Essay / Literature

Behold Your King: Reflections on a Palm Sunday

Christians remember on Palm Sunday the triumphal entry of Christ to Jerusalem–the King of Glory riding to the ostensible seat of his political and religious power, received as victor and Lord with shouts of Hosannas. But there is a great deal about the scene that–at

Essay / Culture

Today H. P. Lovecraft Died (1937)

I know this day is most famous for the death of Julius Caesar, but I did not come to bury Caesar or to praise him. Instead, I want to point out a writer for whom every day was the Ides of March. Howard Phillips Lovecraft

Essay / Literature

Today George Herbert Died (1633)

March 1, 1633, George Herbert died of tuberculosis. He left as his major literary accomplishment a set of poems called The Temple, a nearly inexhaustible source of spiritual insight and guidance. Here is my favorite, The Bunch of Grapes. Joy, I did lock thee up:

Essay / Art

Top Five Christian Comic Books

I sometimes promote myself as the “world’s greatest systematic theologian cartoonist,” because it’s a pretty safe boast. If I ever meet another professional theologian who’s also a published cartoonist, I’ll have to adjust my bragging to something like “one of the two greatest.” But while

Essay / Literature

Today the Pilgrim’s Progress was Published (1678)

Today in 1678 John Bunyan brought out the first version of the Pilgrim’s Progress. He did make some revisions after that first edition, but the book was recognizably itself as soon as it was published. Samuel Taylor Coleridge, famously sophisticated, called this simple book “incomparably

Essay / Art

The Space of a Sonnet

Nuns fret not at their Convent’s narrow room; And Hermits are contented with their Cells; And Students with their pensive Citadels: Maids at the Wheel, the Weaver at his Loom, Sit blithe and happy; Bees that soar for bloom, High as the highest Peak of

Essay / Literature

Faith and Works Got Married (Hannah More)

Hannah More was a wildly popular author in her day because she had the common touch and a style that perfectly suited the tastes of her time. Here is one of her doctrinal poems (from volume 5 of her collected works), in which she carries

Essay / Literature

The Shack: Four Walls, Five Reviews

The Kids-Book Author: Have you read the Shack of Mack? Have you read this paperback? Would you give it to your friends? Will you spoil how it ends? I have read the Shack of Mack. I have read this paperback. I would not give it

Essay / Literature

Today is John Donne’s Birthday

Today in 1572, John Donne was born. Donne was equally powerful as a poet and as a preacher, because in both roles he exercised an apparently absolute mastery over the English language. In his 1999 book The Theology of John Donne, Jeffrey Johnson argues that

Essay / Literature

Are We Seven?

First: A classic early poem by William Wordsworth. Then: Four visual analyses of the evidence. We Are Seven A little child, dear brother Jem, That lightly draws its breath, And feels its life in every limb, What should it know of death? I met a

Essay / Literature

Leave it to a poet…

A selection from W. H. Auden, ‘The Poet & The City’, in The Dyer’s Hand and other essays (London: Faber and Faber, 1963), 86-87 …to speak sense into politics. ‘There are two kinds of political issues, Party issues and Revolutionary issues. In a party issue,

Essay / Education

Vocabulary Quiz on The Horse and His Boy

A few years ago, I taught the Chronicles of Narnia as part of a college course. I always feel odd teaching a class on books that people read for fun, books with a very high entertainment value. Isn’t that what people outside the academy assume