Last week, I shared my commentary and related LifeWay Research on the top religion news stories of the year. This week, we turn to the top theology stories of the year as compiled by Collin Hansen at The Gospel Coalition. Collin does this each year, and I've interacted a few times with his list. Here is his list with my comments-- be sure to read his whole list for his comments.
10. Christian athlete superstars rise and fall. -- I typically don't write on sports or sports figures, but anytime a Christian athlete starts doing well, you know he'll be on a church sign somewhere.
9. Is Mormonism a cult or not? -- This was one of the most covered topics of the year on the blog. Tal Davis joined me for a special episode of The Exchange, and several articles were written about 2012's Mormon Moment. My comments also made Collin's list.
8. Christians in the Middle East weigh democracy and security.
7. Can American Christianity reverse its declining influence? --This is another major topic with an episode of The Exchange dedicated to "The Rise of the Nones." There was also my editorial in USA Today discussing the trend.
6. We dare defend our rights. -- The Chick-Fil-A controversy in late summer and the subsequent shooting at the Family Research Council were yet more reminders that respectful and civil discussion of issues is essential. We must be able to disagree without demonizing or labeling as "haters" those with whom we disagree.
5. War on Women suffers major defeat.
4. Trinitarian theology responds to recent challenges. -- I've never met T.D. Jakes, but his inclusion in a January simulcast caused quite a stir. Jakes has explicitly said he moved away from a non-trinitiarian position to a Trinitarian one as he studied the scriptures. While many would have loved to hear several other theological issues addressed at the event, you had to at least acknowledge the shift on views of the Trinity-- and that was a move in the right direction.
Also, you can read about some interaction on the "Son of God" translation controversy, sparked by a major Christianity Today story that Collin wrote.
3. Can we be safe? -- The Sandy Hook shooting left us all shaken and hurting. The hurting world needs God's people living as those who care, because we do care. We can't fix everything, but we can do something. Let's grieve with and pray for the hurting. Let's call the world what it is-- broken. Then, let's recommit ourselves to living for Jesus and others in a broken world.
2. Christianity: relationship or religion? -- I had the privilege of meeting Jefferson Bethke when we shot some promotional material for the Gospel Project in the Spring. It's encouraging to see guys like him and others pushing younger Christians into deeper discussions of faith.
1. President Obama rides the rising tide of gay marriage. -- President Obama came out in favor of homosexual marriage in the wake of the vote to ban it in North Carolina. His evolution on this issue was unsurprising, but still important.