Replace Charity
Howard Husock, Forbes

Maybe it’s because of the impending tax filing deadline, but we are seeing a sudden spate of muscular defenses of a government safety net against the alleged conservative view that private charity could assist those in need—and replace government

Christian Magnanimity
Bryan Wandel, Humane Pursuits

Christian magnanimity is an overflow of grace to bear with the immaturities and shortcomings of people around us – for their benefit.

Catholic Schools Pressed to Give Up Morality
Anne Hendershott, Crisis Magazine

After decades of well-documented dissent on many Catholic college campuses over Church teachings on abortion, contraception, and same sex marriage, a new front in the Catholic culture wars has opened on Catholic K-12 campuses as increasing numbers of gay and lesbian teachers and administrators at these schools are lobbying for the right to marry their same sex partners—and keep their jobs.

Playgrounds, Religion, and Regulation
Brian Baugus, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

A long list of man-made rules restricts creativity and the ability to pursue opportunities in a society. It is man, seeking to steal God’s role – whether it be as priest or as king— that lays all the extra rules on top of God’s law and stifles flourishing.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, April 14, 2014
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Trade, Not Aid, Could Protect 100,000 Children in Africa
Ryan Olson, The Foundry

One of these good policies would be free trade. According to a new report from the European Commission, nearly 30 countries on the continent still maintain tariffs on mosquito nets of up to 20 percent.

Diversity and Dishonesty
Ross Douthat, New York Times

This refusal, this self-deception, means that we have far too many powerful communities (corporate, academic, journalistic) that are simultaneously dogmatic and dishonest about it.

Mozilla and the Prophet Isaiah
Peter Wehner, Commentary

At the core of what’s driving this effort by some supporters of gay marriage is the belief that holding traditional views on marriage is akin to being an anti-Semite and a racist.

Stewardship Doesn’t Occur in a Vacuum
Anne Bradley, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

God calls us into community with one another to serve each other. In our modern world, we do not have to worry about how to build fires. We purchase matches or lighters or better yet, central heat. We get up every day and use products, and we are completely ignorant of their design, production, and origin.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, April 11, 2014
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Hillary Clinton praises bravery of Pussy Riot band members who desecrated Russian Orthodox cathedral
Kirsten Andersen, LifeSiteNews

Former Secretary of State and likely Democratic presidential contender Hillary Clinton posed for pictures Friday with members of Russian punk band Pussy Riot, just months after they were released from prison after storming the sanctuary of a Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour to mock Christianity.

The Shame of Brandeis
John Podhoretz, Commentary

If you have not yet heard, Brandeis University has rescinded its offer of an honorary degree to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the Somali-born activist.

Christians form human shield around church in ‘China’s Jerusalem’ after demolition threat
Tom Phillips, The Telegraph

Christians have flocked to defend a church in eastern China after Communist Party officials claimed it was an “illegal construction” and announced plans to demolish it.

9 Things You Should Know About The Rwandan Genocide
Joe Carter, The Gospel Coalition

This week marks the twentieth anniversary of the beginning of the campaign of genocide in Rwanda. Here are nine things you should know about one of the most horrific seasons of slaughter in modern times.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, April 10, 2014
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Love Is Our King: De-Institutionalizing Enmity
Greg Forster, Canon & Culture

Nothing else we do in the public square will work if we don’t do everything from a position of love that challenges the deeply embedded assumption that we hate our culture.

Losing our Religion: On ‘Retaining’ Young People in the Orthodox Church
Seraphim Danckaert, Orthodoxy & Heterodoxy

The fundamental problem is far scarier and far harder to “fix”: the Gospel of Jesus Christ is neither taught nor followed by the vast majority of Christian parents in America. Period. The data are unavoidable.

Religious Freedom Wins in Mississippi
Sarah Torre, The Foundry

In a victory for religious freedom, last week Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed into law the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Talk is cheap: US, Obama must act now to save lives, protect religious freedom
Johnnie Moore, FoxNews.com

As priests are abducted in Crimea, churches burn in Sudan, and American pastors waste away in North Korean prisons, how long will it take this administration to name a new ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom?