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Greg Horton
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Richard, thanks for the response. The PR comment wasn't directed at you, but at a certain "religion writer" at your fine publication. It is she who writes the PR for Jesus. One would hope that as a real estate writer you are given to avoiding giving credit to one deity or another for buildings, homes, etc., UCC minister or not. The purple prose comment...well, you did write "social ills," and since you weren't redoing "Bleak House," I'll leave that comment intact.
Had you read more than one post, you would know that I've read more Barth than many Reformed folk. God knows Acts 29 and their ilk could use some Barth. However, you don't solve the problem by saying the Bible is a witness to revelation; you only move it back one degree and make it even more unreliable. If it witnesses poorly to the revelation, how do we know there was a revelation at all. I'm almost certain this is the issue the Traditionalists in Islam hoped to avoid by declaring the Qur'an to be the actual words of Allah. As for your "social and intellectual superiority" comment, you have an odd way of communicating without flaming, it seems.
Not that I saw Sent from my iPhone
You'll have to define postmodern, obviously.
I'm fully aware of this. You might remember all the plugs for Driscoll in the book. Belief systems not that different Sent from my iPhone
Chad, you should have a conversation with a couple friends, both pastors. Email me, expastor at gmail, and I'll send you contact info.
Love that quote. I'll be reading about Mr. Weill now. Thanks.
It's probably a huge bias on my part reflected here, but I think those Christians who can more easily disengage the "gospel message" from healing the world do the world a better service. Heal it first. Tell your story second. Or, hell, let the healing speak for you Sent from my iPad
It's likely because I've written about this extensively on this blog for the past ten years, and I find most of the "religion = source of morality" tired and pointless. It's not vacuous to say that you can't tell me which god to pay attention to, nor can you offer a shred of credible evidence that one list of divine commands is better than another. You assume epistemological superiority for theism only because you practice it, not because it's actually superior. Why be good? Because it's easier to get along that way. Most people want to live around other people and get along with them. To do so requires being good according to some definition of the word. Is there a foundation for ethics? Sure. Reciprocity and value of human life. I want all people to share the same rights and privileges I enjoy--a truth most theists struggle with, quite frankly. I've explained a hundred times in this forum what I think morality is. You'll forgive me for not doing it again. I apologize that you don't have the writings here as a background, but I can't answer all the questions by starting at the beginning. What I've said here should provide a pretty good idea of what I mean. Show me a list of the rules I ought to believe, and tell me why one god is better than another, and then offer evidence that any of that is true, and we can have a solid discussion of why I ought to be a theist. Please avoid the tired old defense of "what do you base your morals on if not a transcendent reality?" defense if you have no intention of producing that transcendent reality. I'm not a relativist, but I also recognize that no system has a really good answer for this dilemma, so offering an invisible deity that sort of agrees with you isn't really compelling evidence for your case.
I said fine in the soteriological sense, not ethical. They don't need saving; they do need work. That is apparent to anyone who looks at humanity. The perversity of Christianity's modern metanarrative is that they need Jesus, not to be better people. We're left with asshats believing they're going to heaven, and Christianity seems to lack any coherent narrative about why they ought to be good now, at least any narrative that encourages actual growth in ethics. I don't need a metaphysical basis for "good." It works far better being defined by how it affects people in this world, not about how competing deities define it, all of whom are unavailable to attest to or demonstrate the truth of their system of "goodness" over against that of the other members of the universal pantheon.
Thanks, Joel. I appreciate it. Sent from my iPad
Your ideas are interesting but I don't trust anonymous posters Sent from my iPhone
Thanks. It's good to be back writing. Sorry it took me a bit to get back to this. I actually have things to write for which I receive money. I guess you could say there is a consistent message in parts of the Bible that god champions the oppressed, but it's not "the Biblical narrative." I think the very idea of a single Biblical narrative is fundamentally flawed, and that's part of the problem of looking for the "scarlet thread of redemption" in the text. As for catharsis, I don't know if it's impenetrable. The idea was that our reasons for believing aren't always or even usually consciously known. We believe or not for a multitude of reasons. Sent from my iPad
Bethany, Revivalism usually begins with Billy Sunday and moves forward from there. It's not as if the Second Great Awakening didn't have components of Revivalism, but much of that movement was grounded in Reformed theology. Modern Revivalism is cooperative in theological structure, not Reformed. The event was about getting conversions, so the Gospel message is truncated and becomes one of immediate salvation now as opposed to a more comprehensive approach. Something like that. I'll flesh that out later.
Well, Rob, Warren or some Warrenite called them "ranchers." Because, of course. I loved Peterson in my pastoring days. What a great pastor he was.
I'll not improve on Cheek's words there. Amen.
If you mean his role in the end helping the Mahdi, that's more of a John the Baptist thing. It's clear Muslims and Christians mean something vastly different when they talk about Jesus. Sent from my iPhone
Well, Tim, with that rubric to guide your thinking, I guess we'll have to wait 'til the end to find out why slavery was totally fine with god, too.
It's not crossover. If I follow your logic, pedophiles who molest opposite sex victims are evidence that heterosexuality is destructive to our culture. That's a pretty clear and damning counterexample.
I'm very sorry for what happened to you but pedophilia is not the same thing as homosexuality. Sent from my iPhone
Kevin, that seems pretty irrelevant. Do you mean to imply that the church should be able to teach shit that's wrong as long as they can justify it internally? I mean justification in the epistemological sense, as I usually do. If you can't make a case for it, why are you teaching it? If you can't make a case for it, why are you taking a public position on it? If it's without merit, it's without merit. How did the church/denomination announce it was wrong about slavery? This is not difficult stuff. Curious about your "clarifying" questions.
Matt, good clarifying question. No, he doesn't have to deconstruct the faith itself, but he started to deconstruct the grammar when he has god show up as a woman in The Shack. If the grammar of faith is the way it's worked out in the world, it's possible to go after cardinal doctrines without tearing the whole thing down. Take for example substitutionary atonement. We could do away with that doctrinal assumption and leave intact "God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself." It's simple a matter of going after the grammar as opposed to the proposition. I guess it's the difference between attacking what is meant as opposed to what is said. I think there is plenty of room for both--clearly, as I'm not a Christian--but if Young wants to offer some new insight, he has to at least do the former.
It's a possible rejoinder. Young wasn't the only elite. Track them from Navuoo to Missouri to Utah and see how many died along the way. Smith and his brother were considered early martyrs for the cause, so Smith died for his own lie. This has nothing to do with the truth or falsity of Christianity. I mean only to say that the "no one would died for a lie" schtick so long trotted out by apologists is nonsense. I'm weary of it being offered as a "proof" or "evidence" of the resurrection.
Leighton, he called it snooping. I honestly can't remember if it was in the book or just in the promo/interview material I had to read too.
Toggle Commented Oct 18, 2012 on The Cross in the Closet: A Review at the parish
Matt, yes, he does, at length. He takes the fake boyfriend to minimize romantic damage to others, and then he is very straightforward about his fears about hurting the ones he lies to. Some are upset when he comes clean, but most believe he did the right thing and are forgiving. It would be hard to be mad at someone for long who had tried his best to understand your pain, I suppose.
Toggle Commented Oct 17, 2012 on The Cross in the Closet: A Review at the parish