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The Table Video

James Houston, Bruce Hindmarsh& Steve L. Porter

A Faith 3,000 miles wide, but 1 inch deep - James Houston and Bruce Hindmarsh

Emeritus Professor of Spiritual Theology, Regent College
James M. Houston Professor of Spiritual Theology, Regent College
CCT Scholar-in-Residence and Executive Board Member / Professor of Theology, Spiritual Formation, and Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology and at Rosemead School of Psychology, Biola University
November 25, 2013

James Houston and Bruce Hindmarsh, both professors of spiritual theology at Regent College, comment on the differences between space and place and the impact on what it means for relationships and faith. Moderated by Steve Porter (CCT Associate Director).


Jim, one time you said, and perhaps you were quoting someone else, but something to the effect that, is it Evangelicalism in North America is 3000 miles wide and only an inch deep. And I’m wondering if I got the dimensions right, if what your assessment would be today. How are we doing?

Well, in all credit to him, it was Jim Packard.

Jim Packard originally said.

That originally said that, and I loved it as a quotation so I’ve used it too. But it’s the recognition that too much space doesn’t give much opportunity for place. And human place is much more limited. So when we were coming over from England with our young family, the thing that my wife most wept about was, how can I bring up a family on a continent? And I think the intensity of traffic this weekend for Thanksgiving indicates that it’s a huge issue in America. So–

Spoken as a true geographer.


That’s right.

Place is not space. Place has very limited space for genuine relationships. So that’s the neighbor, the neighbor concept is the one who’s contingent to me. [gentle music]