Worth Reading - 2/4

For me, it’s when I cry.

When I start to tear up, I know the moment I’m in with one of my children is hugely important in their theological education. This is because I am most likely to shed tears in three different situations: when they’ve sinned, I’ve sinned, or we’re facing a tragedy.

It is in those three types of moments that you and I need to be most mindful of the theology we are teaching our children, be it intentional or not. As I’ve said before, I think we make the theological education of our kids harder than it needs to be, but that does not negate the importance of it, especially in these pivotal moments.

The three most important times to teach theology to your kids is when they mess up, when you mess up, and when the world is messed up.

2. The problem of turning inward. A look at why Dutch Reformed Christianity hasn't grown, despite a mandate to take the gospel to "every square inch"

A religious community focused only on its own survival in a hostile environment may already have lost the battle, and this is where the efforts of Kuyper’s followers perhaps fell short. If we genuinely believe that the redemptive story contained in the Bible is not just our story but the world’s story, then we have reason, not to keep it to ourselves, but to proclaim that news with urgency and enthusiasm and to live accordingly. A political ceasefire may serve the proximate good of intercommunal peace, but it can never be a substitute for the biblical command to preach the Gospel to the world, whose salvation ultimately depends on it. Different confessional groups may agree to disagree for the present, but the followers of Jesus Christ must manifest a confidence that the truth that sets us free is everyone’s truth, and not just a subjective truth peculiar to our own community. We should, in short, not be content to turn inward defensively but ought always to reach out to the larger world. If we lose confidence in the transforming power of the Gospel, we run the risk of losing ground in a conflict we may forget is still being waged, even under formal conditions of a political ceasefire.

3. An article from the Economist on why sometimes sports teams have perverse incentives to lose:

DANNY BLANCHFLOWER, the eloquent captain of the all-conquering Tottenham Hotspur side of 1961, famously remarked that “the great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory.” He was probably wrong: at least when it comes to the boardroom, the game is first and last about money.

4. Voices from the left side of American politics often complain about "Big Oil" and other political interests contributing to political causes. Notably, this is only when the contributions are not in their favor. There is some evidence that outside interests are playing into the political left's war on fossil fuels:

The Environmental Policy Alliance, a Washington-based group that researches funding and agendas of environmental activist groups, reports that “one of the founders of Marcuard is also the chair of Russian-owned giant Rosneft.” Not only is Rosneft a “giant,” it also is the world’s largest oil company. Rosneft, readers will recall, benefited greatly from the Russian government’s auctioning of the privately owned Yukos oil company after Yukos’ billionaire owner Mikhail Khodorkovsky was arrested and placed in a Russian prison for 10 years. The chairman of Rosneft’s audit committee is Hans Jorg Rudloff, the aforementioned founder of Marcuard who also serves as its director and president. Additionally, Marcuard’s website lists Hoskins as a director and vice president.

5. More money for public education is no more than part of the solution. In fact, it may not be the biggest part of the solution.