Waking Up: Racism, Privilege, and the Celebration of Ignorance

According to a 2016 Barna research study, only 56% of white evangelicals believe that people of color are put at a social disadvantage as a result of their race. While white evangelicals are the least likely demographic to believe racism is a problem in modern society, they are simultaneously the most likely demographic to believe the…

Dispatches From Purity Culture or: We’re Really Bad at Talking About Sex

The guest speaker stands behind the podium. A clear pitcher of water sits on a stool at his side. Our youth group listens with rapt attention. The guest speaker is talking about sex. He invites three boys to the front and tells them to spit into the water pitcher. Like, really spit. To make it…

At the End of the World: Leaving Behind the American Apocalypse

A long time ago, I used to believe God hated the world. I wouldn't have quite put it in those terms, but the God I heard about was God who was merely biding his time before "rapturing" all the "true Christians" and pouring out his wrath and judgment upon the Earth. For those who don't…

A Better Way to Read the Old Testament

The Old Testament is a formidable beast. Maybe you're discouraged by the mind-numbing genealogies, dietary restrictions, temple blueprints, and obscure prophecies. Or, maybe you're turned off by the graphic violence and apparent endorsement of slavery and oppression against women. Or, you're tripped up because no one in the Old Testament seems concerned about the afterlife.…

More Thoughts on Sex, Vulnerability, and Spirituality After Two Years of Marriage

We tend to fight when we travel. Which is unfortunate, because we really like to travel. I don't know if it's the accumulated stresses of hurtling through the sky in an aluminum tube at 28,000 feet, navigating the wonders of baggage claim, driving in an unfamiliar city, or simply finding a place where my gluten and…

Unveiled: Women, Misogyny, the Bible and Church

The Talmud - a vast collection of ancient Jewish laws and traditions - said it's better to "burn the Torah [the first five books of the Bible] than it was to teach it to a woman." Saint Clement, considered to be the first Apostolic father of the Church, said, "Every woman ought to be overcome with…

How (Not) To Read the Bible

In April 2018, fashion magazine GQ posted an article titled "21 Books You Don't Have to Read" and listed the Bible in their number 12 spot. Obviously, "the editors of GQ" are not the gatekeepers of literary excellence (Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian, J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, and J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in…