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

Tuesday, 28 January 2020 19:00

Happiness, Virtue, and the Bastard Science

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Happiness is a personal problem. Or so it may seem. Consider the self-help section. A library of recent books offers just the right mindset, self-care regimen, or practical hack for troubled souls who, presumably, hope that one more piece of advice might be just what they need. Self-declared...

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Monday, 27 January 2020 19:00

Why Protecting Rivers is a Conservative Cause

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Rivers play a pivotal role in our national imagination. In school, we learn about Abraham Lincoln’s travels on the Mississippi River, or Lewis and Clark’s passage along river routes toward the Pacific Ocean. From the Bible, we learn of the river running through the new Jerusalem, with...

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Sunday, 26 January 2020 23:19

Hinterland: Review of an Apocalypse

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Shattered souls and ruined lives are the plot, and the ever-burgeoning, post-industrial wastelands created by the forces of global capitalism are the setting in Phil A. Neel’s gripping and brutal new book Hinterland: America’s New Landscape of Class and Conflict. Part travelogue, part...

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Several years ago Matthew Lee Anderson wrote in these pages that there is no pro-life case for Donald Trump. In many ways the argument has not aged well—Anderson was deeply skeptical that Trump would make good on his promise to appoint pro-life justices. I shared that skepticism. We were both...

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Wednesday, 22 January 2020 19:00

Leviathan, Zarathustra, and the End(s) of Liberalism

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Enter scene left: House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi harangues the House while pointing to a giant styrofoam board with the pledge of allegiance emblazoned across it. Meanwhile, Rep. Adam Schiff walks the articles of impeachment from the House to the Senate with ceremony and pomp.

Enter scene right:...

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Tuesday, 21 January 2020 19:00

The Freedom of the Trad

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Freddie De Boer has a typically sharp post up at his personal blog analyzing the ‘trad’ trend in some (mostly culturally elite) social circles. Do read the whole thing, but this graf gets at the main critique nicely:

Here’s the problem: you cannot choose to be premodern. If you are...

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An atheist, a Christian, and a Jew start talking about science and faith. This might seem like it is either the lead up to joke or the beginning of a fight. Instead, it was the setting of a meeting I attended last January where Dr. S. Joshua Swamidass gathered scientists and theologians of nearly...

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Tuesday, 14 January 2020 16:00

The Imprecatory Psalms with Trevor Laurence

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Christians are told to love their enemies and pray for those who persecute them, but should we also pray for justice and judgment to befall our enemies? Trevor Laurence joins Derek and Andrew to discuss the imprecatory psalms and their implications in the Christian Life, their biblical-theological...

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This is a two-part essay. The first concerns several of the weaker responses to Mark Galli’s recent editorial at Christianity Today calling for President Trump’s impeachment. The latter concerns two of the better critiques and, in particular, one argumentative thread helpfully...

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Although the word “apocalypse” in contemporary popular imagination connotes “the end of the world,” the word in biblical and theological literature means an “unveiling” or a “revelation.” In apocalyptic literature, the truth about reality is not...

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Sunday, 05 January 2020 19:00

Our Fathers Left Us Evangelicalism

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My Father Left Me Ireland is a memoir of longing and reclamation. Michael Brendan Dougherty recounts his rediscovery of his cultural roots and taking possession of an absent heritage as he reconnected with his absent Irish father. Dougherty sought an identity with meaning in contrast to his bare...

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Thursday, 02 January 2020 02:07

12 Days of Christmas: January 2

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The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.’ I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing...

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When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they...

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Tuesday, 31 December 2019 00:27

Confusing the Substance and Accidents of Star Wars

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The recent, and last, installment of the Star Wars Episodic saga, The Rise of Skywalker, is alive on the silver screen. The film opened to a successful $176.5 million (75 million less than The Force Awakens, mind you) and is sure to be a landmark in pop-culture history.

No matter the numerical...

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Monday, 30 December 2019 21:00

The 12 Days of Christmas: December 31

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And he said to me, “These words are trustworthy and true. And the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, has sent his angel to show his servants what must soon take place.”

“And behold, I am coming soon. Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy of this...

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Sunday, 29 December 2019 21:00

12 Days of Christmas: December 30

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And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth swill bring their glory...

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Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,...

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Saturday, 28 December 2019 03:44

The 12 Days of Christmas: Holy Innocents

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At that time, declares the LORD, I will be the God of all the clans of Israel, and they shall be my people.” Thus says the LORD: “The people who survived the sword found grace in the wilderness; when Israel sought for rest, the LORD appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with...

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Thursday, 26 December 2019 23:57

The 12 Days of Christmas: St. John the Evangelist

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Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself.He is clothed in a robe...

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Tuesday, 24 December 2019 19:00

The 12 Days of Christmas: Christmas Day

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Thanks to Mere O contributor John Shelton, we have a series of Christmas reflections to share over the 12 days of Christmas. Today’s reflection comes from Ali Kjergaard.

But there will be no gloom for her who was in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and...

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Wednesday, 18 December 2019 19:00

A Hidden Life as Temptation Narrative

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How do we live when nobody is looking, or when the collateral damage of pursuing good might outweigh complicity in evil?

Terrence Malick’s film A Hidden Lifeis based upon the true story of Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian peasant who was conscripted into the Nazi armed forces but...

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Tuesday, 17 December 2019 19:00

Mere Orthodoxy Best of 2019

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Here is our annual list of the top pieces we published in 2019 and the general year in writing at Mere O.

January

Can We Reject Paedobaptism and Still Receive Paedobaptists?

Several of our most read pieces this year came in this series, which is a debate between Gavin Ortlund and Jonathan Leeman as to...

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Monday, 16 December 2019 19:00

The 2019 Eliot Awards

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Each year in December we publish our Eliot Awards at Mere Orthodoxy for excellence in long-form writing over the past 12 months. You can read our previous editions using the links below:

We will also, as we did last year, be publishing a Best of Mere O for 2019...

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Wednesday, 11 December 2019 19:00

Come, Desire of Nations, Come: An Advent Reflection

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And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the Lord of Hosts.

-Haggai 2:7

Congregations always enjoy a spirit of levity for Advent hymns. Everyone sings that much louder than usual, in whatever key they can manage. And I...

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Matt introduces the latest podcast at Mere Orthodoxy, “Sacred Season.” Sacred Season is a new podcast hosted by Danielle Hitchen & Erin Morrow Hawley that covers the vocation of parenting. As Hitchen and Hawley talk about this season of life, they help to frame parenting by...

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