All tagged What Does it Mean

The Life and Death of the American Christian

In recent history, there has been a radical attempt to redefine life and death. The definition of the beginning of life has been successfully altered and, in the aftermath of the Terri Schiavo case, the definition of death is constantly being critiqued. Philosophers through the millennia have mused long about the realities of life and death and I am certain the trend will continue for as long as people who live and die populate the planet.

Living For Jesus

The idea of living for Jesus or that "to live is Christ" is lost on me. We discussed what it means to live for Christ but I'm not exactly sure if we ever came up with a definitive answer. A typical answer would to live a good life, like I'm doing, but Sean seems to be against such an answer.

To Die Is Gain

I think about death a lot. I believe that I have struggled with depression for over 10 years and there have been plenty of times where I thought it would just be better for be to be dead. to be honest, I often want to just give up. I often do not want to be alive anymore.

Death After Life

What happens when you die? Is there such a thing as the afterlife? These are questions we have probably asked before or at the very least heard someone else ask. But I don't want to talk about life after death, I want to try to answer a question that Christians sometimes ignore: Is there death after life?

Do I Need a Substitute For My Life?

The Christian answer would be “yes.” My answer would be “no.” I think I handle things pretty well on my own without Jesus. Some people would say that I haven’t done it all on my own, that Jesus secretly helps me out, but I don’t believe that. I have done it all on my own without Jesus. If Jesus was helping me out along this journey called life, wouldn’t he want it to be known that he had helped me? Just a simple “Hey, that was me, see what you can do with my help?” The Christian response to that would be something about how Jesus isn’t going to come right out and say it. Well that’s dumb.

Being the Church: The Church as a Ministry Community

You may have seen the meme or heard some pastor give a rousing call-to-action for you to BE the CHURCH! Perhaps you have even stopped to ponder what being the church looks like and what exactly in entails. The only way for people to "be the church" is for a group of people to constantly be becoming a worshipping community that responds to the presence of God in every avenue of their life. This doesn't mean we (always) break out in church-music flashmobs, but it does mean that we are always striving to provide ministry to those who are in closest proximity to us at any given time.

The Rebellious Christian: Dealing With a Government You Don't Agree With

A servant is one who, either by force or by choice, stands in a constant submissive state to an authoritative power. A rebel is one who fights the power of the oppressive overlord in an attempt to either be free from restraint or to set up his own establishment of rule and reign. In the modern context these two words are diametrically opposed. They are separated in our thinking as much as any two words can be. Yet, the Christian lives centrally in the tension of being a submissive rebel. It is simply what it means to be a Christian. 

Rebel Without A Cause

What does it mean to be a Christian? That is the question we've been looking to answer over the last few weeks. Does it mean that they submit to authority? Does it mean that they rebel against it? I can find scriptures that support both of these, so does that mean this is a "grey area" where Christians can pick and choose when to submit and when to rebel?

I am a Bible Skeptic

In the beginning of my journey here at Empty Church I wrote a blog about blindly believing. This week we discussed if Christians should believe everything in the Bible or should they be a little doubtful or skeptical about some things? I think we all agreed that there is a healthy combination of belief and skepticism that goes along with believing in God and the bible if one is a Christian.

Childlike Faith And Growing Doubt

I remember the first time I asked a question about God that my mom couldn't answer. I asked where God came from. It was hard for my little six year old brain to comprehend that God has always been and will always be there. That while we are finite, He is infinite. Honestly, it's still hard for my 31 year old brain to comprehend. Still, even though I didn't understand how that could be possible, I never doubted that it was true.

How "Just Believe" Fails the Believer

R. Kelly, inspired by the legendary Michael Jordan, believed he could fly. He thought about it every night and day. But you know what? Spreading his wings never actually allowed him to fly away. Belief can only take you so far and it serves as a great starting point, but belief devoid of any intentional engagement has two possible outcomes: 1)It remains a fairytale or 2) It gets utterly destroyed the moment something "better" comes along. The matter of belief gets complicated when it is combined with religious ideas. You may have heard that all you need to do is believe in Jesus to be saved and while that is true, a faith that subsists of "just believing" can easily remain a fairy tale or worse. There is more to Christianity than a belief in an idea.