In the Nick of Time

Religious Affections Ministries: Conservative Christianity, Worship, Culture, Aesthetics, Classical Education, Homeschooling, Family – Christian Article

Brett Williams Science has become a proper noun. Its hegemony and authority are all but unrivaled. Sitting atop the pantheon of disciplines, it enjoys both prominence and preeminence. All other disciplines look up at it in awe and to it for guidance. If one needs proof of this dominance, one only has to look at the incredible achievements of the 20th century. The progress in that century was perhaps unparalleled in history. Take, for example, my great grandmother who died…

Read More

Theological Education in a Complex World – Christian Article

Matt Shrader Debates over theological education are nothing new. Why do we have seminary theological education? What are seminaries meant to do? What about theological education for the non-pastor? Fortunately, we do not stand alone in trying to answer these questions. Mining the wealth of those who have come before us is a worthwhile exercise. In two short essays I propose that we take some time to learn from one of our Baptist forebearers about the nature and place of…

Read More

Tried with Fire: Teaching a Lesson – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder It was the best day of his life. He had been blind from birth. One day as he sat begging he heard himself being discussed. Men were asking a rabbi whether the blindness was because of his sins or his parents’ sin. The teacher replied that it was neither: instead, God wanted an opportunity to put His glory on display. Then the rabbi, whose name was Jesus, spit in the dirt, mixed up some mud, and put…

Read More

Tried with Fire: Why Us? – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder The early chapters of Genesis trace death to Adam’s sin. Along with death came an entire brood of calamities. Alienation from God, suspicion of and hostility toward other people, grinding labor, sorrow, and physical pain all began with the sentence of death. At that time the created order was altered so that things no longer functioned according to their original design and purpose. For example, the ground was cursed and certain plants were changed so that they…

Read More

Tried with Fire: Those Who Cannot Believe – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder The missionary was well stricken in years and ready to see her Lord. She didn’t regret the decades that she and her husband had spent pushing into the jungle to bring the gospel to unreached peoples. She didn’t resent the bouts of disease or the other hardships they had endured navigating the rivers. Still, she had one sorrow: “I can’t remember where we buried my babies.” She had held them, one after another, there in the bush…

Read More

Tried with Fire: Death and Its Brood – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder God did not create human beings to suffer or die. Nothing in the Bible teaches that pain had any place in the world God made. God fashioned humanity, both male and female, as part of His good creation. He gave them His blessing. He put them in a place of shelter and provision. He understood and provided everything that was good for them. In return, He required only one thing: that Adam, and later Eve, would not…

Read More

Tried with Fire: The Way Things Used to Be – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder Human suffering is universal. We all feel pain. We ought to expect it, but usually we don’t. When suffering intrudes, we default to self-pity. Rather than saying, “It’s my turn,” we ask, “Why me?” Perhaps we ought to remember why people suffer at all. We should recall that God did not hardwire our affliction into the original creation. The early chapters of Genesis include two accounts of creation, the second of which retells a part of the…

Read More

Tried with Fire: When Pain is Personal – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder For just a moment, Carlos’s tearless gaze turned defiant. “I don’t understand it,” he said. “What I do know is that I’m just so angry. And I have no answers.” This conversation took place beside the casket of Carlos’s adolescent son. The teenager had been tinkering with the family car in an open garage. A young stranger had come up the driveway, shot Carlos’s son, and then walked on as if nothing had happened. To all appearances…

Read More

Not Growing Up Fundamentalist | Religious Affections Ministries: Conservative Christianity, Worship, Culture, Aesthetics, Classical Education, Homeschooling, Family – Christian Article

Jeff Straub In recent weeks, my colleague Kevin Bauder has written a series reflecting on the fundamentalism of his youth. He expressed gratitude for those who he knew in his early life and their influence upon his future ministry.  His exposure to fundamentalism happened early and was pretty good. This got me thinking about my journey of not growing up in fundamentalism—actually, of not growing up in a Christian home at all. We were Christmas and Easter Christians. Oh yes,…

Read More

Growing Up Fundamentalist, Part Seven: Vocation – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder One of the rituals of life at Bible college was the daily chapel service. In chapel we heard preaching by local pastors and other Christian leaders. We sang hymns—usually better ones than the hymns I’d grown up singing. Part of chapel was also devoted to community life. Chapels were like student assemblies with announcements, skits, and congratulations for students who achieved some milestone. Life in a Bible college was as varied as life in any college or…

Read More

Growing Up Fundamentalist, Part Eight: Seminary – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder At the time my father enrolled in Bible college, few fundamentalist pastors went to seminary. That was beginning to change a decade later as I approached my senior year. Some of my professors were encouraging me toward seminary. One evening our church hosted a seminary president at a special event, and he took the time to talk to me about the process. He invited me to come visit his school. He also suggested that I think about…

Read More

Growing Up Fundamentalist, Part Nine: Reflections – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder Over the past several years I have read a number of books and articles about “growing up fundamentalist.” Almost without exception these works have been written by people who are trying to justify their life choices by pointing to the oppressiveness of their fundamentalist upbringing. In some cases they claim to have been abused. In other cases they dwell on the restrictiveness of the fundamentalist environment. These narratives leave the impression that growing up fundamentalist must be…

Read More

No Church on Sunday? Part 1 – Christian Article

Jeff Straub Recently, no less a public figure than J. D. Greear, the current president of the Southern Baptist Convention and pastor of The Summit of Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, announced to his nine Summit campuses that there would be no weekend services at any of its locations. People were tired after a busy holiday season and they were encouraged to worship at home. A worship resource page was posted on the church’s website to facilitate the home worship experience that…

Read More

Most Interesting Reading of 2018: Part Two – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder In last week’s “In the Nick of Time” I began listing my most interesting reading from 2018. Here that list continues. Both submissions should be read together as a single list. Let me state that these are not necessarily the best books that I read (though some of them are). Nor am I suggesting these as titles that you should read. The listing will tell you mostly about me and what I find interesting, and I know…

Read More

Most Interesting Reading of 2018: Part One – Christian Article

Kevin T. Bauder Every now and then I try to provide a list of the books I’ve found most interesting during the preceding year. These are not necessarily the most useful books or the books that I think everybody ought to read. They are simply the titles that I found intriguing for one reason or another. Your mileage may vary. The list is too long to cover in a single issue of “In the Nick of Time.” Here is the…

Read More