#45— How (Not) to Be Secular, with James K. A. Smith [MIPodcast]

Why was it virtually impossible not to believe in God in, say, 1500 in our Western society, while in 2016 many people find it more difficult to believe than not? This is the question that Charles Taylor tackles in his massive book A Secular Age. In this episode, James K. A. Smith joins us to talk […]

Read More

#44—Kate Bowler’s history of the prosperity gospel movement [MIPodcast]

Even if you’ve never heard of a Christian movement scholars call “the prosperity gospel,” chances are you know some of its most famous proponents, like Joel Osteen or Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker. “The prosperity gospel” is not officially associated with any particular denomination. It’s more a style of Christianity, one that emphasizes God’s desire to […]

Read More

#43—The life of C. S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity, with George Marsden [MIPodcast]

C. S. Lewis died in 1963 on the same day John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Before the decade was over, few expected his works to last. “We think Lewis’ star has risen and is about to set,” said one Catholic publisher. “His day is over. No one will be reading C. S. Lewis twenty years from now.” Even […]

Read More

#42—The rabbis and the rain, with Julia Watts Belser [MIPodcast]

In the land of Israel, rain falls during a single, crucial, season of the year beginning in October or November and continuing through the spring. Lives depended on successful harvests which depended on healthy rainfall. According to the Hebrew scriptures, weather proved God’s blessing or cursing the people of Israel:

“From the rain of the heavens, you will drink water—
a land that the Lord your God seeks out perpetually;
the eyes of the Lord your God are upon it” […]

Read More