Category: History

hauerwas-benedict-option

Theologians Were Arguing About the Benedict Option 35 Years Ago

There’s been quite a bit of controversy lately. Perhaps you’ve heard about it. The uproar surrounds a set of proposals regarding the state of American society and the character of the church in its midst. Let me give you some...

/ March 13, 2017
benedict-option

The “New Alarmism” is not new and is not alarmism.

When asked about the Holy Roman Empire the French philosophe Voltaire once quipped that said empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire. I had something like that thought while reading Dr. James K. A. Smith’s piece for the...

/ March 10, 2017
limits-of-policy

On Presidential Politics and Evangelical Cultural Clout

If you’ll indulge me, I’m going to circle back around to Emma Green’s review of Rod’s book while also linking it to Katelyn Beaty’s review of the same published earlier this week in the Washington Post.

/ March 3, 2017
henry-viii-donald-trump

How to Deal With Erratic Corpulent Ginger Authoritarian Much-Married Rulers: Options for Christians in Public Life

Note: Some of these Options are better than others. The Wolsey Option Through an excess of personal ambition, tie your whole career to the favor of an unpredictable and potentially vicious master. Lose his favor anyway. The Cromwell Option Facilitate...

/ November 18, 2016
evangelicals-civil-rights

Are Religious Liberty Restrictions God’s Judgment on Racism?

“I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities, and lack of bread in all your places, yet you did not return to me,” declares the LORD. – Amos 4:6 I did a number of medical school rotations in...

/ August 15, 2016
book-reviews

Reviewing Nancy Isenberg’s “White Trash”

This guest review is by Dr. Miles Smith. In 2014 The King’s College professor Anthony Bradley wrote an article on the plight of poor whites for World Magazine. That Bradley, an African American, first raised the issue seems strange, but...

/ August 8, 2016
hamilton-patriotism

Hamilton, Meritocracy, and Patriotism

I held out for as long as I could. My resistance was sustained chiefly by a stubborn contrarianism that resists as many trends as possible, particularly those that can be credibly connected to New York City, Washington, San Francisco, or Los...

/ July 20, 2016
flag-american-exceptionalism-civil-religion

Reviewing John Wilsey’s “American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion”

I’m pleased to publish this guest review today by Hillsdale College visiting professor Dr. Miles Smith. You can learn more about Dr. Smith from his bio below this post. You can also follow him on Twitter @IVMiles A book exploring...

/ January 7, 2016

The Evangelical Roots of the Benedict Option

In 1948 the Bible Presbyterian Church, a quasi-fundamentalist evangelical denomination, sent a 36-year-old pastor and his family to Europe to check on the state of the church after World War II. The family settled in Switzerland and worked mostly in...

/ September 5, 2014

Two scholars debate violence and the nation state

In the past month there has been a fascinating exchange going on between occasional Mere O contributor Brad Littlejohn and DePaul’s William Cavanaugh. It started with this critique of Cavanaugh’s work by Littlejohn: In his 2004 essay “Killing for the Telephone Company”...

/ July 18, 2013