Why should I read DeLeuze?

I listen to a Christian hipster podcast called Homebrewed Christianity. They were recently part of a conference called Subverting the Norm where the topic was radical theology, the theology of people like John Caputo and Peter Rollins. It’s hard to tell what exactly radical theology is claiming about God. It descends from the “God is dead” theology of 50 years ago which apparently isn’t atheistic so much as it is apophatic, saying that we can’t know as much with certainty about God as we would like. Anyway, listening to the podcast today, I heard a guy talking about how the French theorist Gilles DeLeuze had opened his eyes. So I wanted to pose the question to any of my hipster theory-head readers: why should I read DeLeuze or Malabou or other contemporary European continental philosophers or for that matter Nietzsche, Heidegger, or Hegel? Continue reading

Five C’s of Christian Mansplanation

I witnessed a conversation on facebook last night where one of these young, restless, well informed Christian guys was being a mansplaining stereotype of himself. There is a particular form of Christian thought that causes people (usually men because of how we’re wired but occasionally women) to think they’re experts in the faith after maybe a couple of years of serious Bible study. Their expertise then gives them the duty to “mansplain” Christianity, e.g. do things like ask patronizing, predictable rhetorical questions of complete strangers in social media in order to help them become experts in Christianity too. This morning while taking a bath, I thought of five C’s that characterize Christian mansplanation: clarity, conclusiveness, conformity, commodity, and control. Continue reading

Word, life, light: the eternal side of Christmas

I decided to do something different for my LifeSign sermon this weekend. Normally for Christmas, we look at the accounts of Christ’s birth given in the gospels of Matthew and Luke. Mark starts with Jesus’ baptism rather than his birth. John describes Jesus’ incarnation from His eternal perspective as the Word of God who became flesh. Part of John’s opening is one of my favorite verses in the whole Bible, John 1:5, which says, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not seize it.” Since there’s a lot of darkness in our world right now with school shootings and fiscal cliffs in the news, I felt called to preach on John 1:1-5 about the hope that is established by the incredible eternal identity of the baby who was born in Bethlehem. I will summarize my message below. Here is the audio: Continue reading