Hospitality Isn’t Hard

dinner-party-big-image

by John Ellis

It’s not a humble-brag to say that people frequently express amazement at how often my wife and I host large groups of people at our house. It’s not a humble-brag because my wife and I are puzzled by the amazement. We love having people over; we love large groups hanging around until the late hours of night talking and laughing. If anything, it would be an amazing and pointless act of self-sacrifice for my me and my wife to not frequently host large groups of people at our house. Hospitality is not a chore for us, by any stretch of the imagination. And, frankly, hospitality doesn’t need to be a chore for most people.

Continue reading

The Church Is Filled With Hypocrites … and Other Reasons to Skip Church

church building

by John Ellis

Is it necessary for Christians to attend church? Well, first off, if you understand who/what the Church is, the question is nonsensical. The Church is the Bride of Christ; God’s people being reconstituted into a new Kingdom. For a professing Christian to distant himself from the Church is, in essence, a renunciation of Christianity. You can’t be a Christian and not be a member of the Body of Christ – the Church.

Continue reading

Date Night: The Joshua Tree Live

the joshua tree

by John Ellis

This evening, U2 stops in Washington DC on the band’s The Joshua Tree tour. Released thirty years ago, en route to selling over 25 million copies, The Joshua Tree propelled U2 to superstar status. Containing the singles “With or Without You,” “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,” and “Where the Streets Have No Name,”[1] The Joshua Tree is one of the greatest albums in rock history. Depending on the day, it’s also my favorite album of all time; it’s biggest competition being Achtung Baby, another U2 album. In fact, when asked, I usually name U2 as my favorite band of all time. All that combined has left me as giddily excited as a ten-year-old on Christmas Eve as I impatiently count down the remaining hours before tonight’s concert.

Continue reading

A Christian Defense of Capitalism

capitalismby John Ellis

It’s only been seven years since I embraced the truth that capitalism is the economic system that best provides society with the chance to obey the Bible’s commands to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and care for the oppressed. If you’re doing the math, and you know my age (41), that’s a mere 17% of my life. The rest of the time, I was either a child, a burgeoning Marxist, an actual Marxist, or a increasingly skeptical socialist (increasingly skeptical of socialism, that is). My journey to believing that the free market is the best economic system lagged a bit behind my journey from leftist social politics to Biblical social politics (you can read about some of that journey by clicking here).

Continue reading

The Persecution of Christians in America

persecuted-christians-copy-748x460

by John Ellis

When we apply the word “persecution” to ourselves, Christians in the West are often scoffed at by those on the left. Progressives, including progressive “Christians,” retort that we don’t understand what the word “persecution” means and that we’re simply afraid of losing our privilege. When confronted with that challenge, many Christians are at a loss at how to adequately unpack it. It is true that the vast majority of us do not face what our brothers and sisters in Christ face in Iran, for example. We are not being jailed, beaten, and even killed. However, persecution does not have to rise to the level of martyrdom to be counted as persecution. Overall, the deflection by liberals is a shell-game.

Continue reading

Liberal Theology and the Decline of the PCUSA

abandonded church

by John Ellis

Several months ago, my pastor and I attended a lecture at a local Unitarian church (I wrote about that lecture here). Before the lecture began, a gentleman from the church gave some opening remarks. In those remarks, he bemoaned the shrinking membership of the Unitarian denomination. He also smugly criticized conservative, “white” churches for their lack of diversity. My pastor and I looked at each other quizzically. As we walked back to our cars after the lecture was over, my pastor asked me, “Were you thinking what I was thinking?” I replied, “Yes.”

Continue reading

Abortion IS Murder

abortion sign

by John Ellis

Last night while at a party, I had the privilege of listening to a friend from church talk very briefly about her labors on the Hill to protect the lives of the unborn. Our church is blessed to have several people who are actively involved in combating our society’s horrific holocaust of babies. One young lady is the director of a crisis pregnancy center that offers free medical care to poor mothers and undocumented immigrant mothers. One would think that liberal-leaning professing Christians would applaud her work to care for mothers who are often alone and who are struggling emotionally, materially, and spiritually. But, no, progressive Christians offer some of the sharpest rebukes and attacks on her labors.

Continue reading