White fragility, white guilt, and the ring of Gyges

I think these books were meant to be read together. They are coming from very different perspectives—one a white progressive and the other a black conservative—but they are both attempting to make sense of white psychology in post-Civil Rights America. Even the book covers look similar, with the black and white appropriately inverted. Let me […]

Continue reading

‘Splainshaming: when “centering other voices” becomes a tool to silence dissent

Straightsplainshaming: rebuking, ridiculing, or dismissing a straight person for speaking on issues of sexuality, just because they are straight. Whitesplainshaming: rebuking, ridiculing, or dismissing a white person for speaking on issues of race, just because they are white. Mansplainshaming: rebuking, ridiculing, or dismissing a man for speaking on issues of gender, just because he is […]

Continue reading

Review: Beyond Racial Gridlock by George Yancey

“Gridlock” is a good word to describe the state of evangelical discussions on race today. The past couple years especially have witnessed a meteoric rise in the use (and misuse) of terms like “critical race theory” and “systemic racism.” If evangelicals are going to break through the current ideological impasse, then they need a reliable […]

Continue reading

Review: The Cross and the Lynching Tree by James Cone

This summer I’ve been trying to read as much as I can on the topic of racial justice, covering a range of perspectives—both secular and Christian, and both progressive and conservative. One title that I just finished is The Cross and the Lynching Tree by James H. Cone, who is considered to be the father […]

Continue reading

Some random thoughts on Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility

Having recently finished reading Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility, I thought it might be helpful to offer a few thoughts on it. I don’t intend to give a full review here. If you want to read a more substantial review, then I would recommend Coleman Hughes or John McWhorter. What I want to do here is […]

Continue reading

Review: Them Before Us by Katy Faust and Stacy Manning

Them Before Us: Why We Need a Global Children’s Rights Movement, by Katy Faust and Stacy Manning. Post Hill Press, 2021. 235 pages. I first heard about this book from a recommendation by John Stonestreet on the Colson Center’s Breakpoint Podcast. When I learned that Robert George (see my reviews here and here) wrote the […]

Continue reading

Four Christian Responses to Gay Marriage

This blog post is probably at least twenty years too late, if not much more so. Christians in America lost the gay marriage debate long before the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges decision. When the best response we can give to why the government shouldn’t legally recognize same-sex marriage is “because the Bible says it’s […]

Continue reading

Discussing abortion, Scholastic-style

In the spirit of Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologica, what follows is an attempt to tackle the topic of abortion according to a medieval-scholastic disputation. The topic is divided into four key questions (philosophical, biblical, circumstantial, and legal) that follow the format of Aquinas’s Summa, first setting forth the objections, then stating the opposing traditional view […]

Continue reading

How prepared are you to answer pro-choice objections against the pro-life case?

I recently finished reading The Case for Life by Scott Klusendorf (Crossway, 2009), which presents a compelling case for the personhood of human beings from the moment of fertilization. It also made me realize just how underequipped I was to respond to so many common pro-choice objections. What I’ve done here is gather the objections […]

Continue reading

What was Adam’s reward? A summary/commentary of Francis Turretin

One of the ongoing intramural Reformed debates centers on what would have happened to Adam if he hadn’t fallen into sin. Would he have continued in an earthly paradise? Or would he have been elevated to a higher, heavenly stage? Would his obedience have counted as “merit”? Does that make Eden a kind of temporary […]

Continue reading

Legislating Morality? A Review of Making Men Moral by Robert P. George

The idea of “legislating morality” is pretty unpopular these days. It grates against a widely shared assumption that people have a right to do whatever they want, as long as they don’t harm anyone else. The idea may also raise alarms about the danger of government overreach, perhaps even evoking images of a dystopian, totalitarian […]

Continue reading

What Is Marriage? A Summary of a Secular Defense of Man and Woman

Sometimes the most obvious things in life are the hardest to define. For example, how does one define beauty? Or manhood? Or marriage? Traditionally, such features of human existence were taken for granted as objective and self-evident, requiring no defense. But things have changed. The obvious is no longer obvious. It’s not quite right to […]

Continue reading

Does nature need addition? Bavinck against the donum superadditum

One of the central points of disagreement among the various Christian traditions is the question of the relationship of grace and nature. Should we say that grace opposes nature? Affirms nature? Perfects nature? Flanks nature? The answer that Dutch theologian Herman Bavinck famously gives is that grace restores nature: it gives back to us what […]

Continue reading

Thornwell’s Inaugural Address of the Confederate Presbyterian Church

Note: In 1861, the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America was deeply divided over the issue of slavery, as well as the broader matter of the church’s role in addressing social and political controversies. It was a question of jurisdiction as much as one of morality. In May, the PCUSA General Assembly had […]

Continue reading