about a religion is a dangerous thing. A generalization that had seemed safe
was that Buddhism is a peaceful religion. It's all about compassion, isn't
it—about renouncing desire and learning to empty yourself?
Before his untimely death in November of 2008, William Placher was a celebrated teacher who exercised his gifts of exceptional insight and clarity of expression not only in the classroom but also in his many books, book chapters and edited works. One project in progress at the time of his passing was a biblical commentary series authored by well-respected theologians and published by Westminster John Knox.
Asking me to write a review of Peter Leithart's defense of Emperor Constantine may seem like asking the fox to inspect the henhouse. My work, after all, has been closely identified with that of John Howard Yoder and in particular with Yoder's critique of Constantinianism.
After winning control of the Philippines in the Spanish-American War, President William McKinley paced the floors of the White House, wondering what to do with the Asian archipelago. When he got down on his knees to pray for divine guidance, the answer came to him in four parts: don’t give the islands back to Spain; don’t let France or Germany have them either; don’t leave the Filipinos to themselves, as they’re unfit to govern themselves; take the Philippines, educate and civilize the people, “and by God’s grace do the very best we [can] by them, as our fellow men for whom Christ also died.” The American conquest led to a bloody calamity. McKinley was assassinated long before he was able to see how awful God’s “perfect will” was (Matthew Paul Turner, Our Great Big American God, Jericho Books).