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The Reality of Satan and the Spiritual Realm

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Image by Lawrence OP via Flickr A theme that underlies Jesus’ entire ministry is the apocalyptic assumption that creation has been seized by a cosmic force and that God is now battling this force to rescue it. Jesus understood himself to be the one in whom this battle was to…

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Trusting God for the Wrong Things

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Image by vagawi via Flickr Chloe was a smart, personable, and devoted Christian student from South America whom I had the pleasure of teaching in several theology classes. In one meeting, Chloe confessed that, despite the confident appearance that she projected, she actually lived with a sense of guilt and…

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Why? The Question That Cannot Be Answered

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Image by BuzzFarmers via Flickr Yesterday Greg sent out the following flurry of tweets: To provide some background to these tweets, the following illustration will prove helpful: They mystery of evil and an eight-second interval Let’s assume that there is an eight-second interval between two cars. Now let’s try to…

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Why We Can’t Know Why Bad Things Happen

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Image by The Bartender 007 via Flickr Science has demonstrated that the slightest variation in a sufficiently complex process at one point may cause remarkable variations in that process at another point. It’s called chaos theory. The flap of a butterfly wing in one part of the globe can be,…

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Is Suffering Part of God’s Secret Plan?

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Image by val.pearl via Flickr In the Christian tradition since Augustine, the most common explanation for the apparent arbitrariness of life and God’s interaction with humanity has been God’s mysterious will—his “secret plan,” as Calvin says. Whether or not a child is born healthy or a wife is killed by…

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Sermon Clip: Twisted Scripture 1 Timothy 2:12

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1 Timothy 2:12 has been used over the years to keep women from teaching or preaching theology and being in positions of leadership within a church. When looked at within its historical and cultural context, however, we find Paul’s restriction on women was due to specific cultural problems that no…

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What To Do with the Bible’s Talk of Satan

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Recently, Roger Olson raised the question on his blog about why Satan is ignored in modern theology. He observed how Greg’s theology takes an “obvious, ‘up front,’ blatant belief in a very personal, very real, very active Satan who has great power in the world.” Because we often have so…

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Free Will: What about “natural” evil? Was Hurricane Sandy a Free Agent?

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What about natural evil? How does free will help to make sense of this? Greg reflects on the origins of sickness, natural disaster, animal suffering and so on. Hope you’re enjoying the series so far. There’s more to come!…

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Reflecting on Henry and the Heart of God

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http://youtu.be/b8gdLzuUuWo Several years ago Jessica and Ian had their theology revolutionized by coming in contact with the vision of God and the warfare worldview that ReKnew ministries stands for. Tragically, this last September this wonderful couple learned that their precious 4-year-old son Henry had a massive brain tumor and that…

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Grieving with the God who Pulled the Trigger?

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Lawrence Krauss recently wrote a thought-provoking, soul-searching essay for CNN Opinion entitled, “Why must a nation grieve with God?” Krauss was disturbed by a comment made by President Obama at a memorial service for the victims of the tragedy at Newtown CT. Commenting on Jesus’ statement to “Let the little…

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Finger-Pointing and the Impulse to Judge

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To no one’s surprise, yet to the sadness of many of us, several Christian spokespeople, including James Dobson, Mike Huckabee and Bryan Fischer, are blaming the shootings in Newtown, Conn, on abortion and gay marriage. This is sadly reminiscent of Jerry Falwell’s hurtful response to 9/11 when he divined that…

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When Free Will Meets Unfathomable Evil

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In the face of tragedy Christians unfortunately tend to recite clichés that attempt to reassure people that, however terrible things seem, everything is unfolding according to God’s mysterious plan. We hear that “God has his reasons”; “God’s ways are not our ways”; “God is still on his throne”; “God doesn’t…

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Would God Kill a Baby To Teach Parents a Lesson?

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Question: We have a group of guys that are going through your book “Is God to Blame” and a question came up that I would be curious how you would look at it. In the beginning of the book you ask the question “do you really think that God kills…

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If God shouldn’t get blamed when free agents do evil, why should he be thanked when they do good?

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Scripture tells us that every good gift comes from God the Father who “does not change like shifting shadows” (Ja 1:17). I interpret this to mean that God is always good and that he’s always working for good. In all circumstances, Paul said, “God is working for the good” (Rom….

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Why the 35W Bridge Collapsed – blog post 8/09/2007

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As all of you know, I’m sure, a little over a week ago the 35W bridge in Minneapolis collapsed. This is the most traveled bridge in Minnesota. It was a tragedy, though the fact that only 13 people died and/or are presumed dead is really amazing, especially given that this…

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Why did God create me to be a pedophile?

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Question: Since the first time I experienced a sex drive it’s been directed towards little children. I’ve never acted on this, for I know it’s wrong. But it torments me. Why would God created me with pedophile cravings? Answer: I’m so sorry for your condition and greatly respect the fact…

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Response to the September 11th attacks

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Was God Punishing Us? Since the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11th, many people have asked the question, “Why did God allow this to happen?” In response, some Christian leaders have suggested that God was punishing our country for reaching an all-time low in…

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Did God use Satan to test Job?

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Question: In Job 1:21 and 2:10, Job seems to accept “adversity” from God while continuing to trust him. Job blames his troubles on God (i.e. “He shattered me” [16:12], “He breaks me down on every side” [19:10], “For he performs what is appointed for me” [23:14]). In Chapters 1 and…

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