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Life Pushes Through The Desert Sand

October 10, 2018

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This is the last sample chapter of a book I’m writing, which maps out how white American evangelical Christianity morphed from intellectual sophistication into an arena for bullies, trashing its heritage and time-honored creeds in the process. Yet all is not despair. The book’s final section, “Samples of Hope,” probes three vibrant ministries that signal many […]

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The Buried Roots of Evangelical Bullying

September 26, 2018

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Questions arise: Who signed the bully permits so intimidators could grab power?

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When Bossy Alphas Hijack A Faith

August 20, 2018

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I’ve been writing a book, tentatively entitled The Intimidator’s Club, that wrestles with the question: “What do I do when the river that swept me into the life of Christ now empties into a toxic morass?”

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2017 and the Non-evangelical Evangelical

December 29, 2017

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The non-evangelical evangelicals are actually more evangelical than self-identified white evangelicals –and they’re more synced with their kin outside the US, who never wed themselves to manipulative politicians and never waged wars over biblical “inerrancy” verses “infallibility.”

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Will Rupert Murdoch Go To Seminary?

December 19, 2017

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Some vaguely-associated vignettes as Congress prepares to vote on the revised tax reform package, supported by only a sliver of the American populace. Vignette Number One A Facebook friend doesn’t muffle his sarcasm: Congratulations to my friends who are among the wealthiest 1% in the country: You get 83% of all the benefits of our huge […]

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It’s in every corner of the Bible: God loves the downtrodden

August 10, 2017

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Cross-published on the HuffPost. I couldn’t escape. There was no exit. I longed to crawl into a pitch-black cave between chemotherapy sessions while GOP Senate leaders repeatedly hurled their proposals to cut off my Medicaid. I was all brawl at first, but I felt flattened as the dystopian proposals snaked their way through the House […]

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The real message of Genesis …

September 1, 2014

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My suspicions have always nagged: Does the creationism-evolutionism debate totally miss the point? Let’s chill. Let’s listen to the message of Genesis 1-3,

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How Democrats Snatch Defeat From The Jaws of Victory

July 14, 2014

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Let’s ask the real election-year question: Why isn’t the Democratic Party poised with forks and knives, ready for November’s sizzling elephant steak? Republican popularity spirals amid denials of verified science, yet there’s genuine fear of a GOP Senate takeover. We should be dreaming of 1964, when Democrats held two-thirds majorities in both houses after routing Goldwater.

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Finding true mentors: They’re next door and down the street

October 27, 2013

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… they’re given a volatility license because their ministries are bloated and loaded. Hats off to them for drawing those crowds and their indisputable communication and organizational skills, but there’s more to Christian success than fund-raising and reaching a target audience. Otherwise, we’d be scolding Jesus for losing his following as he hung on the cross. Christian success would at least embrace Proverbs 14:17: “A quick-tempered man does foolish things” as well as James 1:19-20: “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.”

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Can the past point us to the future?

October 24, 2012

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Swartz guides us down the baby boomer’s memory lane, evoking images of flames in Watts, Newark, and Detroit – and black arm bands and student marches and tear gas and police riots and F-4’s and B-52’s and U.S. marines dodging Hue’s snipers in the Tet Offensive. Through it all, I couldn’t help but mourn over the what-if’s: What if the Evangelical Left saw nuances and shades? What if some of its youthful, bulldog leaders possessed the politician’s wisdom and forged alliances with enlightened conservatives? What if the American Old Left, grounded in pro-religious New Deal liberalism and often embraced by evangelicals, had survived the assault of the fervently secular New Left, which scared off many Americans and tainted the “liberal” label?

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