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About Todd Brewer

Managing Editor for mbird.com. Phd in New Testament and Early Christianity from Durham University, England. On Twitter @toddbrewer_

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Author Archive
    

    The Folly of the Cross in Our Divided World

    Crucifixes are kind of everywhere, if you look closely enough. We wear them as necklaces, earrings, or tattoos; we use them to decorate our houses; and most churches usually place a cross front and center. Athletes make the sign of the cross when they excel in competition. Vampires are repelled by the mere sight of […]

    Another Week Ends: Tom Holland, White Fragility, Religious Fandom, J.I. Packer, and Cancel-Culture Fear

    1. High Profiles this week featured a fascinating in-depth interview with history writer Tom Holland about his intellectual journey, personal beliefs, Islam, secular liberalism, contemporary news, and Christianity more broadly. I think I am naturally conservative. I think I’m more moved by things that have been than things that might be. I feel the power of what’s […]

    For the Love of Dog

    Everyone is getting a dog nowadays. Adoption shelters are virtually empty and those wanting their dog from a breeder are met with long wait-lists or exorbitant prices. If you were on the fence about “man’s best friend” heading into quarantine, then the agony of the last few months pushed you over the edge. The kids […]

    A Newly Discovered (and Entirely Short-Sighted) Ancient Roman Letter

    A rare find that’s almost too good to be true: Demetrius to Celsus, greetings. I pray you may always be in good health for many years to come. I praise you for your inquiring mind to discern the truth and wish to pass on to you what I have learned about the new Christ cult. […]

    Another Week Ends: Jim Carrey’s Revelation, COVID Judgment, a New PZ Interview, Political Idolatry, the Curated Authenticity of Rachel Hollis, and the Great Awokening in Fiction

    1. If you’ve ever seen an interview with Jim Carrey, you quickly realize that he is incredibly weird and awkwardly introspective. At times he seems to either be the lunatic of The Mask or a shaman-mystic, or both at the same time. Carrey is always fascinating, and judging from this LA Times article, his upcoming […]

    The Emotional Plausibility of Faith vs. Doubt

    When many think about Christian doubt, they tend to imagine it as a kind of midpoint between faith and unbelief, existing in hues of grey. Matters of faith in a transcendent God are rarely so black and white, it is said, and the stance of faithful doubt is perhaps the appropriate stance all Christians should […]

    Lay Down Your Weary Smartphone

    Before there was Seinfeld, there was Cheers—a 1980s comedy about the lives of bartenders and regular patrons of a local pub. The show is famous for its lovable and deeply flawed cast of characters that spanned over 11 seasons. Now almost 30 years later, the jokes mostly hold up. But viewers today will readily note […]

    Another Week Ends: Martin Luther on COVID-19, Tara Isabella Burton, Christ and Calamity, Generational Sin, and Faithful Doubt

    1. Mere Orthodoxy has published an excerpt from an excellent book, Christ and Calamity: Grace and Gratitude in the Darkest Valley, by Harold Senkbeil. I’ve noted some highlights below and if you like what you read, the e-book is free this month: Just what does it mean to deny yourself and take up your cross? […]

    Comfort to Afflicted Saints

    Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:3) The pithiness of some of Jesus’ teachings, coupled with their familiarity in the church, often empties them of their radicality and counter-intuitive divergence from commonsense. Translated into the language of ethics for what Christians must do or become on the […]

    Good News That Never Goes Out of Style

    When the Gospel Becomes Quotidian, Still the Spiritual Fire Smolders

    Human Maturity Between Sin and Righteousness

    An oldie-but-goodie from Paul Zahl’s “Grace in Practice” (p. 123):

    My status from God’s side is unassailable and indefectible. My substance from my side, from the analysis of anyone who knows me, is good and bad at the same time, or rather, mostly the same old, same old that I have always been, though now covered over by the thin red line, the imputing blood of Christ. We could say that this position of the simul-iustus-et-peccator self [at the same time righteous and a sinner] is the last word in what the world calls ‘maturity’. That is, the simul-iustus-et-peccator self is secure in the love of another, and at the same time cognizant of its limitations, faults, and insufficiencies – its sins, in other words […]

    This is the place where Christianity becomes a matchless definition of human maturity. It is the key to living, because it lives in hope and belovedness (iustus), while at the same time accepting the limitations of a fallen, tripped-up character (peccator). This is integration. Simul iustus et peccator integrates the human object. It combines imputation, the fact that God brings everything to the table as far as my identity is concerned, and the fact that I bring nothing to the table whatsoever. The No pronounced on my sin, which I shall carry in my body and person for the rest of my life, is united with the Yes pronounced upon that sin. Imputation makes it all right for me to live as I am and also in light of what I ought and want to be.

    And for more info on PZ’s most recent book click here!

     

    Featured image: Evie S. on Unsplash

    A Useful Lie: The Music Man and Imputation

    Harold Hill, Christ, and the Parade of the Justified

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