But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

Mere Orthodoxy - Apologetic Report

What does the Nashville Statement mean? And to whom should we look to help us understand? Conservative evangelicals have been gripped by such questions since the CBMW released the statement two weeks ago. Yet while its advocates and defenders have touted its importance and its benefits, I fear the...

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Sunday, 10 September 2017 20:00

The Christian Journalist in the Era of Fake News

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From Jake: This is a great day for Mere Orthodoxy: We have our first long-form commissioned essay paid for by our generous patrons via our Patreon page. We’re kicking off our long-form series with an excellent piece from Gracy Olmstead of The Federalist, who I am delighted to finally...

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Monday, 04 September 2017 22:16

Mere Fidelity: Orthodoxy and Sexual Ethics

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And…we’re back.

After a long summer break, we have returned. We skip all the niceties and how are yous and plunge in to recent discussions about the relationship between ‘orthodoxy’ and sexual ethics. The Nashville Statement makes an appearance, of course, as well.

If you...

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As the nation’s schools continue to move down the path paved for them in theObergefell decision, many Christian parents are pulling their children out of the public schools. Though the exact reasons for doing this vary from person to person, it typically comes back to concerns about schools...

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Wednesday, 30 August 2017 20:00

Book Review: How to Think by Alan Jacobs

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I.

A few months ago I made the mistake of getting into an argument on Facebook. Though my interlocutor knew that I’m a conservative, the point that I was making was not one (presumably) he had heard many other conservatives make. Exasperated with our conversation, my friend finally got to what...

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The ongoing dispute over the shape and meaning of “evangelicalism’s” understanding of sexual ethics took a sharper, more institutionally focused form yesterday. The CBMW convened what they are calling a “Coalition for Biblical Sexuality,” and released a series of...

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I’m pleased to publish this guest essay from Dr. Mark Randall James.

Brian Zahnd’s new book,Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God,has invited comparison with one of the greatest of early heretics, Marcion. In along and measured review, Derek Rishmawy makes the case that Zahnd’s...

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Tuesday, 15 August 2017 20:00

Social Conservatism vs Tribal Nationalism

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I’m pleased to publish this guest essay from Dr. Paul D. Miller.

What was social conservatism, and why did evangelicals adopt it as their political creed? What has become of the movement under President Donald J. Trump?

Politically, social conservatism came to mean, above all, opposition to...

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Wednesday, 09 August 2017 20:00

On John Locke and His Woke Catholic Critics

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The world is going to hell.

This unfortunate development most certainly began with the Enlightenment (or was it Duns Scotus?) and it isentirely the fault of John Locke and his nasty gang of philosophy boys.

Thus proceeds the standard dirge of the Woke Catholic.

The Woke Catholic is a strange bird,...

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James K.A. Smith’s recent criticism of those who have made a particular sexual ethic a criterion of ‘orthodoxy’ has generated a minor kerfuffle, as these things go. My friends and Mere Fidelity collaborators Derek Rishmawy and Alastair Roberts have both weighed in, Alan Jacobs has...

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I’m pleased to publish this guest review by the Rev. Kyle Dillon.

American churches today have become divided over the question of what it means to live as Christians in an increasingly post-Christian society. Should our approach toward secular culture be one of confrontation? Adaptation?...

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Thursday, 03 August 2017 20:00

Little Platoons and the Market

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In his response to Andrew Strain, Joe Carter noted that one of Strain’s problems is the assumption that “some other people—rather than those directly engaged in the market activity—should decide what is best for those involved.”

Well, yes—at least in a way.

This...

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Critic: The first time I saw The Bathroom Bolsheviks live was in 1877. It was unlike anything I or anyone else had ever seen.1

Audience Member: When Trotsky came out on stage, the crowd wentcrazy. And then when their first song ended, he took the payday loan industry and lit it on fire. I…...

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Tuesday, 01 August 2017 20:00

In Praise of Cultural Christianity

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I’m pleased to publish this guest editorial from Stephen Wolfe.

Cultural Christianity is frequently an object of scorn in American evangelical Christianity. Though elsewhere even atheists claim to be culturally Christian (e.g., Richard Dawkins), in the United States the term usually refers to...

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I’m pleased to publish this book review by my friend Kyle Williams.

Last yeareighty-one percent of evangelicals voted for Donald Trump—a wider margin than in any previous election. These voters played no small role in tipping the scales in a contest that was decided by thin margins. But...

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Wednesday, 26 July 2017 20:00

Young Christians and the Specter of Socialism

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Earlier this week Andrew Strain wrote a sharp, if also too short, post for First Things arguing that economic debates that orbit around whether or not the government should intervene in the marker are ultimately meaningless. This is the gist of his argument:

Neoliberals often invoke a dichotomy...

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Tuesday, 25 July 2017 20:00

Creating a Just and Good Healthcare System

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On June 3rd, 2017, I gave a talk to theMaryland chapterof theAmerican Solidarity Party.The original text of my talk is below the video.

If there’s one thing everyone can agree on in American politics in 2017, it’s that our healthcare system does not work as it should. We spend more...

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Mere Orthodoxy Patreon Campaign

Our republic is currently embarked on an audacious experiment: We have, through a series of economic and cultural choices, destroyed many of the intermediate social structures that people rely on to shape their lives and give them a sense of purpose and significance....

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“Not again.”

That was my first thought when Eugene Peterson’s comments on gay marriage came out.

Regardless of the retraction, I knew the next few days would be ugly online. Various think-pieces (good and bad) would come, as would the tweets, the aggressive partisans, and the...

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The current story of Christian media is not—despite the pain occasioned by the passing ofBooks and Culture—exclusively one of decline and buzzfeedification. This summer marksthe advent of a new annual, edited by Michael Martin, titledJesus the Imagination.

Martin is a Byzantine Rite...

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Tuesday, 18 July 2017 20:00

17776 and the End of Nature

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If you read Hannah Anderson’s Humble Roots a few days before reading Jon Bois’s “17776” you’ll experience a kind of whiplash. Anderson’s book is about gratitude and exploring the ways that creation teaches us about God, about ourselves, and about virtue....

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  • Human beings are created in the image of God, body and soul, and have been called as such “very good.” Our bodily nature reflects God’s goodness to us and the embodied acts that we participate in (eating, sleeping, work, communicating, sexual relations, etc.) are expressions of...

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Note from Jake: This is the final post in Matt’s social conservatism series published in 2012 which we are re-publishing this week.

Post 1, Post 2, Post 3

One of my underlying themes through this week has been the current lack of confidence among mainstream social conservatism.  I’ll grant this is a somewhat surprising...

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Note from Jake: This is part three of Matt’s series on social conservatism from the fall of 2012 which we are re-publishing this week.

Part 1, Part 2

Let’s start today with a detour through David Brooks’ column from this week, which hits on some of the themes I addressed on Monday and Tuesday:

Republicans repeat formulas –...

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Note from Jake: We are re-publishing Matt’s old series from the fall of 2012 on social conservatism:

Part 1

Thesis: For social conservatism to thrive, it needs to end its hostility toward elite institutions that are currently opposed to it.

Consider this bit by Rick Santorum from this year’s Values Voter Summit, which both stunned and...