Russell D. Moore

Christian Post Guest Columnist

Racial Justice and the Godness of God

I love that picture because it sums up precisely the issue at that time, and at every time. The struggle for civil rights for African-Americans in this country wasn't simply a "political" question. It wasn't merely the question of, as Martin Luther King Jr. puts it from before the Lincoln Memorial, the unfulfilled promises of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution (although it was nothing less than that).

What Willie Nelson Can Teach Us About Divorce

Willie Nelson, the legendary country musician, has framed himself as an "outlaw." He flaunted the conventional norms of the Nashville music industry, and even, legend says, smoked marijuana in the Carter White House. He's less of an outlaw, though, when he talks about the sadness of his failed marriages. There's something in the way he speaks about divorce that I think resonates across culture today, something we need to hear.

How Should You Explain the Same-Sex Marriage Debate to Your Children?

With the recent Supreme Court decisions all over the news, some Christian parents wonder how they ought to explain all of this to their small children. I've faced the same question as my children have asked, "What is the Supreme Court doing that's keeping you so busy?" So how does one teach the controversy, without exposing one's children to more than they can handle?

How Should Same-Sex Marriage Change the Church's Witness?

The Supreme Court has now ruled on two monumental marriage cases, and the legal and cultural landscape has changed in this country. The court voted to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act and remand the decision of the Ninth Circuit in the Proposition 8 case, holding that California's Proposition 8 defenders didn't have standing. The Defense of Marriage Act decision used rather sweeping language about equal protection and human dignity as they apply to the recognition of same-sex unions. But what has changed for us, for our churches, and our witness to the gospel?

On Mother's Day, Remember the Infertile

Mother's Day is a particularly sensitive time in many congregations, and pastors and church leaders often don't even know it. This is true even in congregations that don't focus the entire service around the event as if it were a feast day on the church's liturgical calendar. Infertile women, and often their husbands, are still often grieving in the shadows.

Kermit Gosnell and the Gospel

Yesterday I was typing the name "Kermit Gosnell," and my phone auto-corrected the name to "gospel." I shuddered momentarily. After all, what could be more contradictory than the name of a notorious abortionist on trial for child murder, and the good news of the mercies of God in Christ. My smartphone, it turns out, was smarter than I was.

Should Christians Boycott Starbucks?

A respected pro-family organization announced this week a boycott of Starbucks coffee. The group, which supports legal protection for traditional marriage, launched the "Dump Starbucks" campaign after a national board meeting in which the Seattle-based coffee company mentioned support for same-sex marriage as a core value of the company. Some Christians are wondering whether we ought to join in the boycott. I say no.

Why the Afterlife Bores Us

I have long suspected that many Christians dread not just death but heaven. We won't admit that, of course. Our hymnody, of whatever era, is filled with songs about the joy of the afterlife, and "what a day of rejoicing that will be."

An Evangelical Looks at Pope Benedict XVI

With Pope Benedict XVI's shocking resignation this morning, evangelical Christians might be tempted to see this the way a college football fan might view the departure of his rival team's head coach. But the global stakes are much, much higher. As Pope Benedict steps down, I think it's important for us to recognize the legacy of the last two bishops of Rome that we ought to honor and conserve: an emphasis on human dignity.

Louie Giglio and the New State Church

As citizens, we ought to insist that the President stand up to his "base" and articulate a vision of a healthy pluralism in the public square. Notice that the problem is not that this evangelical wants to "impose his religion" on the rest of society. The problem is not that he wants to exclude homosexuals or others from the public square or of their civil rights. The problem is that he won't say that they can go to heaven without repentance. That's not a civil issue, but a religious test of orthodoxy.

Is the Pro-Life Cause Winning?

TIME magazine's recent cover story announces that, forty years after Roe, the pro-life side is winning the abortion debate. I say, "Not so fast." Yes, it's a win just that the concept of "pro-life" is still alive. The abortion rights movement probably assumed that forty years after the Supreme Court legalized abortion that the issue would be as settled as school integration or women's suffrage.

Premarital Sex?

Christians talk a lot about premarital sex. And I think that's a mistake. I don't think it's a mistake because the issue is unimportant but because the grammar is skewed. The word "fornication" is almost gone from contemporary Christian speech. It sounds creepy and antiquated. Instead, we talk about "abstinence" and "premarital sex."

Let's Rethink Our Holly-Jolly Christmas Songs

I overheard a man explain why he hated Christmas music. "Christmas is boring because there's no narrative tension," he said. "It's like reading a book with no conflict." Some of the blame is on our sentimentalized Christmas of the American civil religion.

Is the Culture at War With Christmas?

Every year about this time, there's a lot of hubbub about a so-called "war on Christmas." We ought not to get outraged by all that, as though we were some protected class of victims. We ought to instead see the ways that our culture is less and less connected with the roots of basic knowledge about Christianity.

Halloween and Evangelical Identity

The words "evangelical" and "fundamentalist" have very little meaning. "Evangelical" includes, for some people, everyone from J.I. Packer to T.D. Jakes to Brian McLaren. I tried my hand at explaining the spectrum, with tongue in cheek. A conservative evangelical is a fundamentalist whose kids dress up for the church's "Fall Festival."

Can I Be a Christian and a Divorce Lawyer?

I have a church member, a devoted Christian, who is an attorney specializing in divorce cases. Our church believes that divorce is (in almost every case) sin. If so, isn't he empowering sin? Should I counsel him to follow Christ by walking away from this job and to do something else?

Farewell to the American Protestant Majority

According to a new study by the Pew Forum, Protestants are, for the first time in history, not a majority in the United States of America. I don't think that's anything for evangelical Protestants, or anyone else, to panic about. Frankly, we should be more concerned about the loss of a Christian majority in the Protestant churches than about the loss of a Protestant majority in the United States.

How Church Discipline Can Be Like Doctor Shopping

Law enforcement officials use the term "doctor shopping" to refer to the way those addicted to prescription pain medications seek to avert accountability. I've noticed the same thing going on when it comes to church accountability. The truth is, there's a certain type of personality that doesn't want accountability, but affirmation.

Is Tim Tebow a Chauvinist?

Tim Tebow says he wants a wife with "a servant's heart." Does that make him a misogynist? Jezebel, a feminist website, picked up on comments Tebow made in an interview with Vogue magazine, in which he said he wanted a wife who lived up to the high standards set for him by his mother and sisters.

Should Christians Adopt Embryos?

An "embryo" isn't a thing; he or she is a "who." These so-called "snowflakes" are brothers and sisters of the Lord Jesus and are stored in cryogenic containers in fertility clinics as the "extras" of IVF projects. They already exist, and they already exist as persons created in the image of God. And there are Christians called to adopt them, to bring them to birth through pregnancy, and to raise them in love.

How Christians Should Engage Latter-day Saints

Christians often wonder why Mormons believe such an incredible system: golden tablets translated with "magic glasses," an advanced society of ancient American Indian Israelites who left behind no archaeological evidence at all, an eternity of godhood producing spirit babies, and special protective underwear. What we must understand is that Latter-day Saints believe these things for the same reason that people everywhere believe the things they do: they want to believe them.