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Twilight Musings “Ambiguous Nakedness”
By Elton Higgs A few months ago (Musing 24), I alluded to the following poem:   “And they realized they were naked . . . .” (Gen. 3:7) What mystery was shrouded By the fig leaves of our forebears? Primordial tailors, Their hands’ first fallen craft Was born of shame, The name of sin but freshly formed. Why that immediate, desperate need To cover their ...

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Twilight Musings “There Ain’t Nothin’ Like Love”
By Elton Higgs  The title above reflects a sentiment that has for centuries been ubiquitously expressed in the popular songs and literature of Western societies.  But the “love” referred to is associated much more with Cupid than with God.  Love as the world defines it has to do overwhelmingly with the exhilarating whirlwinds of sexual attraction...

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Twilight Musings: “Sitting on the Bench”
By Elton Higgs Let’s consider the idea of God as Coach for a few minutes. A coach is a guide, a mentor, an encourager, a challenger, and an overall strategist for the team, all of which functions are characteristics of God in regard to the people on His “team.” For example, imagine an intense basketball game in which a player is thoroughly engaged and feels ...

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Mailbag: A Moral Argument from Evil?
Question: Hi, MA team: I’ve been working through an argument for God’s existence which takes as its starting point a conception of evil as wrongdoing or injustice. In other words, when we think about great evils, whether moral or natural, we tend to think of certain states of affairs that *ought not* obtain, or which depart from the way things sh...

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The Possibility of Virtue in Christianity and Buddhism (Part 3 of 5)
Part 1 Part 2 By Jonathan Pruitt The Case for Buddhist Virtue The first step in evaluating Buddhist ethics will be to understand the Buddhist worldview. Ethical systems are always intimately tied to a worldview, but this is especially the case for Buddhism. The Buddha’s teaching was in response to an ethical problem, the problem of suffering. Through much ef...

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Twilight Musings “The God Who Casts No Shadow”
By Elton Higgs  Have you ever put your fingers in front of a projector to create the shadow image of a rabbit or some other object? This old trick illustrates the three elements necessary to create a shadow: a source of light, an object that interrupts the projection of light, and a screen or background substance on which the shadow can be cast. The biggest ...

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Debate: Ron Smith and Matthew Flannagan “Morality Does Not Need God”
Matthew Flannagan, co-author of  Did God Really Command Genocide? (summarized here) and atheist moral philosopher Ron Smith, engage in a lively and thoughtful debate concerning theistic morality. Dr. Smith argues that theism is not necessary for morality; that it is incoherent and leads to atrocities. Dr. Flannagan defends divine command theory.  The debate ...

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The Possibility of Virtue in Christianity and Buddhism (Part 2 of 5)
By Jonathan Pruitt Part 1 The Foundations of Virtue Given the goals of this thesis, the first and most important task is to establish just what virtue ethics is and what it entails. A survey of the literature will show that the field of virtue ethics is both broad and deep. Its history extends back to the Homeric epics and into current, cutting-edge moral p...

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Welcome to the Sawdust Trail: Campmeetings and the Moral Argument
Dr. Baggett felt inspired to write this book about a Michigan campmeeting when his mom was sick and in the hospital in Lansing, Michigan about nine months before she died. As he walked the grounds at the Eaton Rapids Campground in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, thinking about her physical decline, he felt nostalgic thinking about his parents’ love of the place and ...

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Quote of the Month

“The symbol of a drama, a symphony, or a dance, is here useful to correct a certain absurdity which may arise if we talk too much of God planning and creating the world process for good and of that good being frustrated by the free will of the creatures. This may raise the ridiculous idea that the Fall took God by surprise and upset His plan, or else—more ridiculously still—that God planned the whole thing for conditions which, He well knew, were never going to be realized. In fact, of course, God saw the crucifixion in the act of creating the first nebula. The world is a dance in which good, descending from God, is disturbed by evil arising from the creatures, and the resulting conflict is resolved by God’s own assumption of the suffering nature which evil produces.”

C. S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain