Virtue in the Wasteland Podcast

Little known fact: the original name of Virtue in the Wasteland was “Jeff and Dan’s Vanity Project to Explore Their Hobbies” but we decided to go a little more broad and talk about society and religion and stuff…

Maybe that’s not exactly how it played out, but there is a funny bit of guilt we feel whenever we dive head first into a topic that is seemingly just tickling our fancy as mass entertainment and thus unworthy of critical reflection. But on this show we will argue that R.E.M. is not just one of our favorite bands, but the most important American band of all time. Sound hyperbolic? Check out the show and see if we can pull off the argument and join in on

We recorded this show from the RV somewhere between Athens, GA and Charlottesville, VA after our pilgrimage to the mecca of R.E.M. fan sites. We got to discussing the band, its evolution and role in 80’s and 90’s pop culture. On this show, which was recorded moths ago and feared lost until only a few days ago, we make the audacious argument that R.E.M. is the most significant rock band in U.S. history.


3 caveats: this is not “the best R.E.M. songs” podcast. In fact, if it was, it would suffer from being terribly mundane and uninventive as a “best of”. Doing that, using commercial success and air play to judge significance, would make this super lame and obvious. So the tracks we pick are the hits, but the ones that are indicative of the band, and tell us something about them and the society they reflected.

Caveat # 2: There is a lot of music on this episode! About a minute or so of each song we talk about. Using all the actual music is allowed under the Fair Use Act, as we are playing it to comment on, and use for teaching purposes. In case you were concerned.

Caveat #3 We do not discuss R.E.M. post New Adventures in Hi-Fi. This is not because we dislike later R.E.M. (listen to our show with Dave Zahl, he convinced us to give late R.E.M. more attention in our own lives. We could argue that R.E.M after New Adventures is a different band, as Bill Berry suffered an aneurysm on tour and retired, giving way to a rotating list of drummers and (unfortunately, in this case) drum machines. I have recently picked up an article I’ve been working on ,which ranks every R.E.M. song. Late R.E.M is well represented. On the Spotify list below, you can see some of our picks for post Hi-Fi R.E.M. songs.

Direct download: REMLOSTSHOW.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Andrew Syed (formerly Andrew Paquin) visited Jeff recently, during which time Dan was in Dallas related to the new 1517 Academy (check it out). Andrew was Jeff's colleague at a previous institution, until politics and conceptions of Christian political beliefs resulted in a controversy. Andrew and Jeff explore this backstory, which several news outlets picked up a decade ago. Andrew discusses the negative effects the events and how he sought healing through recognition of the long term effects of trauma. 

Direct download: Jesus_the_Academy_and_Politics.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Christmas movies and carols and traditions and….. we could go on and on. And in fact, we have gone “on and on” for over 5 years now doing a special Christmas show.  On today’s show the guys are back together again in the comfy confines of the ViW Irvine studios and it felt like old times. The thesis of today’s show is that the strange “thrill of hope” we all experience this time of year is no coincidence. 

In fact, we are not thoroughly entangled in any other holiday like we are Christmas. And while we might bemoan the commercialism, or creeping secularism (still not sure what that is, though) or stress, we might also recognize that our grocery store aisles are filled with the music proclaiming good news. While the general tenor of the yer can be rough and go-it-alone, this is the time of year when we soften, the time we become like a child again in the very season God deigned to do the same thing.

Direct download: 2018xmasBetter.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

I don’t have any naked baby photos. Frankly, I don’t have any baby photos. I blame either a house fire or parental indifference. Nonetheless, I wonder if I might not start subtitling my talks as “naked baby photos” not because there are, but because when I overshare, that’s the closest thing I can relate to how I’ll probably make you feel when I share publicly about my life.

Like naked baby photos, they are harmless, but show you a side we don’t always put on display. As a matter of fact, you aren’t supposed to be hearing this talk! the deal was that it was only for those in the room. My wife convinced me to figure out a way to edit it in such a way to take out some detail which might frustrate a minor side story, but not the big picture. So, I took my editing fingers to my LogicPro X (the official editing software of ViW!) and I cut out some proper names.

As I was editing it just now, I was listening to it and thinking, “dang, I shared quite a bit, maybe I should edit out that story that doesn’t make me look that good in retrospect” but I didn’t…. This isn’t the story of my delinquency, that’s just a side avenue where we see God at work shining some grace on me in Jesus. This is a talk about EGBOK (everything is going to be ok) and what it means. It’s the most in depth we’ve ever gone into that thing we say at the end of every show.

If you are so inclined to want me to speak at your event, or you want to hear or read or watch more of me you can go to my website HERE

Check out Jeff HERE (and listen to last week’s show wherein we play his HWSS talk)

Oh. please go HERE too and give, if you’re so inclined.

Direct download: The_Theology_of_The_Cross_and_EGBOK_from_HWSS18.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

From Here We Still Stand 2018: This is a talk with Jeff blowing up any ideas of works righteousness and refuses to settle with a message that’s just another doctrine to keep straight or moral code to live up to. Maybe you’re a bear, maybe you’re a butterfly, listen to this talk and it will make sense.

Direct download: The_Bears_and_the_Butterflies-_HWSS2018.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

David Zahl leads Mockingbird Ministries and has a forthcoming book about secular religion and self-righteousness in America. We talk virtue signaling, popular music, Bob Dylan's Christian era, and Charlottesville, VA.

Pre-order Dave's book HERE!

Direct download: Seculosity_with_David_Zahl.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

So, this show was a long time coming.  Since earlier in this year we had been playing phone and email tag with student filmmaker Jessica van der Wyngaard regarding her new documentary project that chronicles the lives of those influenced by Josh Harris, for good or ill.  


The first interveiw is a conversation with the filkmmaker- an Autralian, living in Canada, making a film about a largely American phenomenon.  van der Wyngaard was engaging and willing to take on the critics of her project.  Meanewhile, Josh Harris seemed reluctant to make, or talk about the film, and in our interveiw today, you may learn why.

Check out the film here:

Direct download: ISIKDG_with_RvdW_and_JHarris.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:54pm PDT

On this weeks episode we welcome back an old guest of the show: Emily Joy.  Since last being on our show, Emily Joy has contributed to Jeff's book Sexy as well as co-founded the #churchtoo movement and has become something of a lightning rod for issues of abuse in the church.  We interviewed Emily Joy while travelling through Nashville, and when she had told us she had "changed since we last me", we weren't sure what to expect.  Turns out she is the same poet, critic and artist just having raised the volume to 11.  We got an opportunity to sit back and listen to her tell her story, and share her perspective amongst the chirping crickets in the warm Nashville evening.  You can prepare to take notes, and challenge, and set the guest straight... wait, not on this show.  We listen, and we would ask that you would do the same.

Direct download: ViW_with_Emily_Joy_in_Nashville.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On this weeks’ episode we take you back to the 2nd Annual Here We Still Stand conference in beautiful, if slightly milquetoast, San Diego (just kidding San Diego, we love you, as we have recorded at least once a year from your confines only to eventually praise your street food, socio-economic diversity and weather).


Think of it as part of the road trip, as we recorded this show almost immediately upon returning from our road trip.  Stay tuned in the next few weeks as we continue releasing those shows.  On this live show we talk with Debi Winrich on her new podcast “the Soul of Christianity” as well as Dr. Russ McCullough from the Gwartney Institute to discuss his work on Christianity and Capitalism.


If you’re still reading, cool. So we can get a little more serious.  Not really serious, but just more familiar.  This is Dan, I write in the third person plural sometimes, but usually it’s me.  So.... hey.  This conference was super rad and you will be hearing our talks (mine in some edited fashion) soon.  But it was also crazy anxiety inducing for me as it could seem like a kind of intellectual fashion show for a specific type of religious speaker.  I had initially thought that we were doing a show that a few people might watch, but not that we were doing an actual live program.  You see, an hour or so of intellectual-and-otherwise chit chat isn’t that hard, but it’s also not a live performance.  At any rate, I had an acting coach once tell me that the last thing you should do is apologize before a performance.  What did she know, anyway?  Enjoy the show.  Even if it sounds rushed and stilted in the beginning because it was a strange new environment and I felt like a caged animal on display.  But it was fun. For reals!



Direct download: hwssliveshow.mp3
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Eric Dorman discusses his personal transition from progressivism to classic conservatism despite being a never Trumper, and the pragmatic nature of Tennessee politics. He works for a nonprofit news source that serves the homeless in Nashville, is a frequent contributor to Mockingbird, and runs his own site called Kept Republic.


Direct download: Going_Conservative_in_an_Age_of_Trump.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

After five plus years of the podcast, we finally get around to a proper discussion of virtue ethics. We do so with the leading active scholar in America today: Christian Miller of Wake Forest University. (The Roman Catholic Alisdair McIntyre and Lutheran Gilbert Meilaender have both recently retired, so we don't think this claim is hyperbolic.) Miller is the author of several books and articles, but his recent book The Character Gap: How Good Are We? is a gem. And it is both good at handling scholarship--including scholarship from the field of social psychology--and presenting it in an understandable way to a non-technical audience.  If you've been listening for a while and want a good presentation of virtue theory, this is the place to go. 

Miller holds a B.A. in philosophy from Princeton University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. His main areas of research are meta-ethics, moral psychology, moral character, action theory, and philosophy of religion. He is the A. C. Reid Professor of Philosophy at Wake Forest University and Philosophy Director of the Beacon Project (, funded by the Templeton Religion Trust. He was the Director of the Character Project (, which was funded by $5.6 million in grants from the John Templeton Foundation and Templeton World Charity Foundation. He is the author of over 80 papers as well as three books with Oxford University Press, Moral Character: An Empirical Theory(2013), Character and Moral Psychology (2014), and The Character Gap: How Good Are We? (forthcoming 2017). He is also the editor or co-editor of Essays in the Philosophy of Religion (Oxford University Press), Character: New Directions from Philosophy, Psychology, and Theology (Oxford University Press), Moral Psychology, Volume V: Virtue and Character (MIT Press), Integrity, Honesty, and Truth-Seeking (Oxford University Press), and The Continuum Companion to Ethics (Continuum Press).

Direct download: Character_Matters.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we travel into the deep south, racecar country, to meet up with Fr. Victor Singingeagle to talk about Potowatomi religion and Christianity, the pre-columbian social world of 15th c. America, and life as an outsider looking in.  


We first met Fr. Victor Singingeagle through our friends the Klembara's and Blake Flattely, who met him when they produced their documentary short on Concorida Selma.  The Rev Dr holds two PhDs, one in anthropology and one in English and He is a former administrator and professor at the now defunct Concordia College, Selma, a historically black college. As part of their road trip throughout the American South, Dan and Jeff met up with the good Reverend Dr., for a lively evening of discussion all things Native American, faith and culture.

Direct download: Father_Dr_Victor_Singingeagle.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Reflections on first leg of the road trip through the American Southeast, and an interview of three committed Christian kids in the Bible belt who defy easy categorization. Julia, Luke and Calista share their candid thoughts on hot button topics. Not a debate but fact finding. 

Direct download: Expectations_v_Reality_on_the_Road.mp3
Category:Bonus B-Side -- posted at: 12:00pm PDT

The #VIWROADTRIP2018 is underway, and this is our first show from the road.  While we are on the trip to visit a few people and places in the south, we started our RV trip in Orlando at the home of one of Jeff's best childhood friends.

The beginning of the show is a little different than others, as we did this in the RV while driving- Dan opens the show with a bit of the "thesis" of the show and then the guys go into Star Wars, religion, walking away from what we once loved, devotion despite criticism, and other things that swing in both the direction of Star Wars and the Church.  From Sep 28-Oct 10 the guys will br checking in daily from the road and you can find them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Direct download: Star_Wars_and_Jesus_in_Orlando.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Oh, that title almost sounds cynical. You know, like the kind of show that goes “you know that one incredibly popular thing? yeah? We, and God, disapprove”. That’s not our vibe, so, if you’re looking to slam on the Enneagram, that’s not what’s happening. In fact, you might be surprised at what we find as we dig into this popular, kinda-historical, emotional and psychological mapping system. We have some fun, talk about the popularity of these kinds of tests, and give you some info on our upcoming tour through the South.

Direct download: The_Not-So-Sacred_Enneagram_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:22am PDT

On today's show we talk about heroes and superheroes as an entrance into talking about one of the great lost "superhero" stories of all time: the Heliand.  This story, a kind of Beowulf meets King Arthur meets the Gospels, was super important during a few critical times in our history.  The story is good, but it could be dangerous.  Do our heroes fall prey to the dark side of the myth? Tune in and check it out.

Direct download: On_Superheroes_and_the_Heliand.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

So, last week we gave you a show that clocked in at over two hours- we always recommend that you break the show up in to bits, and so it might take some time for you to get to this next show. But fear not, this one is a shorter show, comprised of a few questions and calls from listeners.

Lest you think that a breezy call in show would allow us to dodge topics and pick easy questions like: best pizza topping? Or Unicorns or Bigfoot? But we want to let the show go where you, the listener, are interested. And this often leads to provocative questions and answers- we aren’t trying to be “edgy” but think through, in a non BS way, how we might want to respond and think.

Direct download: History_Sex_and_Community__Your_Phone_Calls_Sept_2018.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:20pm PDT

Whoa boy, this is a long one.  But well worth it, and we hope you will agree.  Break it up into a few listens, the show consists of three long form interviews.   A few weeks ago we played the stunningly raw April Kirby discuss her own story of abuse in the church, but we didn't head down to a creative collective outside of Dallas to hear that story (though we are glad we did).  We came down to do some work with our friends that Klembara's and record at their studio- The TX Studio- to record some classes and promotional materials.  While there, we interviewed a number of people we found at the co-op that had really interesting work and work stories.  We thought, what better time than when we are all getting back into the grind to hear some stories of people who got out of the common daily grind to find their calling.

This doesn't mean that working a 9-5 is less, but we are seeing that when it comes to jobs, there are more and more than we thought.  But how might we find these jobs that our high school or college counselors never told us about?  That is the direction we go with all three interviews, and we think you will find their stories inspiring. 

Direct download: Back_to_School_Special_V.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Ok, so we have these interviews, and we have listener calls, and we wanted to get to all or most of these things this week.  And then things changed, unfortunately.  On this episode we talk about the place of public mourning, we answer your pressing questions on tyrannosaurus procreation, talk about the place and power of forgiveness, and some personal things for public processing (because that seems to be what we do to a fault).

Direct download: Death_Sex_and_McCain.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

So this is show 300. And it's recorded on location in Dallas, TX.  This interview was going to be in a series of interviews on craftsmanship, vocation and creativity.  And trust us, April is one talented woman.  You can check out her stuff on she tells stories, makes videos, and helps to document important life events.

But, it's a little different than we thought.  Dan met April and her husband Clint about a year ago here in Dallas and was dranw to their particular journey in the creative world and the church.  So, the interview started by talking about the church, and didn't really leave that topic.  But it wasn't the conversation we were expecting.  It was more timely and important than we could have thought.  A quick note about the subject matter: this isn't a show for kids, and it touches on some issues of sexual abuse in the church.    

Ultimately, we want to foster the kind of listening that allows victims of abuse to feel safe, comfortable and worthy of sharing their story.   

Direct download: How_To_Listen_Tension_Faith_and_Art.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:16pm PDT

Seriously, a show about animals.  Which, of course would be interesting to a large majority of people given the fact we have an entire television networks devoted to animals.  The problem is, neither of these two Drs are a zoologist, and we're pretty sure Dan couldn't tell you the difference between any two closely related animals (try him, ask him the difference between a seagull and a dove).  But this show is not about zoology, but rather the imagery (sometimes from the zoo) that humankind has used to identify and explain itself to others.

We have an eye on the history of some of the more rich metaphors we have made as a species, from spirit animals to college mascots.  On today's show the guys discuss everything from mascots, to pets, spirit animals, and images of redemption in the animal kingdom. Enjoy the show.

Direct download: Spirit_Animal_in_the_Sky.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Augustine, his importance, the City of God, the Confessions, and what he means for Western Christianity. Also, is there any legitimate criticism or concern about his views on the relations between church and empire? Also, Jeff gives his take on the Beverly Hills Chihuahua franchise.

Direct download: Spoiling_Saint_Augustine.mp3
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"Why don't you guys talk about [fill in the blank] more often?"

We've gotten this comment throughout the years, and as a show about everything, it's hard to give all of our topics the appropriate time.  So- we opened the Virtue in the Wasteland Hotline at 1-844-393-0012.  And, as you may have heard before, we dedicate shows to answering whatever burning questions you might have for your two favorite professors.

Or us. 

Enjoy the show.

And call in with your own question (90 second maximum)


Direct download: summercallinshow.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:37pm PDT

On today's show we have another summertime special on which Dan is furiously overcompensating for Jeff being gone.  And you win! That's right, another guest and two different topics, almost too much show.


In the beginning of the show Dan talks about fear and immigration and then brings on policy analyst Joe Laughon to discuss the facts about what is happening on our border.  And then, there is a summer time treat, a live talk given by Dan a few months ago in North Dakota.  Dan sets it all up on this last of shows without our pal Jeff. Godspeed, good buddy.



Direct download: Fear_Immigration_etc..._updated.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

"If the Gospel is For Everyone, Why Is Everyone Around Me So White?" This was a question asked on today's episode by one of our guests, Doug Klembara.  It led to our conversation on the short documentary his wife and friend just made, and leads us into the conversation Dan has with @Lex_Lutheran of Twitter fame, he's a man who digs his church but sees major racial issues to be discussed and combatted.  

Sure, when we talk about the college closing everything is "alleged" and these are nothing but initial thoughts on how to think and talk about the issue.  As we always say, if you want to play "gotcha!", you will win.  Help us formulate our thoughts, recommend books, or just listen along with us as we delve into a topic that makes us all a little uncomfortable.

We are on the go and in 3 timezones, so mic quality could be better but the quality of conversation makes up for it- we'll be back in our regular studio next week.

Direct download: Red_and_Yellow_Black_and_White_They_Are_Precious.....mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:20pm PDT

The title makes it sound like this is a serious show. It really isn't. Mostly filled with Dan and Jeff messing around, but that's part of the point. Plus, they do get to a serious bit 3/4 of the way in, about the importance of letting go of the tyranny of leisure... the idea we have to "do" something instead of receiving the gift of existing, releasing our pain and resentment, and setting aside ego and fear. That's where things end up: ten things we refuse to do even though we know it will be good for us.


Direct download: Summertime_Spirituality.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

It's another live show! This time with a bunch of high school kids who had spent the week at Concordia University, Irvine for the annual Crosswise Institute.  They heard world class lectures and discussed really difficult and rewarding topics pertaining to the nature of God, the brain, science and drugs.  On the final day of the institute, Jeff and Dan (Jeff is one of many behind the scenes for the institute at CUI), set up for a live show with a guest audience, a musical guest and a game.  It's a summer time special, a live show- enjoy!

Direct download: Live_at_Crosswise_2018.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show the guys take a little break from their recent shows on history and power (all the moloch business) to answer questions you have and listen to comments you've made on our ViW hotline.  Enjoy the show!

Direct download: The_Wrath_of_God_Calvin_Hobbes_and_More_of_Your_Calls_Edit.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we are back discussing old-timey people and old fashioned ideas.  Not because we think making them old makes them good, in fact, some of our characters are downright scoundrels.  But we are looking for ways in which we might engage both the state and religious institutions in creating a compassionate, faithful, and flourishing state.  This is, in part, a reflection of the joint research the guys have undertaken for their first joint publication. Enjoy the Show!

Direct download: Charles_in_Charge-_Were_Going_Medieval.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show the guys get into some of the content of their latest research for the upcoming book.  As the guys are looking for thoughtful ways to address contentious issues they sometimes come across a book that shakes things up a bit.  In this case, it was Peter Leithart's Defending Constantine. Jeff and Dan discuss the book, the emperor and more importantly, what any of it means for us today.

Direct download: Constantinian_Craving_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Hey, it's our 5 year anniversary show! And rather than simply talk about the show, we decided to do the mother of all "what did we learn" segments.  If you've been traveling with us, you know it has been a wild ride and we have tried to be very open own our discussions with all of you. On this show we discuss the big take aways from over 275 consecutive weeks of broadcasting

Direct download: 10_Things_Weve_Learned_in_5_Years.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show the guys discuss some big news and talk about the upcoming, very special, 5 year anniversary show.  We talk about Reinhold Niebuhr, Roseanne, and a few other things that will set the course for the rest of this year.  Listen up, and enjoy the show! 

note: this show has been edited from its original. If you don't know why, it's not a big deal.  If you do know why... it's not really a big deal either.

Direct download: Power_the_Church_and_the_Way_of_Jesus-_Introducing_a_ViW_Manifesto.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:08pm PDT

Yeah, you read that right.  It's not a typo. On today's show we discuss a small asian community that is thousands of years old and has remained hidden from American eyes until recently.  After some of the more shameful events in the later years of the Vietnam War, many Hmong (then in Laos as exiles, and then mercenaries) came to America.  By 1980 the Hmong were allowed to become citizens and have since founded two rather large communities in California and Minnesota.  How do the Hmong deal with the "American" aspects of Christianity and how do they see they're own tribal and sometimes animistic faith in light of being baptized.  To talk through these interesting people, we have another immigrant but from Korea, Prof. Tom Park.  Prof Park is doing his doctoral studies on the faith and culture of these people he has lived amongst and served. Enjoy the show!

Direct download: Hmong.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we discuss one of the root causes of the Russian troll attacks, our willingness to give out all of our most private information, often times only to have a computer guess your age, compare you to a Disney princess, or explain why you and your coworker don't get along.

We do this by talking about, and taking the Proust Questionnaire- listen up!

Direct download: proust_questionnaire.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

It's a slightly different show today in that our guest is... well, Dan! He has recently published a full length historical monograph through 1517 Publishing and is promoting it around the web in various places.  And so Jeff decided to put on his interview hat and treat Dan like a guest. This lasted all of 15 minutes.  The guys end up discussing what Jeff is drinking, which historical duo we'd like to be, and of course, the Prophet of Lutheran Pietism, Johann Arndt. Dan's research on Arndt not only affected his own spiritual life and theological self understanding, but also offered him a way to look at problems within Lutheranism that persist to today.  Enjoy the show!



Direct download: Arndt_You_Glad_You_Listened.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:11pm PDT

Following in our now 5 year tradition, today's episode is a Graduation Special! We think about the world today, and what we woulds day to grads on their way into the real world!

Direct download: Graduation_Special-_EGBOK.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:59pm PDT

On today's show we take your calls! (You can call in on our voicemail line 844-393-0012) We take a range of questions from callers today, from the recent show we did on the poor, to some comparative religions and talk a little bit about surfing the Tao from some unlikely sources



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Direct download: Real_Callers_Real_Questions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's episode we book end last weeks episode on why people leave the church.  On this episode we hear from a caller, discuss why we haven't left the church ourselves and talk about why we stick around. 

Direct download: Hell_or_High_Water_Part_2-_Before_You_Leave.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's episode we talk about an upcoming podcast on the 1517 network of podcasts.  We are talking about why people live the church- something about which there has been no end to the writing of books.  So we want to try and whittle down the question: why do people leave thus church? And we want to be sympathetic and open to correction.  George Barna and others have spent the past decade telling us about the Millennials and Gen-Z, so what do we do about it?

Direct download: hell_and_high_water_redux.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:35pm PDT

On today's show we start by discussing a tent city for the homeless in Dan's hometown.  We move on to discuss the centrality of the poor throughout the Hebrew and Christian scriptures.  What are the "options" in how we might think about the poor and poverty?  What does the Reformation tradition show us? Listen up, we get deep and challenge ourselves on this episode.

Direct download: The_Poor_You_Will_Always_Have_with_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we examine the idea of a "narrative of decline" and how it might impact how we view the church.  This show is a thought experiment that began when Dan had an idea he wanted to work through.  This show is an exercise in thinking, looking at optimism and pessimism, and learning to understand how the gospel of hope fits in.

Direct download: Is_it_Getting_Worse.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's episode we play actual calls from actual listeners who bring up topics from gun control, the popularity of Jordan Peterson and our religious convictions.  Check it out, and call us at 844-393-0012 to leave your question as a message

On today's episode we dig into the national conversation on gun control after the recent tragedy in Parkland, FLA.  But don't expect the kind of conversation you might be used to.  The guys talk about the history and the constitution but then press on to a deeper answer (if it exists).

Direct download: Stickin_to_Our_Guns.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

Today's show is in two acts.  In act 1 the guys reflect on Cuba, talk about a few current events and talk about running to extreme positions in theology, politics and in general.  The second act is an interview with our friends Marcos and Mark a week after our trip to Cuba to reflect on what we learned there.

Direct download: Cuba_part_2_full_show_final_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On todays show we play clips from an interview we did with Marcos Ruiz and Mark Norman.  We discuss cuban politics, religion and the state of travel to the once forbidden isle.



Direct download: Virtue_in_Cuba_part_1_corrected.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:34pm PDT

On today's episode we pick up the theme from last week and discuss the ancient figure of Moloch, the importance of calling out religions of cruel power, and the surprisingly anti-intuitive actions of Jesus.

Direct download: the_molech_v_jesus_epic.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's episode we discuss an ancient religion with modern implications.

Direct download: A_Religion_of_Cruel_Power.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we answer actual questions from actual listeners.  We talk about tragedy, reproductive issues and ethics, the #metoo movement and the question Dan gets more than any other. Enjoy the show!

Direct download: Metoo_the_Media_and_more_Burning_Questions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On Today's show we discuss current events coming out of the Vatican and with Evangelical leader Franklin Graham on current events.  We then look at a brief history of the papacy, church authority in civil matters, and why we have an inclination to find figureheads who speak publicly for us.

Direct download: I_Love_It_When_You_Call_Me_Big_Papa_on_Italian_and_American_Popes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show the guys talk about the most compelling arguments against the church and discuss ways in which we can take these criticisms (from Marx, Freud, etc... ) and build stronger arguments for the importance of religious life today.

Direct download: Godless_Criticism_Compressed_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's show we go to a number of recent polls that tell us number of fascinating, hopeful, and curious things.  We discuss the nature of the American job market, vocational opportunities, millennials, and a few numbers that remind us that everything is going to be ok.

Direct download: Lies_Damned_Lies_and_Statistics.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT

On today's episode we hand out awards for our favorites of 2017 and look at some of the bigger stories of the past year and discuss how they might effect 2018.

Direct download: The_Yearbook_audio_fixed_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm PDT