Round Table

Round Table discussions offer insights into important issues from numerous Conciliar Post authors. Authors focus on a specific question or topic and respond with concise and precise summaries of their perspective, allowing readers to engage multiple viewpoints within the scope of one article.

03 Oct 2020

Round Table: Free Speech

“How should Christians think about free speech?” We asked three of our editors to reflect on this question. Their essays raise fundamental issues Christians must wrestle through if we hope to facilitate real dialogue in our increasingly polarized society. These reflections center on the definition of free speech, when free speech becomes a problem, and what sort of action ought to be taken in our current moment. In the spirit of Christian charity, we have

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17 Mar 2020

Round Table: Do Animals Have Souls?

In Genesis 1, God creates the animals of the sea and sky on the fifth day and subsequently creates land animals on the sixth. On this same day God also forms a certain kind of land animal in God’s own image and likeness—humankind (Gen 1:26-27). As with the animals of land, sea, and sky, humans are told to “be fruitful and multiply,” but then receive a unique set of instructions from God: “Fill the earth

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Ohio State Library Stacks
13 Nov 2019

What We’ve Been Reading: Fall 2019

Here at Conciliar Post, many of our authors are avid readers. Below are some of the books we’ve been reading in 2019 along with a short review for each one. Feel free to join the conversation and offer your recommended readings. John Ehrett, Lutheran Restoring the Soul of the University: Unifying Christian Higher Education in a Fragmented Age (Perry L. Glanzer, Nathan F. Alleman & Todd C. Ream) The authors—professors at Christian universities—lay out a

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02 Sep 2019

Round Table: The Knowability of God

The Scriptures are somewhat ambiguous about how fully God can be known by human beings. On the one hand, the Son has revealed God to be our Father and has pioneered the path of faith—offering unprecedented access through grace. Jesus teaches that the pure in heart “will see God” (Matt 5:8). Likewise in the first Johannine epistle: “Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do

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08 Feb 2019

Round Table: Confession

In 1996, the independent Scottish band Belle & Sebastian released their second full-length album, If You’re Feeling Sinister. More than twenty years later, Sinister is still revered as one of the greatest albums of the 90’s—ranking alongside notable alternative rock acts such as Beck, Smashing Pumpkins, Radiohead, and Nirvana. While the aforementioned bands were known for their use of heavily distorted electric guitars, Belle and Sebastian crafted a gentler tone, reminiscent of 60’s era folk-rock

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28 Nov 2018

What We’ve Been Reading: Fall 2018

Here at Conciliar Post, many of us are avid readers, both within and without our varied vocations. These are just a few of the good books we’ve been reading lately! Jeff Hart, Presbyterian Disruptive Witness: Speaking Truth in a Distracted Age (Alan Noble) If you’ve ever wondered why it is so difficult to live out and share your faith in our modern context, you will benefit from reading Disruptive Witness. Drawing on the work of

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11 Jul 2018

Round Table: Euthanasia

The 2016 film Me Before You stars Emilia Clarke as an awkward young woman who needs employment to help support her poor working class family. After losing her job at a local bakery, she applies to become a caretaker for the adult son of a wealthy family. The son, played by Sam Claflin, was an active and successful young man before being injured in a motorcycle accident that left him as a quadriplegic. The two

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02 Apr 2018

Round Table: Can We Be Certain Of Our Salvation?

Throughout church history, the question, “Can we be certain of our salvation?,” has troubled many believers. This question naturally arises because different Christian traditions have divergent teachings on the nature of salvation itself. How one is saved and whether or not this salvation can be subsequently lost are the subject of much discussion between believers. One noteworthy response to these questions from church history was the development of the so-called “Protestant work ethic.” This idea

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Recent posts

23 Sep 2022

Consider the Orc

One of the most haunting moments in Amazon’s new show The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power comes in its fourth episode, when the mysterious Adar, whose origins and identity remain unclear, comes to tend a seriously injured orc. The orc and warlord lock eyes for a long moment before Adar, in an act of mercy, puts the wounded orc out of its suffering. The sequence is arresting because, in that moment, the

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13 Aug 2022

Theonomy’s Problem: Universals v. Particulars

Against my better judgment, but because it’s irresistible fun, I have written on theonomy again. This time, in a symposium for London Lyceum. My contribution is a refutation of the common theonomist claim to the New England Puritans. It is long but I still, if you can believe it, was not able to include everything I wanted to. One point that would have been out of scope for that argument is that, in a sense,

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Driver's view from a moving car
03 Aug 2022

What the Eastern Church Does Best

In a previous article, I admitted the tension of experiencing unanswered prayers for my own chronic condition, all the while rejoicing in the fact that the Church heals souls; “…for what does it profit a man if he gains his whole life while destroying his soul?” There I made the claim that God primarily heals the outer human in order to prove that He can heal the inner human, because physical healing offers little benefit

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30 Jul 2022

Cosmic Order and the Architecture Wars

There’s something primordially powerful about the idea of a house with infinite rooms, something that taps into the deepest recesses of childhood fear and wonder. All of us likely have some memory, however faint, of finding ourselves in a vast alien space that seems to go on forever. At least for me, the emotion that this thought stirs up lies somewhere at the nexus of both claustrophobia and agoraphobia—a flash of sublime awe and wonder,

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20 Jul 2022

The Utopian Trifecta

Once upon a time, there was a good and gracious King. Though he was king of all the land, he gave one of his lands to his oldest subject, but this man was soon tricked by the king’s enemy into giving up his authority over the land. The king’s enemy ruled with wickedness, and an iron fist. He allowed injustice, championed selfishness, and permitted evil. Under the evil king, the people of the land hurt

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17 Jun 2022

Tradition is the Answer to Questions We’ve Forgotten We Have

If you are a publicly confessing Christian for long enough you will likely encounter an interesting event: at some point a secular friend will ask for your prayers. It is often the same one who gets annoyed when you can’t make brunch on Sunday morning, or who was obviously uncomfortable at your church wedding. Generally the request for prayer follows a moment of immediate need: a scary medical diagnosis, or a layoff with impending financial

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15 Jun 2022

Walking and Running

I see it time and again…my two-year-old daughter, who has been walking for over a year, decides to take off and ends up falling flat on the floor. It’s very cute, and she gets up and acts like it was nothing, but my breath catches every time it happens. It catches because I know that this time, she could land awkwardly and break her arm or worse. She knows how to walk, and she knows

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01 Jun 2022

The Providential Love of God: Reflections on Psalm 107

Psalm 107 is a song celebrating the steadfast love of the LORD: “Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!” This love is experienced by God’s people after a particular historical pattern; one that deserves some reflection if for no other reason than the corrective it provides to the banal triumphalism that pervades so much of American evangelical celebration of the love of God in song. Psalm

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25 May 2022

In Praise of the Ascension

The great Anglican priest and preacher, John Stott, once lamented that the Church had decided to speak of Jesus’ entry into heaven as the Feast of the Ascension. It would be more biblical, insisted Stott, to speak instead of the Feast of the Exaltation of Christ. Just as Jesus was raised from the dead by the Father, so too was he taken up into heaven by the Father. Both of these events testify not to

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