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Platt Wasn’t Enough for My Church

(Andy Schmitz is the Lead Pastor of Redeeming Grace Chapel in Kankakee, Illinois.  He also blogs at andyschmitz.tumblr.com) I pastor a fantastic church. My congregants are passionate about the gospel of Jesus Christ, robust biblical preaching, and family-inclusive discipleship. But there’s also something a bit unique about my church.  Before I became their lead pastor in August…

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Should Christians Gamble?

You’ve probably experienced this at the gas station before.  You walk in, and you notice a man to the side of the counter with a coin and some scratch-offs.  It’s late in the evening, and you’re just popping in to grab a coke, so you don’t take much notice.  You go to check out, and…

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‘The Art of Biblical Narrative’ by Robert Alter

Some books you read straight through from cover to cover in one sitting.  Some books you struggle through over the course of several months, eventually giving up long before the end.  Some books require that you consume them in small chewable amounts. The Art of Biblical Narrative by Robert Alter is of the last variety. …

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The Scientific Method as God

After the Virginia v. Memphis game became a blowout last night, I flipped over to catch some of the newest installment of Cosmos: Spacetime Odyssey with Neil deGrasse Tyson.  The show is one part astronomy, one part history of scientists, and one part imaginative CGI.  Under Tyson’s supervision, each episode focuses on certain principles of astrophysics.  He…

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“Breathe In, Breathe Out”: Lecrae on The Word

If you were to search the song title “Breathe In, Breathe Out” on Rapgenius, you would find two very different entries.  The first was put out by Kanye West on College Dropout (2004), and it’s rhymes are concerned with…well, let the man speak for himself: “now I’m rappin bout money, h*#s, and rims again.” However,…

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Must a Christian’s Art Be “Christian”?

Do Christians have to paint pictures of crosses, shepherds, and slain lambs?  Is a band selling out when it chooses to write less “Christian” lyrics on their newest album?  Does every movie produced by Christians have to have an evangelistic/apologetic bent? Last week, Alex Medina wrote an article for The Gospel Coalition in which he…

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Tyson’s Cosmos: “We Are Made of Star-stuff”

Sunday night the self-proclaimed “bravest networks” Fox and Nat Geo premiered Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey hosted by Neil Degrasse Tyson.  The show is a reboot of astro-physicist Carl Sagan’s television series Cosmos: A Personal Voyage.  Throughout Sunday night’s program, Sagan played scientific forebear, mentor, and muse to Tyson’s impassioned narration.  In the final minutes of Sunday’s episode he…