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Columns

Are All Biblical Stories Appropriate for Children?

Ellen G. White (EGW) did not like fiction. Her aversion to the genre is why she counselled “total abstinence [the] only safety” (Ministry of Healing, p 446). For much of the church’s history, EGW’s statements about fiction have been the official guide to what church members should and should not read. In the following quotation, she compares fiction to warfare and employs military imagery in her call to root it out:

Toward A Latin-American Adventist Theology Part 4: The Virtue of Laziness

In last month’s column, I tried to address, in broad terms, the third topic of our theological enterprise built from a Latin-American perspective: the understanding of human “space”. Western contemporary societies have created an innovative and functional category of space understood as “aseptic space,” where humans are destined to just travel through it, leaving no traces of their passage and creating instead, in and with it, value, efficiency and profit.

Why We Will Aways Have Segregated Conferences

It’s February. And in the United States, that means it’s Black History Month. It’s time for college campuses to ask the school’s gospel choir to perform for chapel. It’s the time of year when non-Black pastors call on their Black colleagues to pay an annual visit to their pulpits. Or, if they have no one on whom to call, it’s time to preach on unity and diversity and the reasons we should tear down racial divides.

On Remaining Silent

Unless you mercifully chose to unplug for the last week or so, you are well familiar with Donald Trump’s racist, xenophobic, White supremacist comments in the week before Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I am not here to debate the obvious.

Forgotten Homework: The 2020 Study in Hermeneutics

A convincing case could be made that the last time the global Adventist Church was truly “at study” was during the multi-year Theology of Ordination Study Committee (TOSC) effort that preceded the 2015 San Antonio General Conference Session. For one thing, the subject was important and impactful: it concerned how our church viewed the limits, if any, of women who feel called to gospel ministry.

Toward a Latin-American Adventist Theology Part 3: In Praise of Feasting

In last month’s column, I tried to address, in broad terms, the second topic of any theological enterprise: the anthropological question. Which kind of human being does our theology, practice, and mission really imply? And I considered a too-frequently overlooked fact: that the true understanding of what a human being represents is not only given by church doctrinal statements.

Of Greens and the Gospel

Every culture around the world has some particular way to ring in the New Year.

A New (Old) Resolve

I am not usually one for New Year’s Resolutions. To be honest, I have trouble sticking with anything when I am artificially manufacturing dedication to a new pursuit. As such resolutions of this type do not normally appeal to me. However, as I outlined in this space last month, I am struggling with aspects of my spiritual family as we come to the close of a new year and so I am willing to try something new in an effort to start 2018 off on the right foot.

The False Security of Certainty

“If you can’t support all our beliefs, why don’t you do the honorable thing and leave?” This sentiment, or some variation of it, is often made by some of our conservative church members when doctrinal disagreements occur. Besides being conversation stoppers, such statements do not model a welcoming church. If anything, they may mask the speaker’s apprehension about confronting uncomfortable topics, or betray an incoherent understanding of how our beliefs developed over time. 

Toward a Latin-American Adventist Theology Part 2: The Praise of Disorder

In last month’s column, I began trying to rearticulate Latin-American Adventism’s particular theological perspective. This led me to address, in broad terms, the first topic of any theological enterprise—the question of God himself. Which kind of God does our theology, practice, and mission really imply? And I remembered a too-frequently overlooked fact.

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