Social Constructionism (2)

By Rick Mingerink - Posted at the Reformed Free Publishing Association:

Last time we defined social constructionism and showed that it falls into the category of postmodernism. Our goal with this series is to understand the layers of social constructionism so that we might be aware of its dangers as Reformed Christians. To peel away the first layer of the social constructionist onion, let’s begin by understanding our place in history.

Throughout the history of the world there have been great time periods which are marked by common and stable characteristics. Historians have recognized this and have given names to these great bands of time to help us understand the vast and complex flow of human history. The Iron Age comes to mind, and the Classical Age, the Renaissance, and the Industrial Revolution. These are just to name just a few. This is called the periodization of history.

Sometimes we recognize these patches of history by the spirit of prevailing philosophies which characterize th…

Report: School-Issued Devices Spying on Kids

By Shane Vander Hart - Posted at Truth in American Education:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation released a report in April that is a must read for those who are concerned about student privacy. In a nutshell, they found these devices are spying on kids who use them, and their parents are blissfully unaware.

From the report‘s executive summary:

Student laptops and educational services are often available for a steeply reduced price, and are sometimes even free. However, they come with real costs and unresolved ethical questions thrroughout EFF’s investigation over the past two years, we have found that educational technology services often collect far more information on kids than is necessary and store this information indefinitely. This privacy-implicating information goes beyond personally identifying information (PII) like name and date of birth, and can include browsing history, search terms, location data, contact lists, and behavioral information. Some programs upload this stude…

The Groanings of this Present Age

By Mark Johnston - Posted at the Place for Truth:

As I write, the United Kingdom is still reeling from the latest terrorist atrocity to be unleashed in one of our major cities. It was particularly horrific in that it was deliberately targeted at children and teenagers attending a pop concert. The grief of those affected has been broadcast widely and it is impossible not to be deeply touched by their anguish – anguish repeatedly expressed in gut-wrenching groans. No matter how much the media and its pundits try to make sense of what has happened, words are inadequate to plumb the depths of pain.

Tragically, there is nothing new in this. This same week saw another terrorist incident – one that took place 41 years ago in Ireland – back in the headlines. Four decades on and no one charged for the offence and the surviving members of the victims’ families still expressing the raw pain of the loss they have lived with all that time. All this but another symptom of what C.S. Lewis aptly call…

TX governor signs bill to 'shield' pastors' sermons

By Bonnie Pritchett - Posted at Baptist Press:

Senate Bill 24, authored by Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, protects clergy from government overreach in civil investigations. No governmental agency can force religious leaders to turn over their sermons or compel clergy to testify about their sermons according to the bill.
AUSTIN (BP) -- Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed legislation Sunday (May 21) that prohibits Texas government agencies from subpoenaing the sermons of religious leaders.

In a ceremony choreographed to highlight the bill's benefactors Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick signed the bill surrounded by Houston area clergy during the May 21 worship service at Grace Church, Woodlands, Texas.

Four of the five Houston pastors whose sermons became the target of a sweeping 2014 subpoena "fishing expedition" by City of Houston attorneys and then-Mayor Annise Parker joined the signing ceremony. In messages emphasizing spiritual and political courage, Abbott and Patrick also…

ChinaAid: Tortured legal assistant breaks silence on human rights crackdown

(Beijing—May 23, 2017) The youngest legal assistant arrested as part of a nationwide crackdown on human rights recently broke her silence to write an emotional letter to colleagues imprisoned with her, describing the enormous burden of the torture they endured and inviting them to join with her to end China’s abuses.

In the letter, Zhao Wei, a 26-year-old legal assistant arrested connection with the human rights crackdown known as the 709 case, describes her struggle to break through the fear and torture that defined her imprisonment in order to take her first steps into speaking out against injustice. She notes the resilient love of her parents, which prompted them to travel the nation to free her, explains her inability to win the fight for China’s freedom on her own, and encourages the activists who underwent similar experiences to stand with her.
Read more here.

A Personal Testimony Regarding Volunteering and Working at VOM

Posted at ThouArtTheMan:

Janna Chan at the ThouArtTheMan blog stated that they would like to hear my story concerning the bizarre behavior of management at Voice of the Martyrs USA and how I was excommunicated for trying to simply do my job well. So here it is, I write it down almost 15 years after my relationship ended with them.

I have followed the controversy closely based on my experience. I know who went to the police and who Tom White’s victim is. The father I run into on a pretty regular basis. So here it is in all the details. To be honest I am an introvert who would, in my flesh, prefer to stay out of the limelight. However, my conscience drives me to take a stand where I see evil inside the Church.

The story starts in the mid 90’s when my best friend introduces me to the “ministry” by giving me a fundraising mailer that he had received. I trust his judgment and my heartstrings are pulled by the heartbreaking stories I read about inside. I start donating to them regula…

The Marks of a Cult: A Biblical Analysis with Eric Holmberg


Published on Nov 24, 2013
This program is available on DVD here:

A fascinating analysis examining the core of Christian orthodoxy; where denominations within the true Church ends...and a cult begins.

"Once again, The Apologetics Group has developed a scholarly presentation addressing a vital current issue. This new production not only deals with how to identify The Marks of a Cult, but in its own right is a type of "mini-systematic theology" that will greatly benefit any individual or church group. I highly recommend it for a better understanding of cult beliefs and practice, as well as, developing your understanding of historic Christian theology." Dr. Kenneth G. Talbot -- President, Whitefield Theological Seminary

In today's religiously diverse and relativistic culture, labeling a group a cult may seem extreme to many people, not to mention rude. Even people who believe in absolute Truth and further believe that Jesus is the on…

This Week in History: The Philadelphia Convention Begins

By Dave Benner - Posted at the Tenth Amendment Center:

When delegates gathered in Philadelphia 230 years ago this week to consider changes to the structure of the general government, many prominent delegates brought plans to create a much stronger central authority, shifting power away from the states. However the Constitution that actually came out of that convention established a limited general government with power remaining primarily in the states.
On May 14, 1787, delegates from the several states convened in Philadelphia, forming a convention with the initial aim of proposing amendments to the Articles of Confederation. Over the course of the next four months, they formulated a model for a new general government which would require the positive ratification of nine states. According to Article VII, it was a compact between states “so ratifying the Same.”
James Madison and Edmund Randolph went to the Philadelphia Convention advocating for a “National Legislature” with a general le…

Social Constructionism

By Rick Mingerink - Posted at the Reformed Free Publishing Association blog:

Over the next couple posts, I will be treating the subject of social constructionism. This may seem like a strange topic, hardly worth knowing. Although the term itself isn’t part of most people’s daily speech, its influence can be seen all over. If you bear with me over the next couple posts, you will find social constructionism is something you will want to know more about.

I first learned about this subject during my graduate studies at Calvin College. It was new to me, but it helped me understand why the world is consistently moving toward a progressive, non-traditional worldview. Have you ever wondered how two people living in the same country, maybe even on the same street, can have such radically different views on marriage or homosexuality and both passionately claim they are right? Or how there can be such polarization between the left and the right? The differences in worldview and ideology are so d…

Planned Parenthood to Close Its Only Wyoming Location for Financial Reasons

By Heather Clark - Posted at Christian News Network:

CASPER, Wy. — The abortion and contraception giant Planned Parenthood will close its only Wyoming location in July for financial reasons.

“We looked at what services we provided,” Adrienne Mansanares of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains told the Star Tribune this week. “We also looked at the financial health of the health center.”

She explained that most women obtaining services were going to the Fort Collins, Colorado location. The Casper location saw an estimated 500 women a year. It offered contraception, testing for sexually transmitted diseases and abortion referrals.

Spokeswoman Whitney Phillips said that Planned Parenthood will now refer women to area community health centers, which accept walk-ins and Medicaid.
Read more here.