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Religious Articles Archive
Years: 2007 | 2006 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002-prior |
Year 2003
Reflecting on "The Passion of the Christ"
Mel Gibson's film "The Passion of the Christ" boldly asserts that the cross stands at the center of the Christian gospel. The claim is scandalous to Jews, folly to Greeks, and threatening to secularists. It accounts for some of the strong attacks against the film before its release and the tepid uncertainty from Hollywood that follows it.
Choosing Love & Making Life
Fallen men want life and its fruits because they are made in the image of Him who created life, but they want life and its fruits on their terms because they have rejected the ways He has said that life is to be found. [Feb. 2003]
Religious Freedom is for Everyone-Not just Minorities
Rabbi Daniel Lapin: I don't think that America's Jewish community does itself any long term good by denouncing every public expression of Christian faith as if it were a force-fed dose of castor oil. This anti-Christianism is not only unhealthy for all Americans; I think it is particularly destructive for Jews to be leading the extirpation of all signs of Christian fervor from the village square. [1/3/2004]
Seeking Mysteries
A visitor who does not know God or his kingdom should expect to encounter some mystery and a challenge to learn some things that he does not yet understand. He is, after all, a visitor in what should be a foreign land, the Kingdom of Heaven, unless the local church is just another expression of the surrounding earthly culture.
Monkeys and atheists
There are many intellectually honest atheists, and there are many intellectually dishonest believers in God. Nevertheless, I believe that any objective person would have to conclude that the belief that everything came about by itself and that randomness is the creator is infinitely less intellectually sound than the belief in a Creator/Designer.
Practical Atheism
One of the most common defenses for Democratic loyalties is to assert the moral equivalence of the two parties, to claim that their respective errors leave the Christian to vote for the one he thinks most Christian, or least unchristian. This tactic however is not grounded in truth or reality.
God and Governing
Why do they hate President Bush? In large part for his religious faith. Among the many faults charged against George W. Bush it is probably his conservative Christian faith that most troubles the people who dislike him--or most infuriates the people who hate him.
Peace To You Tonight, Tomorrow and Forever!
Christ offers Himself to us. At His Holy Nativity He enters into our world and becomes one of us. If we seek Him, and cling to Him, all our differences diminish in importance. What matters is that all loving Orthodox Christians work together and concentrate on the vital task of loving one another. We can only do that by staying close to our Lord Christ, Who offers Himself to us on this holy feast day commemorating His Holy Nativity, and indeed on every day of our lives.
The Persecution of Christians in America
The controversy over the Ten Commandments monument in Alabama is just the tip of the iceberg. For decades Christianity has been on the defensive in America, and it's gotten so bad now that many of our public institutions are actively anti-Christian.
Dennis Prager: How I found God at Columbia
Most people come to believe in God through what I call the front door of faith. Something leads them to believe in God. Since that day at Columbia, however, I regularly renew my faith through the back door -- I see the confusion and nihilism that godless ideas produce and my faith is restored. The consequences of secularism have been at least as powerful a force for faith in my life as religion.
The 'offensiveness' of Christianity
There is an intrinsic bias in our popular culture against Christianity, and it's getting worse. The only thing that isn't clear to me is whether the liberal secularists who deny it are oblivious to the discrimination or are being deceitful.
Gospel of Inclusion?
Episcopalians' inability to defend core doctrine suggests that mainline American churches are losing their theological moorings, and increasingly falling prey to the prevailing winds of secular culture.
The Godless Party
When it comes to religion, America is a far different place from its newsrooms. Ours is still a religious nation, even if it is, in the main, a mild "church-of-your choice" civic religion of the sort President Eisenhower had in mind when he remarked, "Our government makes no sense unless it is founded on a deeply felt religious faith—I don’t care what it is."
Christ in the Workplace
It's not easy being a Christian in the workplace. Secular ideology is so pervasive in the professional environment that we often have a difficult time fitting into the culture of the office.
Not So Quiet on the Eastern Front
Not all Americans were in concert about the wisdom or moral character of this past spring’s invasion of Iraq, but among our country’s many religious groups it is arguable that none was more deeply divided on the subject of the Iraqi war than the Orthodox Church.
Christian Europe: An Orthodox Perspective
"The continent of Christendom" is facing new realities and challenges. Values considered for centuries to be the bedrock of European existence are being questioned from many sides. Loss of faith, dehumanization, uncertainty and fear have radically shaken European self-confidence.
Communism versus God: Who Won?
How did "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion" morph into, "You can’t invoke God at public high school graduations"? Through judicial activism: Fifty years of judicial activism have come between our Constitution and us.
The Nightmares of Choice
What is the emotional impact of doing abortions on the people who do them? Those who do them have written and said enough to show that it is no ordinary medical procedure. Some suffer nightmares, while others suffer many of the other symptoms associated with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, once called "shell shock" and "battle fatigue." The practice of medicine, of healing, should not give you nightmares, should not leave you shell-shocked.
Standing Together, Standing Apart
We must not claim that Christianity is the property of Western civilization, but we do acknowledge that Western civilization, such as it is or was, is the product of Christianity and of Christians. Darkness has always loomed in the background, if not in the forefront of Western culture. The critical turning points in Western history were moments when darkness was defeated or dispatched, often just in the nick of time.
Episcopal Duties
Why are only the Roman Catholic bishops speaking out against public figures? Alas, we are not aware of a single authoritative word of episcopal reproach to the many politicians among the Eastern Orthodox in this country who openly and energetically support abortion.
The Austere Offices of Manhood
The call to be a father, and a father to the fatherless, is the great, too-infrequently-tapped resource of Christianity for reform, for the protection of the innocent, and for the spread of God’s kingdom. The world around us bleeds for the lack of an army of responsible Christian men.
So God changes God's mind, does he?
Is there a nicer precis of the modern mood, in which practitioners of a sexual style once foreclosed to Christians find themselves celebrated as authoritative Christian teachers?
Not Caesar's Icon
Being an icon of God and not being an icon of Caesar is difficult, for it is far too easy to reflect the new and shiny values and markings of the world and far more difficult to reflect the ancient light of Christ.
The Truth About Men & Church
If a father does not go to church, no matter how faithful his wife’s devotions, only one child in 50 will become a regular worshipper. If a father does go regularly, regardless of the practice of the mother, between two-thirds and three-quarters of their children will become churchgoers (regular and irregular).
The Physicians’ Crusade for the Unborn
Physicians’ concern for the unborn continued throughout the nineteenth century and well into the twentieth. Hundreds of physicians published articles, letters, and editorials in medical journals that defended the unborn from earliest conception and condemned the seekers and providers of unnecessary abortions.
"A Plea for Peace" Flawed by Moral Equivalency
On first glance "A Plea for Peace," a statement from the Orthodox Peace Fellowship critical towards the war in Iraq, possesses considerable moral weight because of the long list of Orthodox leaders who signed it. This first impression is misleading.
The Comforting Doctrine of Hell
What of those who see their sin for what it is, a rejection of God, and still embrace it? Can God force them to reject sin and accept his mercy, without making them different persons?
The Godless Party
When it comes to religion, America is a far different place from its newsrooms. Ours is still a religious nation, even if it is, in the main, a mild "church-of-your choice" civic religion of the sort President Eisenhower had in mind when he remarked, "Our government makes no sense unless it is founded on a deeply felt religious faith—I don’t care what it is."
Orthodox Senators Betray Moral Heritage
Recently the US Senate voted to ban partial birth abortions. Senators Paul Sarbannes (D-MD.) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME), both Orthodox Christians, voted against the ban. By privatizing religious faith, these senators assume a posture of moral neutrality but in fact betray the moral teachings of the Orthodox faith.
Cultural Wars and Orthodox Christianity
Orthodox values and Christian Tradition in general are threatened, more severely than ever, by the secularizing mentality of contemporary American society and Western culture in general.
The Church Must Confront the Cultural Battle
The tide has not only turned against the Judeo-Christian bedrock of our nation, but the corrosive salt-water waves of postmodern humanism threaten to swallow up that foundation like the mythical city of Atlantis. Long-held principles are evaporating and long-standing institutions are crumbling. Nothing seems able to stanch the assaults of wickedness.
Reverse religious intolerance
More and more we're living in an Orwellian world where the oppressors are distorting language to accuse the oppressed of the very things they are doing to them. Here we have people accusing a Christian of offensive and hostile behavior as an excuse to be offensive and intolerant to him. Don't talk to me about harassment.
The New Faithful: A New Great Awakening?
Moral relativism can't nourish the soul. Nor can the secular orthodoxies that spring from this impoverished soil engage the deeper questions that give life meaning. This first generation raised within our morally relative culture looks for more enduring meaning and many find it in religion.
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