Halloween Versus Reformation Day: To Trick-or-Treat or Not to Trick-or-Treat?

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by John Ellis

Tomorrow is October 31, generally called either Halloween or Reformation Day. And, sadly, it’s one of the more divisive days of the year among followers of Jesus. Many have entrenched positions about the day over which they are willing to do battle on social media. Guilt is heaped. Eyes are rolled. Minor fallacies are flung near and far. Egos are bruised. On both sides, self-righteousness threatens to raise its ugly, unfruitful, and divisive head.

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A Christian Theatre Manifesto Part 1


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by John Ellis

Earlier this week, I wrote an article for PJ Media about the Erwin brother’s latest project called Kingdom, a collaborative Christian filmmaking company. If you’re unfamiliar with Andy and Jon Erwin, they’re the creative force behind the movies Woodlawn, Mom’s Night Out, October Baby, and this past year’s smash hit I Can Only Imagine which grossed almost $90 million at the box office against a budget of only $7 million.

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The Personhood Argument for Abortion


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by John Ellis

With the advances in ultrasound technology, especially the development of 3D ultrasound, pro-abortion advocates have changed tactics. It’s become next to impossible to convince people that a fetus isn’t a human life. For many who are pro-abortion, the argument now centers on personhood. Building on Judith Jarvis Thomson’s landmark paper “A Defense of Abortion,” the argument states that a fetus’ right to life is subservient to a woman’s right to choose.

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We Are All Atheists

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by John Ellis

“Even the Bible says that there isn’t a God,” my roommate smugly blustered.

The girl he was arguing with was incredulous, but as she pushed back it became obvious that a lack of confidence in her own position was growing. My roommate picked up on that, and went in for the dialectical kill, proud that he was about to convert another soul to atheism.

“It’s in one of the Psalms,” he shrugged. “I’m not making it up. The Bible says that there is no God.”

Gesturing towards me, he added, “Ask him.”

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Weekend Reading: 10/6

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by John Ellis

This past week has been dominated by news and stories about Brett Kavanaugh. If you’re like me, you’re tired of reading about it. In fact, I strongly considered muting on Twitter any words associated with the Kavanaugh hearings, allegations, and investigations. I didn’t, of course; as a writer, I kind of can’t. Thankfully, there were interesting articles published this week that had little to nothing to do with Kavanaugh. Below are some of the articles I found the most interesting and/or edifying from this past week.

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#BelieveWomen Versus the Presumption of Innocence


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by John Ellis

You shall not pervert justice. You shall not show partiality, and you shall not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and subverts the cause of the righteous. Justice, and only justice, you shall follow, that you may live and inherit the land that the Lord you God is giving you. Deuteronomy 16:19-20

During a test over the state capitals, my fourth-grade teacher accused me of cheating. Walking around the classroom, she noticed a piece of paper sticking out of my crowded, disorganized desk. That paper happened to be a previously taken quiz over the state capitals. While my classmates left for music class, the teacher held me behind.

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Christian Liberty: Christians and the Use of Recreational Marijuana


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by John Ellis

Does the recreational use of marijuana fall under Christian liberty?

That’s a question that’s being asked with increased frequency, and a question that will most likely cease to be abstract for churches in the near future. Jeff Sessions isn’t going to be Attorney General forever. Once he’s gone, the winds appear to be blowin’ strongly in the direction of the federal government’s legalization of the recreational use of marijuana. At that point, the above question will no longer be able to be placed under the interpretive authority of Romans 13:1.

So, what is the answer to the above question if and when the government’s prohibition of the recreational use of marijuana is lifted?

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