Michael Craven

Michael Craven

God as Father

Anyone who has been a Christian for almost any length of time understands God as “our Father.” Having received salvation at the age of twenty-one, I, too, understood the concept of God as Father but it wasn’t until last year—at the age of fifty-two—that I truly began to understand the fatherhood of God beyond the abstract.

How Institutionalism Breeds Division

Christians have throughout the centuries—and most especially following the Protestant Reformation—arrived at very different understandings about a multitude of issues related to the teaching and practice of the Christian faith. Unfortunately, we tend to form enclaves around these doctrinal understandings, which are eventually institutionalized.

What is Institutionalism and How does it Affect the Church?

Prior to Constantine, the church, although organized, was less institutional and more communal or organic. In other words, the outside world didn’t think of “the church” as that building on the corner. Instead they thought of a community of people who were distinct in both their conduct and character, the overarching characteristics being their love for others, compassion toward the needy, and joy-filled lives.

Sandy Hook Elementary: Searching for Answers

The brutal and senseless murder of twenty-seven people—including twenty children—at Sandy Hook Elementary has left the nation once again stunned and looking for answers. Beyond the obvious element of evil, we are all wondering, “What can possibly motivate someone to commit these heinous acts of violence?” “Why are such scenes becoming more and more frequent?” And, “What is the cause?”

Spending This Christmas or Spending It Well?

This Christmas do not be swept away by the illusory claims of consumerism; instead, revel in God’s gracious gifts, drink deeply the joy of relationships and life and the wonder of this wonderful season—these will leave you truly satisfied and debt free!

To Which Voice Are You Listening? – Part II

One of the ways we can determine whether or not we are listening to the voice of God versus that other voice is to examine the four foundational relationships in our lives that the gospel is redeeming: our relationship with God, ourselves, others, and creation.

The Latest Pew Survey: Christianity Losing, Secularism Winning

This is clearly the implication of the media reports following the latest Pew Research, “Nones on the Rise,” which shows a “steep decline” in the number of Protestants. Trying to spin this in such a way that the Christian faith appears culturally vital is a little like putting lipstick on a pig; but concluding that Christianity is losing and secularism is winning isn’t quite accurate either.