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This issue of A Public Witness explores how a hidden 17th-century church in Amsterdam can teach us lessons about the need for religious freedom and a pluralistic public square.

Faithful America’s Rev. Nathan Empsall makes the case that Christian Nationalism poses multiple threats to the common good, but perhaps none are more dangerous than its misuse of Christianity to incite violence.

Louisiana has become the first state to require that the Ten Commandments be displayed in every public school classroom under a bill signed into law by Republican Gov. Jeff Landry on Wednesday.

This issue of A Public Witness looks back at Thomas Jefferson’s letter to Baptists penned 202 years ago this week and explores why prominent figures deliberately misrepresent the metaphorical “wall of separation” between church and state.

Dangerous Dogma

Church

At a recent PCA meeting, critics of ‘Jesus Calling,’ written by Sarah Young, called for an investigation to see if the book was safe for Christians to read.

Once relegated exclusively to gay bars and nightclubs, drag is increasingly in the open these days — at libraries, music festivals, and, yes, churches.

Two commissions overseeing research into the denomination's part in the assimilationist schools are asking Episcopal bishops to grant access to archives in their regions and to recruit research assistants of their own.

Nation

Louisiana has become the first state to require that the Ten Commandments be displayed in every public school classroom under a bill signed into law by Republican Gov. Jeff Landry on Wednesday.

In their initial complaint, plaintiffs noted that in addition to the text of the law itself, lawmakers made religious arguments while debating the bill ahead of its passage.

Debuting on June 20, it’s the first film entirely in American Sign Language to debut in theaters, according to the filmmakers.

World

This issue of A Public Witness explores how a hidden 17th-century church in Amsterdam can teach us lessons about the need for religious freedom and a pluralistic public square.

Despite their cultural and religious differences, a rowdy pack of more than 100 comedians from around the world embraced the ‘warmth and openness’ they experienced.

He offered an ethical take on an issue that is increasingly on the agenda of international summits, government policy, and corporate boards alike.

Editorials

While messengers to last week’s annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention debated how to treat churches with women in pastoral roles, Baptist Women in Ministry showed up to offer a counter witness.

The thinning of the UMC’s conservative ranks makes this week’s conference a perfect time to address the issue.

Missing in all the jokes and news reports about the Trump Bible is that this isn’t the first time a presidential stamp of approval was sought for the Good Book.

Word&Way Voices

Faithful America’s Rev. Nathan Empsall makes the case that Christian Nationalism poses multiple threats to the common good, but perhaps none are more dangerous than its misuse of Christianity to incite violence.

Christians often hear, share, and remember lies — but the light that exposes these lies doesn’t make their newsfeed. And this can make it difficult to be part of a faith community.

A Jordanian worship band has made it their mission to perform and record hymns composed around the middle of the 20th century that might have otherwise been lost to time.

E-Newsletter

This issue of A Public Witness explores how a hidden 17th-century church in Amsterdam can teach us lessons about the need for religious freedom and a pluralistic public square.

This issue of A Public Witness addresses the ways in which American Christians are part of the problem as explored in “The Religion of Whiteness: How Racism Distorts Christian Faith.”

This issue of A Public Witness takes you inside the SBC meeting to explore debate over the U.S. Pledge of Allegiance and other moments where Southern Baptists considered issues of patriotism, politics, and Christian Nationalism.

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Podcasts

We had a lot of great podcast conversations this year. So let’s count down the top 10 most-downloaded of episodes of Dangerous Dogma in 2023.

In episode 104 of Dangerous Dogma, Jay Augustine, senior pastor at St. Joseph AME Church in Durham, North Carolina, talks about his book When Prophets Preach: Leadership and the Politics of the Pulpit. He also discusses preaching about current events,

In episode 103 of Dangerous Dogma, Craig Lamar Brown and Andrea Summer talk with about their movie Between Mercy and Me. They also discuss issues of racism, church worship, and creating music and movies. 

In episode 102 of Dangerous Dogma, Amanda Tyler, executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, talks about attending the ReAwaken America Tour and a Pastors for Trump meeting at Trump Doral in Miami, Florida.

Books

This issue of A Public Witness addresses the ways in which American Christians are part of the problem as explored in “The Religion of Whiteness: How Racism Distorts Christian Faith.”

In “Christmaker: A Life of John the Baptist,” esteemed New Testament scholar James F. McGrath turns his critical eye to overlooked details in Scripture and long-neglected sources to discover who this influential figure really was.

In “Machen’s Hope: The Transformation of a Modernist in the New Princeton,” Richard E. Burnett crafts a nuanced narrative of J. Gresham Machen’s intellectual journey from enthusiastic modernist to stalwart conservative.

We’ve once again asked several Word&Way writers to each offer two books perfect for curling up with at the beach, on your couch, or in your backyard as you listen to the singing of the cicadas.