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Posted by on Aug 29, 2013 | 5 comments

What does it mean to consider the birds?

What does it mean to consider the birds?

Several people have said to me that in my last post I did nothing but raise questions without offering answers. I had written that we need to think about why we trust the Bible, but I didn’t say what my own reasons were for doing so. To demonstrate why I thought the question so important, I used an example of a Bible verse difficult to interpret in keeping with our experience. In this post I’m not going to give reasons for trusting the Bible. Instead I’m going to offer my interpretation of Matthew 6, the problematic passage I picked on. Hopefully it’ll serve as a constructive example of how to hold Scripture and Experience tightly together. This is the Bible passage: Consider the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? … Therefore...

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Posted by on Jul 19, 2013 | 9 comments

How the NSA Killed God

How the NSA Killed God

A majority of Americans approve of the National Security Administration’s (NSA) surveillance programs aimed at U.S. citizens with 56 percent of Americans “prioritize[ing] probes over privacy,” according to the latest Washington Post/Pew research numbers.[1] The argument in support of such broad and far-reaching government surveillance programs is, of course, based in counterterrorism. If we know enough, the intelligence supporters claim, we can stop future terrorist attacks. For a majority of Americans, it is clear: fear of terrorism is more pressing than freedom from government spies. True, the NSA surveillance programs have not created the dystopic realities of Orwell or Huxley. But they are (as is their broad popular support) symptomatic of a deeper and more sinister cultural reality: the reality of bureaucratization. The trend towards bureaucratization in the west has been in process for centuries and is rooted in a pursuit of efficiency and technique in all aspects of human endeavor. It is not simply the TPS report phenomenon of Office Space fame but, as Gabriel Marcel argues, it...

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Posted by on Jun 27, 2013 | 1 comment

The Idol of Technology and the Fear of Bears

The Idol of Technology and the Fear of Bears

In the last ten years there has been an average of just under 3 fatalities by bear mauling per year in North America. The last death by the paws of a grizzly in Northwest Montana was in 1998. There are around 2 million visitors a year to Glacier National Park. Of the roughly 30 million visitors to Glacier in the last 15 years, how many do you reckon were frightened of bears? Statistics surely don’t tell you everything- or even very much- but these statistics illustrate our propensity to fear despite reality. How much more so would we fear what truly costs us? There is a hotel 12 miles inside the park boundary of Glacier National Park. Situated at the top end of a mountain valley, the Many Glacier Hotel marks the trailhead for several of the best hikes in the park. Consequently, when I worked there as a concierge, we received a great deal of foot traffic from backpackers, day hikers, and others, in addition to regular hotel...

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