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

Inklingations - Apologetic Report
Sunday, 19 November 2017 10:14

7 Thoughts From the News Cycle

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I will probably elaborate on some of these points in future posts. For now, I offer 7 stray observations on the last few weeks of American culture:

1) American manhood is in crisis. Men in our society lack religious affiliation, communal bonds, and healthy role models. As far as I can tell, sports,...

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Tuesday, 24 October 2017 01:57

Eluding E-Books

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Mark Bauerlein’s observations about the decline of e-reading and the “Persistence of Print” ring very true to my own experience. I have now tried on two separate occasions, and with two separate e-readers, to invest in digital books. Both times I just couldn’t do it. My...

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Monday, 09 October 2017 01:13

Harvey Weinstein vs Billy Graham

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In Ross Douthat’s weekend op-edon the lecherous Harvey Weinstein, he makes, in passing, what I think is a very important point:

If liberals want to restrain the ogres in their midst, a few conservative ideas might be helpful.

First: Some modest limits on how men and women interact...

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Monday, 02 October 2017 06:18

Does Morality Matter on the Right Anymore?

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The main reason I wrote my reply to Ben Domenech about Hugh Hefner, and the main reason I’m thankful to First Things for running it, is that I sensed—correctly, as it turned out—that Domenech’s sentiment was more widely shared on the Right than conservative evangelicals...

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Wednesday, 27 September 2017 23:31

Hugh Hefner’s Legacy is a Locked Room

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C.S. Lewis wrote that “a man with an addiction is a man with very little sales-resistance.” The fortune and fame of Hugh Hefner (1926-2017) is evidence that Lewis was right. To be fair, Hefner did not invent pornography, and what his media empire did promulgate is probably considered...

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Wednesday, 27 September 2017 04:38

Could Jeff Hood Be Your Elder?

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This is one of the most bizarre interviews you’ll read this year. It took me a couple readings to determine whether it was satire. The Amazon book attributed to the interviewee is real enough, so there goes that theory.

Now, one thing I’d like to gently rebuke my fellow evangelicals for...

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Sunday, 24 September 2017 23:43

3 Kinds of Patriotism

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A quick taxonomy:

  1. The patriotism of duty is the patriotism that involves material acts of fidelity to one’s country. This is the patriotism of military service and other varieties of selfless sacrifice. This is where patriotism becomes embodied, and its ideals take on specific actions...

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Friday, 22 September 2017 13:25

They Were Right About Us

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It’s been astonishing to watch fellow conservatives redefine everything–and I mean everything–they say they believe in order to defend President Trump. I’m now hearing from some that the President’s vulgar and hostile remarks about NFL athletes’ kneeling during...

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Friday, 22 September 2017 02:44

A Literary Reading List for Theology Students

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One of my regrets from my college years is that I didn’t receive a more literary education. By God’s design I attended a Bible college that at the time had only theological or ministerial degrees (now, they offer a Humanities degree, a Philosophy-Politics-Economics honors program, and...

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Tuesday, 19 September 2017 00:16

Capitalism and the Cleveland Browns

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Stakeholders in the NFL cannot lose—at least not under the league’s current structure. Owners split money from the league’s massive TV deals and other media revenue streams. That stream is so dependable, so huge, and so guaranteed that it’s done what large, intractable pools...

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Sunday, 17 September 2017 23:25

Hate Watching

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I didn’t watch the Emmys last night (in fact, I didn’t know they were on). But the morning after Hollywood award shows is always an interesting time on Christian social media. One of the most reliable tropes in evangelical “cultural engagement” is the blog or Facebook post...

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Friday, 15 September 2017 01:45

Racism and the Reformed Church

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I would urge you this weekend to find, or make, 50 minutes to listen to Duke Kwon’s address on racism and the Christian church. Andrew Wilson flagged it on his blog and called it the best message he’s heard all year. That’s not hyperbole. This is a powerful, uncomfortable,...

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Thursday, 14 September 2017 04:43

Why I Gave Up Being a Movie Critic

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At one time in my life I had very serious aspirations to sit for hours at a time in a movie theater, watch films, write about them, and make money (or at least, break even!). I no longer have those desires. I still love movies, and am rarely happier than in a cinema. And I will still write about...

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In my little corner of life recently there’s been some controversy over the firing of a professor, what part another professor might have played in that firing, and What It All Means for everybody involved. I don’t feel like litigating those issues here, mostly because I don’t...

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Monday, 11 September 2017 00:30

You Are What You Click

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I commend to you this excellent essay by Gracy Olmstead on our current American news culture. The entire piece is well-worth your time and reflection, but I want to zero in on one particular point Gracy makes. Toward the end of the essay Gracy says that “the news you click on is the news you...

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Friday, 08 September 2017 02:15

A new way to read this blog

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More times than I can count I’ve been asked how to subscribe to this blog via email. Until today I didn’t have a way to do that. I do now.

If you go to this link and fill out your name and email, you will receive new posts here when they publish. I wish I could insert a signup form into...

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Tuesday, 05 September 2017 23:52

Atheism vs "Thoughts Prayers"

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It’s becoming common nowadays to see atheists and skeptics ridicule prayer in the aftermath of disasters like Hurricane Harvey. One clever meme that I’ve seen this time around contains a picture of an empty truck, with the caption, “Good news! Your shipment of prayers has...

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Thursday, 31 August 2017 01:26

How to Think

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My review of Alan Jacobs’s forthcoming book How to Think: A Survival Guide For a World at Odds, is up at the Mere Orthodoxy main page.

Here’s a snippet:

Happily, How To Think is not a Trump-directed polemic or a guidebook for navigating Twitter. Readers familiar with both topics...

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Tuesday, 29 August 2017 00:46

Keep Kids Safe From Smartphones

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“Kids need smartphones. Get over it.” Thus says Jeanne Sager at The Week. I’ll give Ms. Sager credit for going all in here. Her advocacy for giving preteen children iPhones is full throated and unequivocal, which is better than some of the self-tortured do-we-or-don’t-we...

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Thursday, 24 August 2017 04:01

A Falling Out for Christians and Public Schools

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Rod Dreher reprints a correspondencebetween one of his readers and their child’s school principal, regarding a teacher’s lesson on transgenderism and sexual orientation. As the emails indicate, the parents had requested advance notice if their child’s classrooms were going to...

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Wednesday, 23 August 2017 07:52

Tweet-less

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Since deactivating my Twitter account two weeks ago, the following reflections have come to me:

  1. If there were any question before that my relationship with Twitter was addictive, now that it’s gone, I have zero doubt. It seems to me that sometimes you can’t tell how hooked you are until...

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The NAACP’s boycott of the NFL over Colin Kaepernick’s lack of a contract exemplifies in vivid focus the many ways that the American conversation about race and culture is dysfunctional. Admittedly, the stakes in this particular drama are low; whether a professional athlete is paid tens...

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Friday, 18 August 2017 00:08

10 Suggestions For New Bible College Students

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From one Bible college graduate to another, here’s a brief word to students beginning their education this month:

  1. Do not use your school work on the Bible to replace your personal reading of the Bible. Even the most spiritually helpful class time cannot compare to the cumulative effect of a...

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Wednesday, 16 August 2017 07:11

How Christians Hate

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One thing I am continually appalled at is how many professing Christians I know seem to think the following line of thinking is OK:

“When I look at the people who dislike President Trump, that makes me like him all the more.”

I want us to get honest for a minute about what this sentence...

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Monday, 14 August 2017 07:30

Writing Ourselves Off

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Freddie deBoer explains why he’s planning to drop out of the freelance business:

I just find, at this point, that the process of pitching, composing, shepherding through edits, promoting, and trying to get paid sucks the life out of me. The commercial interests of publications require editors...

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