Jimmy Carter, the 39th president of the United States, turns 91 years old on Thursday. By any reckoning, he has led a remarkable life. Anyone who visits Plains, in southwest Georgia, and especially the Carter farmstead three miles down the road in Archery, cannot fail to be impressed by the simplicity of Carter’s background.
September 29, 2015
It’s a kind of parlor game in some circles. Rattle off various misperceptions about what the Bible says.
July 14, 2015
One of the reasons I was drawn to Jimmy Carter, first as an emerging national politician in the mid-1970s and then as a biographical subject decades later, was the similarity of our backgrounds. Both of us were reared in evangelical households, he in rural southwest Georgia and I in Nebraska, Minnesota, Michigan, and Iowa. We are both the oldest in our families: Carter had three younger siblings, and I have four younger brothers. We had “born-again” experiences at an early age, Carter at age 11 and me initially at, well, three years old—but that is another story.
August 13, 2014
Jimmy Carter rode to the White House in 1976 on the twin currents of his reputation as a “New South” governor and a resurgence of progressive evangelicalism in the early 1970s. Progressive evangelicalism, which traces its lineage to 19th-century evangelicals and to the commands of Jesus to care for “the least of these,” represented a very different version of evangelical activism from that of the religious right.
May 14, 2014
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Tis the season of Jesus, Santa and Pope Francis. It’s too early to place Francis in the pantheon of church reformers alongside Gregory VII or Adrian VI—or even next to John XXIII, who memorably announced the Second Vatican Council by saying that it was time to “open the windows and let some fresh air in.” But the early returns on the first Latin American pontiff suggest that his will be anything but a caretaker papacy.
December 18, 2013
The closing of the doors of Exodus International earlier this summer doesn’t just signal a sea change in evangelical thinking about homosexuality. It also highlights some evangelicals’ dubious claims of adherence to immutable convictions.
August 15, 2013
The scene at the Church of the Reformation several weeks ago—just a couple blocks from the U. S. Capitol—was a mixture of resolve and celebration, equal parts political rally and family reunion. People milled about on the front steps posing for photographs, greeting old friends and making new acquaintances.
May 22, 2013