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Author: Sam Paschall

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“On Fire” For Jesus?

May 16, 2012

I suppose I have been trying to tackle some of the evangelical jargon that has actually enslaved us to an anemic spirituality (most recently “it’s not a religion, it’s a relationship”). Being raised in and inculcated with these phrases I only know them as an insider. I didn’t always think these phrases were odd except […]

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How the Gospel Changes Us

May 1, 2012

“I see men, but they look like trees, walking.” Mark 8:24 The evangelical church seems to waffle between some form of antinomianism (a rejection of God’s law as no longer binding for spiritual growth) and its equal opposite moralism (an affirmation of God’s law as the solution to spiritual growth). We struggle profoundly with knowing […]

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It’s Not Personal, It’s Business

April 21, 2012

“Whatever else anything is it ought to begin by being personal” –Meg Ryan You’ve Got Mail Though evangelicals have been engrained with the belief that Christianity isn’t a religion but rather a relationship we seem to have lost our bearings. I would certainly not be the first to notice the consumerist tendencies within American evangelical […]

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We Don’t Have a Direct Relationship With God

April 3, 2012

We evangelicals tout the battle cry “its not a religion its a relationship,” eschewing institutional formality, priestly orders, and list-based self-justification. We say it as if it’s obvious what we mean. Yet it doesn’t seem at all obvious to me, sin-stained as I am, how to have a “personal relationship” with an infinite, immense, self-existing, […]

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A Vacuum of Authority, An Inconsistent Spirituality

March 21, 2012

Suffer me a brief history lesson. North American evangelicalism can be traced through three waves of revivalistĀ development. Wave 1: Jonathan Edwards + George Whitefield + the Tennent Bros – mid-eighteenth century. This Calvinistic revival laid the groundwork for the other waves to come, perhaps most convincingly through the preaching of George Whitefield. Whitefield’s remarkable charisma, […]

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The Strange Spirituality of Evangelicals

March 15, 2012

The term evangelical is about as slippery as a wet bar of soap in a hot shower.Try to define an evangelical… I dare you. The moment you do some self-identified evangelical will invariably take offense at the boundary you drew which excluded them (ahh… we are such an inclusive bunch aren’t we?).The necessary consequent of […]

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