Category Archives: Christianity

Process Crimes in Theological Conversation

There are few things in the world of politics that interest me but one thing that does are process crimes. Let’s say Senator Smith is being investigated for money laundering and tax evasion. They bring her in, put her under oath and ask her umpteen zillion questions. During the questioning she tells several lies and nothing else is found to believe she is guilty of the initial charges. But now they have her for perjury.

Process crimes are real crimes with real consequences.

I believe we have an issue with process crimes in our theological conversations. Someone may be 100% right in what they are saying but the way they are going about it is 100% wrong. They have come to a biblical conclusion but their process of communication and discussion isn’t biblical in the least.

If we are going to have a healthy conversation we not only need to seek the truth but we must converse in a way that also honors the scriptures (and there are many scriptures on how we are to treat each other and talk with one another). Being 100% right and being 100% wrong of a process crime in theological conversation is still 100% wrong.

What are process crimes in theological conversation? Here are a few examples. Feel free to add more in the comments.

  • Being mean spirited and/or hateful
  • Being manipulative
  • Misrepresenting another person or their views

If you have to result to these tactics it muddies up your view. No matter how valid your conclusions may be…no matter how accurately they represent the truth, these tactics build walls up against anyone who might have otherwise benefited from your view, much less the actual scriptures themselves. The truth doesn’t need your assistance. As tempting as it is to “win” an argument no matter what it takes, it doesn’t do the truth any good for us to try to lend a helping hand by lending a heavy hand. You cannot both uphold the truth of the scriptures while being dishonest in your approach.

I think part of our reasoning for this is because we feel anxious if people don’t agree with us. It is like we are “less than” when someone disagrees. We take it too personally as if it even matters. So we fight to win and to appease our own sense and inner feelings of inadequacy and insecurity. Once we have “won” the debate we feel secure against because everyone knows we are right. Instead we need to focus on issues not people and the truth over personality conflicts. That allows us to assess and discuss issues without feeling anxiety and without being reactionary in the way we handle ourselves in conversation.

A New Year’s Resolution I Promise You Can Keep

Here it is – Fail at something. I don’t mean fail because you didn’t try. That isn’t failing. That is laziness. I mean fail because you tried something daring. Fail because you stepped out beyond your comfort zone. Fail because you stretched to be closer to your capacity. If you don’t fail at anything thisContinue Reading

Repeal and Replace

There is a law at work in our minds that must be repealed and replaced. It is a law that doesn’t have our best interest at heart. It is the law of sin that enslaves us to the desires of our flesh. Here is how Paul described it, “21┬áSo I find this law at work:Continue Reading

Operating Out of Conviction

Conviction is a word that I don’t hear very often. I think it is underused. The Bible talks about conviction in a few places including the famous chapter on faith in Hebrews 11, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” If we are to operate out ofContinue Reading

Ministers’ Health in Churches of Christ – Some New Statistics to Consider

I recently ran a survey of Church of Christ ministers to assess their health and self-care. I am going to be presenting a very small portion of that information at the Pepperdine lectures next week. There were a lot of things in the data that were encouraging and some things that scream just how muchContinue Reading

Playing Chess With God

Sometimes life feels like playing chess with God. I am sitting on one side of the table trying to play both hands. Seated across from the Creator of the universe I strategize…figuring out what my next moves are going to be while also attempting to determine what God’s next moves are going to be AtContinue Reading

The Obedience/Evangelism Disconnect

If our salvation were to be contingent upon getting every jot and tittle just so then would one be lost if they disobeyed the Great commission? Technically the Greek there isn’t an imperative but over and over again we understand the Christian mission to be one of going and telling. There is no more importantContinue Reading

Our Need for a Biblical View of the Holy Spirit: 4 Reasons We Neglect the Spirit

Can you imagine neglecting Jesus or the Father in your teaching or preaching? Imagine a church that never said a word about either the Father or the Son. Would you want to be a part of a church that never brought them up? Why is it that we rarely talk about the Spirit of God?Continue Reading

Developing Ears to Hear the Word & Voice of the Lord

On several occasions Jesus finished his teaching telling those who heard him that if they had the ears to hear they needed to listen (Mark 4:9, 13 & 8:18). Jesus taught in such a creative way that he not only kept your attention…he left you with more questions than you had answers. In doing so,Continue Reading

The Spiritual Physical – Tuning Our Eyes and Ears to See & Hear Holistically

There is an idea out there that there are physical, temporary things and there are spiritual, eternal things. The reality is the distinction is not so distinct. The spiritual permeates everything. This is something that is not always readily apparent but it can become apparent to the person who wants to see it. The typeContinue Reading


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