The Great Day of Their Wrath (Revelation 6:12-17)

It has been said that God is slow, but never late. God’s slowness to fulfill his promise of a just world order redounds to the benefit of us sinners, who are given ample time to repent of the error of our ways. But God’s patience is not limitless. As C.S. Lewis somewhere puts it, there are only two kinds of people in the world: those who say to God, “Your will be done,” and those to whom God says, “Your will be done.” When God determines that more time will not result in another change of heart, then he will … Continue reading The Great Day of Their Wrath (Revelation 6:12-17)


Christianity Today offers two articles on hymns today. The first is actually a slideshow of hymnals and hymn-singing from around the world. The second is an article by my college history professor, Mark Noll: "We Are What We Sing." Here’s the opening paragraph of Noll’s article, with which I heartily agree: Evangelicalism at its best is the religion displayed in its classic hymns. The classic evangelical hymns contain the clearest, most memorable, cohesive, and widely repeated expressions of what it has meant to be an evangelical.I I’m a fan of contemporary worship music, but I also think we should keep singing … Continue reading Hymns

O Sovereign Lord, How Long? (Revelation 6.9–11)

 Submission, peacemaking, generosity, and hospitality all require patience: Patience with a corrupt government to reform, with the violent to act peaceably, with the poor to move from dependency to productivity, and with the sick to heal. The last two items are borne with comparative ease. The first two items? Not so much.   It is fascinating to me that after describing the devastation wrought on earth by the four horsemen of the Apocalypse (Rev. 6:1-8), John turns again to a scene in the throne room of heaven (6:9-11). There, he sees “under the altar the souls of those who had … Continue reading O Sovereign Lord, How Long? (Revelation 6.9–11)

“The Conservative Mind” by Peter Berkowitz

The featured article in today’s Opinion Journal is "The Conservative Mind" by Peter Berkowitz, senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. Here are the opening paragraphs. The left prides itself on, and frequently boasts of, its superior appreciation of the complexity and depth of moral and political life. But political debate in America today tells a different story. On a variety of issues that currently divide the nation, those to the left of center seem to be converging, their ranks increasingly untroubled by debate or dissent, except on daily tactics and long-term strategy. Meanwhile, those to the right of center are … Continue reading “The Conservative Mind” by Peter Berkowitz

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (6.1–8)

If there is a great tribulation, how shall we then live?   The answer to this question depends on “then.” It depends, in other words, on the environment we are called by God to inhabit. As we read Revelation 6.1–8, it becomes quite clear that God calls us to live in an environment of conquest, war, scarcity, famine, pestilence, and death—or at least to be prepared to do so.   (Some futurists, such as Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins, deny that Christians will go through the great tribulation, and perhaps they are right. But consider three facts: First, conquest, war, … Continue reading The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (6.1–8)

Is Religion Dangerous?

A recent spate of books argues that it is. Richard Dawkins’s The God Delusions, Sam Harris’s The End of Faith and Letters to a Christian Nation, and now Christopher Hitchens’s God Is Not Great all extol the virtues of atheism and excoriate the vices of faith.   Keith Ward begs to differ. A professing Christian, Ward is Professor of Divinity at Gresham College, London, and the author of numerous works of theology and philosophy.   At the outset of Is Religion Dangerous? Ward argues that flat-out denunciations of religion are “absurd.” “Worse than that,” he writes, “they ignore the available … Continue reading Is Religion Dangerous?

Four Views of the Great Tribulation (Revelation 6:1-8:5)

In Revelation 6.1–8.5, John turns our attention from heaven to earth, from the Lamb to the seven seals that he alone is worthy to open. The turn is abrupt and unpleasant, for the earthly scene John portrays is the polar opposite of the heavenly scene he has just revealed. Instead of the unending worship of heaven, we see unceasing warfare on earth, as successively greater disasters—manmade, natural, and divine—befall the planet upon the opening of each seal. This is “the great tribulation” (7.14; cf. 2.22, Matt. 24.21) whose intensity forces the question: “And who can stand?” (6.17).   When Will … Continue reading Four Views of the Great Tribulation (Revelation 6:1-8:5)

Mitt Romney and the Kennedy Mistake

Over at First Things, Francis J. Beckwith reviews Hugh Hewitt’s new book about Mitt Romney: A Mormon in the White House? He argues that American Christians considering Romney’s candidacy for the presidency should not make "the Creedal Mistake," i.e., believing that "the planks of his [religious] creed are the best standard by which to judge the suitability of a political candidate." By the same token, however, he cautions Romney not to make "the Kennedy mistake." Citing Kennedy’s September 12, 1960, speech to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association, Beckwith writes: Kennedy’s speech reads like a complete acquiescence to American mainline Protestant notions … Continue reading Mitt Romney and the Kennedy Mistake