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As the pandemic still rages on in America, many churches have had to abruptly transition to new forms of ministry they were not prepared to do in the first place. Countless preachers and ministry teams have scrambled to get high-quality online worship services available, Bible study groups and youth groups are meeting via web calls, and other organizations that traditionally use churches for gatherings (Alcoholics Anonymous, Boy Scouts, Young Life, etc.) have also been hit. The pandemic has in a biblical sense, forced Christians into an exile of sorts. However, I think this exile will chasten us into the kind of Church we should have already been: a church that is boundless, and not tied down to a brick and mortar location, and a church that is dauntless, instead of mired by the struggles of this world. …


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I was originally going to title this article a “book review” but I decided to go with “reflection” instead because of a couple reasons. The first you ask? The author, Dr. Antipas Harris, was once one of my professors at Regent University. He has since moved up in the world, now as the President-Dean of Jakes Divinity School in Dallas, Texas. Yes, that Jakes. He also founded the Urban Renewal Center (URC) at my home church, the First Presbyterian Church of Norfolk (VA), which boldly sought to challenge and change the conversation in the City of Norfolk (and perhaps the nation itself) we have about race, racism, inequality, and racial reconciliation. …


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In my previous article, “Psychologizing Religion: Is God an Imaginary Friend?” I explored the so-called projection theory that was developed by Sigmund Freud. (Feel free to read the executive summary of that article here.) In viewing religious beliefs through a psychoanalytical lens, he saw God as nothing more than an imaginary father who could satisfy our subconscious desires, hopes, and fears. Although I believe I was successful in delivering a critique of the projection theory, there were a number of intersecting ideas that kept coming up in my research that I had to put on the back-burner and save for a follow-up article — this one. …


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When the Enlightenment was inaugurated by Immanuel Kant in 1784, public institutions — most notably the Church and State — became the subject of intense scrutiny. It was not enough to simply question the authority and dogmas of these institutions, rather many found it necessary to pursue projects of (what would later be called by Jacques Derrida as) deconstruction. The goal of these projects was to conceptually dismantle not only the ideologies of these institutions (such as ‘the divine right of kings’) but also their antecedent conditions. …


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This year we celebrate the 70th anniversary of Antony Flew’s article titled “Theology and Falsification” published in Philosophy Now. Even to this day it remains a standard must-read article in university philosophy of religion programs. Although short (you can read the Golden Jubilee republication here), it marked a watershed moment in Anglo-American philosophical discourse because it applied developments in the philosophy of science to the philosophy of religion. The specific development was the falsifiability criterion, which was Karl Popper’s attempt to not only solve the problem of induction, but to also identify the difference between legitimate scientific inquiry and pseudoscience or superstition. …


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When you you have a maintenance or repair problem in your home, you call a contractor. When you want to get serious about losing weight, you join a gym or hire a personal fitness specialist. When you need help with a subject at school, you get tutoring. Whenever we debate some policy point, we consult subject matter experts. So why is it when it comes to so many aspects of our lives we are ready and willing to get help, except when it comes to critical thinking? …


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You have heard of dead in the water. Well dead reckoning is what sailors used to do before the days of computer assisted navigation if they needed to figure out where exactly they were and had no other means (such as celestial navigation) to determine their longitude and latitude — also known as a ‘fix.’ The process is quite simple: start with your last known fix, and then plot all course changes and velocities that you made since that fix. …

About

Gordon Tubbs

Clear and critical thinking-out-loud about philosophical and theological topics from a Christian perspective.

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