Being “Nicea” And Leaving Church

Two recent podcast episodes that I found helpful on two topics about which I’ve been giving some thought: millennials and niceness. The first is Theology You Should Know with my friends Jared Beaird and Dan Borvan. Both have written for the HB. . . . Continue reading →

It All Comes Down To Aesthetics

It is interesting that the crisis finally came only when the aesthetics flipped the other way, when Driscoll and his antics became more distasteful than the words of his critics. It is important to notice that it was not the embrace of . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 92: Of Nice And Men (1)


With this episode we begin a new series: Of Nice And Men. The argument, the thesis, of the series is that niceness is one thing and Christian virtue is another. Niceness is a pervasive ethos among evangelicals. The dictionary defines ethos as the a spirit . . . Continue reading →

The Zeitgeist

They’ll tell you it’s wrong in private, but in public they felt they had to go along…. —Bill Kristol

Truth Offends Narcissists

Truth as a proposition is found to be offensive by what it implies. That is, if the proposition is correct I must be wrong, ergo you are judging me. Or, if we are passionate about the truth the response is normally, ‘why . . . Continue reading →

When The “Tone Police” Appear

One of the unfortunate features of the current Trinity debate is the moaning over “tone.” Such a complaint fails in at least two ways. First it fails in not affording proper weight to the content of the debate. In generations past men . . . Continue reading →

Of Nice And Men

In a recent foreword to a book advocating Norman Shepherd’s peculiar brand of covenant theology, John Frame attacks some of Shepherd’s critics as “stupid, irresponsible and divisive.” Apparently, someone complained about Frame’s lack of civility so he issued an apology that the . . . Continue reading →

Swain: Niceness Is Counterfeit Meekness

“Niceness” is a counterfeit of meekness or gentleness. The nice person always compliments, never disagrees because he is unwilling to risk his reputation for the sake of the good by opposing with anger what is evil. Scott Swain

Machen Was Not Nice

But these physical hardships were not the chief battle in which Paul was engaged. Far more trying was the battle that he fought against the enemies in his own camp. Everywhere his rear was threatened by an all-engulfing paganism or by a . . . Continue reading →

What Madness Is This?

What madness is this? What unholy and devilishly complex word could contain such a multitude of meaning? Merriam-Webster, “Words at Play” on the etymology, history, and meanings of “nice.”

Of Luther, Limbaugh, And Losers (Relax, It’s A Joke)

On this date in 1546 Martin Luther went to be with our Savior, Jesus. Yesterday, Rush Limbaugh died and we hope that he too was received into the loving arms of the Savior. Both men were in desperate need of the unconditional . . . Continue reading →

On The Limits Of Winsomeness

And I started to recognize another danger to this approach: If we assume that winsomeness will gain a favorable hearing, when Christians consistently receive heated pushback, we will be tempted to think our convictions are the problem. If winsomeness is met with . . . Continue reading →

How Did Christians Speak In Public?

I do not follow Australian rules football, the career of Australian pastor Guy Mason, or that of television presenter Ryan Kochie but, a month ago, they collided on Australian television. Andrew Thorburn is a banker who has a lay leadership role in . . . Continue reading →