The whole truth
I recently subscribed to WORLD, after weeks of reading it online, because of "Faithful reporting" (April 10) by Joel Belz. He described exactly what I want in a newsmagazine: a reasonable attempt at evenhanded reporting, tempered by what I'll call a born-again worldview. Only people who know the truth can accurately report it. And I'd like the whole truth. When George Bush drops the ball, or if Bill Clinton is right about something (hey, it could happen), let us know. We readers might even be mature enough
to sort it out for ourselves.
I appreciate your willingness to stay focused on the Word of God. Many people make the mistake of equating "conservative" and "Republican" to "Christian." Although faithful Christians tend to be conservative and Republican, we cannot blindly trust that they are in line with God's Word. We must be like the Bereans who "searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
-Kurt W. Cox
According to "Faithful reporting," the issues by which WORLD evaluates the presidential candidates are: defending the unborn, defending traditional marriage, government spending, judicial appointments, and maintaining a strong national defense. If we are to evaluate the candidates from a "biblical perspective," shouldn't we include "treatment of the poor" and "economic justice," or how about "stewardship of the environment"?
For decades, even generations, we have heard the adage "religion and politics don't mix." However, WORLD courageously deals with these topics and brings a balance based on God's Word that is sorely needed. Thank you for "thinking things through."
I am, according to my age, a member of Generation X and, according to "Keeping it real" (April 10), should be skeptical of the programmed church model that the previous generation of believers created. However, as a married mother of two young children, my desires for spiritual community and my practical needs as a parent naturally take a different shape than those of the single, 27-year-old guy. Real community and honest worship can and should be present in every body of believers, not just the churches of the young.
Young evangelicals are facilitating churches built on relationships, not phony, slick programming. But with all the "realness" and "authenticity," where is the offensive message of the cross? As I have watched the development of this movement, I see the church becoming more worldly by the hour to "relate" to Gen-Xers. The scriptural idea of coming out and being separate is nowhere to be found.
Thanks for "Keeping it real." What an encouragement to hear of Christians who are taking God seriously and applying His Word to daily life. Now if only I could find such a church in my area.
Although some may object to your expanded movie coverage ("News you should use," April 10), I commend you for encouraging Christians to engage the culture. We let an unbeliever get the Oscars for The Lord of the Rings, and will soon see unbelievers produce the Narnia story. I'm throwing a party when a Christian writer wins an Academy Award for his screenplay of Out of the Silent Planet and another when a Christian producer is hailed at the Sundance Film Festival for his edgy adaptation of Pilgrim's Progress. Until then, I'm reading WORLD's reviews and talking with my friends about movies and truth. Maybe someday my kid will be the one with an Oscar, like the bloody scalp of a giant, hanging from his fist.
I am thrilled that you are expanding your movie coverage. My husband and I own a three-screen, independent, first-run movie theater in a small midwestern town. Mostly we love the work, but this can be a hard business for Christians. Sometimes because of contract issues we have to play something we would rather not. We are more frustrated that, although a well-advertised movie like Toy Story will do very well, some of the best movies we show do not do well at the box office. We can lose money on a very good movie like The Basket. Perhaps your coverage will help people identify and attend the higher quality, family movies.
Our family loves WORLD, but how can we train our children not to defile themselves with the world when you give favorable ratings to movies whose reviews alone defile my Christian sensibilities?
Andrew Coffin's review of the Coen brothers' latest film, The Ladykillers, bemoaned the excessive profanity as if it were unusual ("Crude Coens," April 10), but profanity is quite common in Coen films. Their acclaimed Fargo has a comparable amount and The Big Lebowski has much more.
Thanks to Mindy Belz for her article on rebuilding Iraq ("From dictatorship to development," April 10). I wish we had other reporters who would tell the truth about what is really going on over there.
Shame on you. I expect better than the picture of the bodies of two Americans hanging from the bridge in Fallujah (The Buzz, April 10).
-Martha B. Briers
Are heterosexuals going to be allowed to have civil unions as well ("Compromising positions," April 10)? If not, it really is discrimination. If they can, it will open up a whole new bag of bills-medical insurance bills, that is. If insurance companies are forced to insure "partners," what will that do to medical insurance costs?
Trout Run, Pa.
Although many conservatives feel strongly that we should pass a federal marriage amendment to protect traditional marriage, it is good to see some states taking the initiative. This is where the responsibility lies. A federal constitutional amendment would give unprecedented authority to the U.S. government to regulate matters pertaining to the family, authority it should not have. This could open a Pandora's Box of unforeseen problems down the road.
-James Carlyle Green
St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
As much as I would like to agree with Phillip Johnson's sunny prediction that the "crucial turning point in America came in 2004" when we "internalized the nihilistic implications" of same-sex "marriage," it seems that we are going in the opposite direction ("Darwin's meltdown, April 3). According to Chuck Colson's Breakpoint broadcast, our representatives in Washington who would like to support the Federal Marriage Amendment are hearing a deafening silence from America, including the church. I fear that 2004 will be instead the year that events swept over us again as we stood idly by, wringing our hands.
Camano Island, Wash.
The year 2025 seems a bit too optimistic as a date for Intelligent Design to overcome the hold of Satan's naturalism over academia, media, culture, and even some churches. Nice idea, though, and fascinating articles. These writers demonstrate that true science complements the authority of the Word.
-Scott J. Stone
The first country to legalize de facto gay marriage was Denmark in 1989; Norway followed in 1993 and Sweden in 1994 ("The Nordic track," March 6, p. 22).
Note to readers
WORLD's e-mail system was either down or undergoing repairs April 23-28. If you sent a letter to Mailbag, a change of address, or other important e-mail during that time and have not had a response from us, please resend that e-mail. Thank you.