fbpx
Legalization of Cannabis: How Should Christians Respond? |  POD006

Legalization of Cannabis: How Should Christians Respond? | POD006

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Todd Miles – Guest,
Professor of Theology at Western Seminary

Paul Brandes – Co-Host

Bill Gorman – Co-Host

Show Notes

 

The cannabis debate is raging, with some countries legalizing it and others banning recreational use. In this episode of theFormed.life Podcast, Dr. Todd Miles joins us to discuss the legalization of cannabis and how Christians should respond. We explore a biblical framework, the different elements in cannabis, and some wisdom questions that can help us make informed decisions. Todd is a pastor and author with a beautiful Christian perspective on this topic

Is recreational marijuana a sin? What are the risks and benefits of cannabis use? How should Christians respond to the legalization of cannabis? This is an important topic, and we want to ensure we offer a biblical perspective. Whether you’re a Christian or not, this episode is a must-listen! We hope you enjoy the conversation and find it helpful as you continue to think about your response to cannabis.

Dr. Todd Miles is author of Cannabis and the Christian: What the Bible Says about Marijuana, and a Professor of Theology at Western Seminary in Portland, OR. He also serves as an elder at his local church.

The health risks of cannabis are not discussed at length in this conversation; however, in his book, Dr. Miles points out the increasing risks that are often overlooked or minimized. In fact, he cites a study showing that “while marijuana use is on the rise, perception of the risk is on the decline” (pg.33). We’ve included a short summary of some of those risks here, and Dr. Miles has a whole chapter on these risks in the book, so check it out there. Of note, marijuana is the most commonly used federally illegal drug in the United States, due in large part to the health risks. 

 

Health Risks Associated with Cannabis Use (from the book)

Four main categories of risks:
  • Addiction: While it is true that marijuana has been shown to be less addictive than nicotine and alcohol, less addictive doesn’t mean not addictive. Of particular concern, studies show that 17% of adolescent users develop an addiction.
  • Lung and heart issues: Both the American Heart Association and American Lung Association warn against smoking or vaping any substance, including cannabis, because of “potential harm to the heart, lungs, and blood vessels.” (pg. 38)
  • Teen use interferes with brain development: He writes, “THC has been proven to interfere with brain development [in teens], and the losses created by that interference cannot be restored… The evidence is overwhelming, and there is no credible disagreement with that conclusion” (pg. 40).
  • Psychosis and mental illness: Since the late 1980s, “study after study has been performed showing that marijuana use increases the risk for psychosis in general and schizophrenia in particular” (pg. 45)

RESOURCES:

Cannabis and the Christian – by Todd Miles (book on Amazon)

More information about health risks can be found here:
https://www.cdc.gov/marijuana/health-effects/index.html

Mental Health and Spiritual Formation as Followers of Jesus |  POD005

Mental Health and Spiritual Formation as Followers of Jesus | POD005

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Liz Nelson – Licensed Counselor

Tom Nelson – Lead Senior Pastor

Paul Brandes – Host

Bill Gorman – Co-Host

Show Notes

In this episode, we explore the intersection of mental health and spiritual formation as followers of Jesus. Tom and Liz Nelson join us for this important conversation. 

One in four of us will experience a mental health crisis in our lives. If we knew that one in four of our church family experienced this trauma, wouldn’t we want to know about it and have the church be a place that considers the unique needs of those dealing with these issues? 

Even if you never personally experience a crisis, your mental health and emotions are a part of how God made you, and Jesus cares deeply about you as a whole person.

In this conversation, we talk about:

  • how to “undo the aloneness” in our lives
  • the coming together of theology and mental health
  • the importance of not just knowing God but being known by God
  • Some practical advice on what to look for in mental health professional 
  • Attachment theory

You’ll hear us use the language of “attachment” and “attachment theory” a number of times. If you want to learn more about attachment and how it affects your relationships with others and God, here are a few resources:

Integrating Faith at Work | Mitch Holthus | POD 004

Integrating Faith at Work | Mitch Holthus | POD 004

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Mitch Holthus, Voice of the Kansas City Chiefs

Paul Brandes – Host

Bill Gorman – Co-Host

Show Notes

We hope to challenge you to think deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life.

 
In this episode of theFormed.life podcast, we talk with the Voice of the Chiefs, our very own Mitch Holthus. Mitch tells us about his work with the Chiefs and what it looks like to integrate faith into all of life, sharing the truth of the gospel, the importance of scripture memorization, and making time for others even when life is hard and even when it gets busy.
 

 
SHOW QUOTES:

“The time that the Lord gives us in this life [is not infinite], and he wants to use us. And he needs us…it’s a very strange strategy, really, that he’s relying on us because…I’ve goofed this up many times down through the years.

“It’s a dream for a lot of people to work in the realm of sports and professional sports. But many times that dream is not what they thought it was going to be, and it can be a very difficult profession to be in… it can get pretty intense. There’s a lot of frank discussions about shattered dreams.” “What God has taught me is to have that heart to be open. And even though you’re [feeling like] oh man, I got ten things to do, and I got a deadline tomorrow… I’ve got to stop, freeze, and just be available. And sometimes that leads to some very powerful situations.”

“I keep a prayer journal and sermon notes…what I keep is 17 years prior…because when I do that I see how God has been faithful in the things that I’ve forgotten about.”
Gender Dysphoria Issues | Dr. Julia Sadusky | POD 003

Gender Dysphoria Issues | Dr. Julia Sadusky | POD 003

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Dr. Julia Sadusky

Paul Brandes – Host

Bill Gorman – Co-Host

Show Notes

We hope to challenge you to think deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life. In this episode, we sit down with Dr. Julia Sadusky to talk about gender identity and gender dysphoria and how the local church can be a place of hope. As followers of Jesus, it is our desire to respond with grace and love to the many cultural shifts relating to gender identity while remaining tethered to a biblical foundation. Our special guest is Dr. Julia Sadusky joining hosts Paul Brandes and Bill Gorman.
 
This is Episode 3 of theFormed.life Podcast, where we hope to challenge you in thinking deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life.
 
 

 

 

At Christ Community, we affirm with our Lord Jesus and believers throughout history that “from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female’” (Mark 10:6; Genesis 1:27). There is a good design to our bodies being sexed, and a beautiful diversity of women and men contributing in genuinely complementary ways in the church, the family, and broader society.

And yet, how do we respond both to a culture that is increasingly opposed to biblical truth and to individuals who are image-bearers of God navigating difficult situations related to their gender identity?

Facing these complex questions can be daunting, but humble listening and learning is always a good next step. This is why, with the encouragement of our Elder Leadership Team, we invited Dr. Sadusky to join us. She is deeply rooted in an orthodox view of the authority of Scripture and holds to a biblical understanding of gender and sexuality. And she models beautifully how to think clearly and love compassionately.

POD 002 |  Implausibility of faith in our culture. Complementary alliance.

POD 002 | Implausibility of faith in our culture. Complementary alliance.

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Melody McSparran

Tom Nelson – Senior Pastor

Paul Brandes – Host

 

Show Notes

We hope to challenge you in thinking deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life. For today’s challenge we are talking about the increased cultural implausibility of our faith, particularly around male, female, gender, and marriage. When it comes to biblical teaching on male, female, and gender is our faith plausible? Special guests are Melody McSparran and Tom Nelson joining host Bill Gorman.
 
 This is Episode 2 of theFormed.life Podcast, where we hope to challenge you in thinking deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life.
 
 

 
Overall gender confusion in our culture and exposure of unhealthy patterns in the church At the same time, increased tension between egalitarians and complementarians (Define terms). Complementarians tend to see men as leading in the church, while egalitarians see women and men as both leading in the church without distinction.
 
When you are stuck in a debate, perhaps a different question needs to be asked: Rather than starting with “Who’s in charge?”, we decided to ask “How are men and women designed to relate to one another?”
 
From there our team decided to embark on a biblical theology of male in female in the Scripture and here is what we found: Rather than an emphasis on human authority in Scripture, God’s creational design in Genesis emphasizes the relationship or synergy between male and female.
 
Now it is important to keep in mind that there are faithful, Bible-loving Jesus followers who disagree on this. So a humble and gracious posture is vital in this conversation.
 
As we did this biblical theology, we saw that men and women are designed to be in complementary alliance as members of God’s family.
 
 
“Complementary alliance” is a two-fold idea. God says in Genesis 2:18, “It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a helper corresponding to him.” The Hebrew word translated “helper” here is a word most often used for God himself in Scripture.
 
The woman is the essential ally that is to come alongside the man so together they may rule and reign over creation. Secondly, she is corresponding to him, or complementary to him. They are both image bearers of God, but bear that image distinctly according to their gender. Therefore our team thought the term “complementary alliance” captures this fundamental ideal in the Creation account.
 
However, the consequences of the Fall fractured this design, and God clearly describes the consequences for the humans relationship; but male domination and female frustration were a result of the fall, not God’s original design.
 
With the starting point of understanding God’s design of Complementary Alliance, we are then in a position to ask how this looks in the church.
 
First of all, we need to grasp that the overriding metaphor to describe the interactions in the church in the New Testament is a family, where God is the Father. He is in charge and has given all authority to His Son.
 
In a family, all are needed and necessary members, but not all function the same. Fathers are not mothers and brothers are not sisters. Each is unique, and each brings a unique contribution.
 
Therefore as the church establishes leadership structures, it must always hold this family dynamic in mind. While leadership structures could look a lot of different ways (and do!) in churches, the importance of functioning as a loving family must always be foremost.
 
We have brief sketches in the New Testament but not a laid-out formula of leadership structures. That is why we need grace when we differ.
 
So, why do we have male-only elders at Christ Community? Elders serve as guardians or watchmen, bearing an extra weight of responsibility on behalf of the family. They are rather like the fathers of the church, protecting it and guarding it. That is not to say that all do not have a responsibility of protecting and guarding the gospel and the church. We do. It’s just that the elders bear the ultimate responsibility in our polity.
 
And like a healthy family, there are places of leadership for women in our church as well. Women should be seen exercising their gifts in all capacities, including pastoral ministry and preaching and teaching when applicable. Indeed, Christ Community has women pastors, women leading in areas of financial responsibility, in worship and many other areas.
POD 001 | Stan Archie and Tom Nelson

POD 001 | Stan Archie and Tom Nelson

WATCH

LISTEN

... | READ MORE BELOW

Hosts & Guests

Stan Archie – Senior Pastor
Christian Fellowship Baptist

Tom Nelson – Senior Pastor
Christ Community – KC

Bill Gorman – Host

Show Notes

This is Episode 001 of theFormed.life Podcast, where we hope to challenge you to think deeply about what it means to follow Jesus in all of life.

In this episode of the podcast, we are talking about the hostile dividing walls that tragically still exist between people, with a special focus on race, ethnicity, and culture.

  • That’s a big topic, and we won’t be able to cover it all. One of the tools Jesus uses to tear down hostile dividing walls is genuine relationships.
  • With us today to help unpack that idea is Christian Fellowship Baptist’s Senior Pastor, Stan Archie, as well as Christ Community Church’s Lead Senior Pastor, Tom Nelson.
  • The current conversation taking place in our broader culture about racial and ethnic differences is often not life-giving or especially productive.
  • Let’s focus more specifically on the church. What are you seeing in how the church is engaging in this conversation? Knowing that there is both healthy and unhealthy in the church in this conversation.

Notes

Often the church’s response is too simplistic from both “sides”:

  • Without giving in to caricature, listen to some of what we hear in conversation:
  • “History doesn’t matter that much; the present and future should be the focus.”
  • “Structural/systemic problems are not as harmful as often portrayed; the real problem is the breakdown of the family, lack of education, personal choices, etc.”
  • There is a lack of recognition that individual choices (good and bad) matter!

Quote

“What is poverty? Poverty is the inability to fully experience image bearing. The four relationships (God, ourselves, others, whole of creation) are not working the way that God designed them to work. Poverty is rooted in broken relationships and those relationships are broken for three reasons; individual brokenness, systemic injustice, and demonic forces. That’s the story. The world, the flesh, and the devil.”  – Bryan Fikkert

Start Listening Today!

Subscribe on your favorite podcast platform.