Word&Way News: Dec. 2
Here’s the weekly roundup from Word&Way. In addition to a satirical look at Christian Nationalist products that is free for anyone to read, paid subscribers to A Public Witness received a call to confront antisemitism in light of a dinner between Donald Trump, Nick Fuentes, and Kanye West.
Support our journalism ministry by upgrading to a paid e-newsletter subscription today!
Top 5 at wordandway.org
HLGU’s Accreditation Placed on Two-Year Probation. Brian Kaylor reported on the latest developments at Hannibal-LaGrange University.
Meet Elisabeth, Forgotten Prophet of the Christmas Story. Christine Trotter explored part of the Christmas story that is often overlooked: Elisabeth speaks prophetically to Mary and informs her that she is pregnant with the Lord.
There’s Something About Mary (Magdalene). Juliet Vedral spoke with Elizabeth Tabish, an actress from the television show The Chosen, and made the case that the life and faithfulness of Mary Magdalene are a witness in this Advent season.
Review: You Never Step Into the Same Pulpit Twice. Robert D. Cornwall reviewed You Never Step into the Same Pulpit Twice: Preaching from a Perspective of Process Theology by Ronald J. Allen.
SBC President Bart Barber Says Predecessor Johnny Hunt is Unfit to Return to Ministry. Bob Smietana reported on the controversy surrounding a former Southern Baptist leader after allegations of sexual assault.
Our Advent series started this week, with devotionals by Brian Kaylor, Rob Schenck, Andre Khudyakov, Rose Marie Berger, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, and Elijah Brown. You can sign up to receive the rest of the daily devotionals each morning in your inbox.
This week: Dave Verhaagen on How White Evangelicals Think
Other noteworthy podcasts this week:
Brian Kaylor appeared on the show You Have Permission to talk about the religious rhetoric of politicians.
On Respecting Religion, Amanda Tyler and Holly Hollman explained the religious liberty issues involved with the Respect for Marriage Act.
by Brian Kaylor, Word&Way Editor-in-Chief
On Thursday (Dec. 1), singer Kanye “Ye” West joined White nationalist activist Nick Fuentes on Info Wars with host Alex Jones for a gathering even more controversial than when West and Fuentes dined recently with former President Donald Trump. During the program, West said he “likes Hitler,” defended the Nazis, and made antisemitic jokes. And he did it all with a Bible.
In between making antisemitic statements during the live program, West lead the group in prayer. He also talked about Jesus while attacking Jews, following his pattern of mixing Christianity with bigotry.
Additionally, West brought a Bible and placed it on the desk in front of him as he spewed hatred. At times, he flipped through the text while others talked, he pointed to the Bible while encouraging viewers to study it, and he even read a few verses during the program.
The Bible that West brought as a prop for his antisemitic appeals appeared to be a New King James Version Bible published by Thomas Nelson. That raises an important question: Will Thomas Nelson condemn the use of their Bible on a hateful show and by a man using the book to spew bigotry?
When someone uses Christianity to promote antisemitism, Christians have an extra responsibility to condemn it. When someone uses a Bible you published to praise Hitler and attack Jews, you have an extra responsibility to denounce it. Leaders at Thomas Nelson might even find a book close by that tells them what to do: “Open your mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.”
Other News of Note
Alex Isenstadt of Politico reported that as the Republican National Committee tries to understand how the party underperformed in the midterm elections, one person tapped as an advisor is religious-political activist Tony Perkins.
Emily Yahr of the Washington Post profiled Amy Grant ahead of the singer receiving the Kennedy Center Honors.
Jerry Falwell Jr. spoke with Insider Higher Ed to reflect on his fall from leadership at Liberty University and the ongoing woes of the institution.
Mark Wingfield of Baptist News Global wrote about clergy in Colorado Springs speaking out against religious hate speech after a deadly shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub.
Andrew Higgins of the New York Times wrote about younger generations in Poland leaving the Catholic Church amid scandals, which could bring a significant shift in the predominately Catholic nation.
Rose Marie Berger wrote for Sojourners about the power of peaceful protest in Ukraine.
Bonnie Kristian wrote for Christianity Today to ask, “Why are we so cynical about peace on Earth?”
A megachurch in Plano, Texas, sparked controversy online as it prepares its annual Christian pageant with live animals, nearly 1,000 people in the cast and choir, a large LED video wall, and, of course, flying drummer angels soaring above the pews.
Tracy Riggs reported for The Alabama Baptist on pastors bringing seasonal joy by working as Santas at malls, Christmas parties, and parades.
Photo of the Week
Thanks for reading!
A Public Witness is a reader-supported publication of Word&Way. To receive new posts and support our journalism ministry, subscribe today.