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Category Archives: History

Mark Noll on Our Changing Understanding of the Bible in America

Yesterday, Mark Noll delivered a public address in conjunction with the Bible in American Life conference. Noll is a respected scholar of the history of Christianity, as well as the author of the influential Scandal of the Evangelical Mind. I thought I’d share just a few of his insights here. In his address, Noll presented […]

Filed under History, The Bible

First Liquid Poured on the Moon and the First Food Eaten There Were Communion Elements

July 20, 1969, US Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin (@TheRealBuzz) landed on the Moon (while astronaut Michael Collins continued to orbit the Moon in the Command Module). Today, included in the 45-year anniversary celebrations of the event is the commemoration of Aldrin taking communion on the lunar surface. Yasmine Hafiz, associate […]

Filed under History

Experience the Tabernacle: An Interview with Jeanne Whittaker

The Bible devotes 50 chapters to the tabernacle, the portable tent complex that God instructed Moses to build and transport when the Israelites wandered in the wilderness in their escape from slavery in Egypt. It was meant to reassure the 12 tribes of Israel of God’s presence. While the original tabernacle existed thousands of years […]

Filed under Bible, Bible Reference, History, Interviews, Old Testament

Origen vs. Celsus: Early Christianity Answers Its Critics

I recently had the privilege of leading a short discussion at my church about early Christianity. In particular, I talked about the period of time immediately following the New Testament, when early Christians found themselves contending for the faith in an intellectually diverse and often hostile environment. One of the highlights of that time period […]

Filed under Apologetics, History

Five Timeless Quotes by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Who’s the most quotable Christian writer you’ve encountered? Last year, I nominated C.S. Lewis and Charles Spurgeon as candidates and shared five memorable quotes from each as evidence. But since then, I’ve been forced to acknowledge another candidate: Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the famous World War 2 pastor and martyr. Bonhoeffers’ writing style doesn’t lend itself to […]

Filed under Books, Fun, History

The Book of Common Prayer Remains a Force: An Interview with Alan Jacobs

[Eleanor Roosevelt’s copy of the Book of Common Prayer (courtesy of] Since its first publication in 1549 during the reign of King Henry VIII, the language of the Book of Common Prayer has saturated English culture. It’s become a venerable work that continues to touch the lives of multitudes around the world. Daily readings […]

Filed under Bible, Books, Church, History, Interviews

What Is Heresy?

What makes someone a “heretic”? Have you ever used that word to describe a person or a belief, and if so, what did you mean by it? Justin Holcomb (who, you may recall, we interviewed earlier this month about the importance of creeds) thinks that Christians ought to be more careful and precise in the […]

Filed under History, Theology

Why Creeds are Still a Big Deal: An Interview with Justin Holcomb

Creeds are the church’s most important statements of faith over the centuries, but are they needed today? Are they only good for public worship services or can individuals benefit from them on a day-to-day level? Rev. Dr. Justin Holcomb (@JustinHolcomb) is an Episcopal priest and a professor of theology and Christian thought at Gordon-Conwell Theological […]

Filed under Books, Church, History, Interviews

The Long Reach of Christian Beliefs (The Apostles’ Creed and More)

Christianity did not begin when we were born. Nor did our generation invent Christian thought… Today’s Christianity is directly affected by what earlier Christians chose to do and to believe. —Justin Holcomb, Know the Creeds and Councils If you spoke with one of the earliest Christians, would you agree about the essentials of the Christian […]

Filed under Books, History, Jesus

American History’s Entwined Relationship with the Bible: An Interview with Angela Kamrath

Look at a dollar bill and you’ll read “In God We Trust.” Visit the US Supreme Court and you’ll see, on the South Wall Frieze, Moses holding the Ten Commandments. The US Capitol building includes the Congressional Prayer Room, “to provide a quiet place where individual Representatives and Senators may withdraw to seek Divine strength […]

Filed under Books, History, Interviews