Moral Formation In American Civilization

Sep 30th, 2023 | By

Anyone who is intellectually honest can only reach the conclusion that American civilization, morally and ethically, manifests a depravity and decadence that permeates almost everything. There is polarization, anger and bitterness. There is confusion, dysfunction and moral chaos. There is loneliness, isolation and seclusion fostered and enhanced by the social media phenomenon so pervasive within our civilization. Public education is adrift in terms of curriculum, the absence of discipline and the depressing results of the basic requirements of life—reading and math skills. Columnist David Brooks laments all of this in a recent essay declaring that American civilization now lacks a reliable vehicle for what he calls “moral formation.” In this Perspective, I want to quote extensively from this essay and then offer a conclusion sourced in Scripture.

1 Samuel 8:1-9:27

Sep 29th, 2023 | By

Israel asks for a King, Samuel warns them of the consequences and Saul is introduced as the king.

Evidence Of Cultural Decadence: The Case Against Cultural Accommodation

Sep 23rd, 2023 | By

One of my favorite columnists is Ross Douthat, who writes for the New York Times. Douthat is a devout Roman Catholic and has written extensively on his faith and the Church. I do not always agree with some of his theological conclusions, but I am usually challenged by his insights. Recently, he wrote on the theological and cultural divisions within his Church—between the “liberal Catholic” and the more conservative Catholic on certain cultural issues. The typical “liberal Catholic” is pushing for greater accommodation of the Church to the broader culture. Among other things, they argue, this is a necessary step for the Church to remain relevant in this postmodern world.

1 Samuel 4:1-6:21

Sep 22nd, 2023 | By

As the Philistines capture the Ark, God disciplines Israel and reveals Himself to the Philistines.

The National Debt And The Imminent Fiscal Crisis

Sep 16th, 2023 | By

As columnist George Will so eloquently puts it: “This nation is slouching into the most predictable fiscal crisis in its history.” On 1 August 2023, Fitch Ratings lowered the credit rating of the United States one notch to AA+ from a perfect AAA. The firm, citing a “deterioration in governance” along with America’s mounting debt load, suggested that “it could be a long time before that decision [i]s reversed.” This credit rating change is similar to the drop to AA+ in 2011 by S&P Global, which has kept its rating there. There is a profound lack of willingness to compromise and reasonably discuss the national debt on the part of both political parties.

1 Samuel 2:27-3:21

Sep 15th, 2023 | By

The LORD judges Eli and his sons and calls Samuel as judge, priest and prophet to Israel.

Rule Of Law And An Independent Judiciary

Sep 9th, 2023 | By

When our Founders wrote the Constitution in the summer of 1787, they structured this democratic-republic around a three-part federal government—an executive, a legislature and an independent judiciary. This separation of powers was to provide a built-in set of checks and balances to guarantee that no one individual or group of individuals would amass too much power. From the Marbury v. Madison opinion in 1803 by Chief Justice John Marshal, the judiciary has the authority of judicial review. It is the role of the judiciary to interpret the Constitution of the United States. To that end, the judiciary has the authority to review executive and legislative actions to determine whether those actions are constitutional or not.

1 Samuel 1:21-2:21

Sep 8th, 2023 | By

Hannah dedicates Samuel to the LORD and offers an extraordinary prayer to God, reflecting a depth of understanding about theology that is astounding and remarkable.

Israel And The West Bank: A Biblical And Historical Perspective

Sep 2nd, 2023 | By

The state of Israel captured the West Bank of the Jordan River from Jordan during the 1967 Six-Day War. Historically and biblically in terms of Israel’s history, this area is known as Judea and Samaria. It is part of the land God promised to Abraham by covenant (Genesis 12:1-7; 15:18, etc.). Since 1967, Israel has been slowly planting Jewish settlements on the West Bank, but this has accelerated and intensified under the current government of Benjamin Netanyahu. The expansion of these settlements runs counter to the so-called “two-state” solution, which refers to the creation of an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel.

1 Samuel 1:1-18

Sep 1st, 2023 | By

Hannah, Samuel’s mother, epitomizes how the ceremonial law was to work in ancient Israel.