The Sola’s…How Did We Get Here?

Gulley, Philip; Mulholland, James —  If Grace Is True: Why God Will Save Every Person We are not to worship the Bible; we are to worship the One the Bible reveals. Too often, we clutch desperately to our Bibles, memorizing only those verses that support our views and panicking when anyone suggests God might speak a fresh word. We belong to a long tradition of … Continue reading The Sola’s…How Did We Get Here?

Ask Shane Claiborne…(Response)

Source: Ask Shane Claiborne…(Response). You also see in Scripture that when people encounter Jesus, they don’t all walk away to pursue the exact same lifestyle. For instance, Jesus dealt with two tax collectors—Matthew and Zaccheus. Matthew chose to sell everything, but Zaccheus, from what we know, sold half of everything, paid everyone four times what he owed them, and then went on. So they both reimagine … Continue reading Ask Shane Claiborne…(Response)

Religious Superiority….

Here are some thoughts from Randy Oftedahl over at QuakerQuaker: Now I believe there are many paths, and God in His love for human variety has given us an infinate number of ways to follow the Spirit, depending on what best speaks to our condition. But sometimes I think Quakers, perhaps because we have a particular history as a “peculiar people” or more distinctive worship … Continue reading Religious Superiority….

The Church and Evolution….

I know you expect this post to be about how the church is very much against the idea of evolution. But really it is going to be quite the opposite. Yes, many denominations within the church, like so many other areas of science, deny evolution of the species as originated by Darwin. The Scopes Monkey trial was evidence of that. William Jennings Bryan put up … Continue reading The Church and Evolution….

Man’s Fingerprints…..

One thing that seems so hard for many fundamentalist Christians is the idea that much of their religious traditions and beliefs come from man, not God. They seem totally unable to even conceive of that idea. Without that acknowledgement they have doomed their version of Christianity to the trash heap of time. Science, that they generally deem as the enemy, will eventually become just be … Continue reading Man’s Fingerprints…..

Inclusiveness…..

Despite recent trends the U.S. is still pretty much an inclusive society. As the saying on the plaque at the Statue Of Liberty goes we welcome all others to our shores. The resulting diversity is in my mind one of the primary reasons we have been such a strong and prosperous country. Elitism is by definition exclusive. It wants more and more for a smaller and … Continue reading Inclusiveness…..

Not to Confuse Jesus With the Packaging….

I want to spend this post telling you a little more about today’s emergent churches. No, this is not just a different denomination coming onto the scene but instead is a paradigm shift taking place in the church itself and many times within existing church structures, even at the individual congregational level. Let’s look as some more words about this from Harvey Cox in his … Continue reading Not to Confuse Jesus With the Packaging….

Those Non-Western Christians…

Anyone who has read much of this blog knows that I take the creeds of the Christian church to have done more harm than good.  Here are some words about that by Harvey Cox in his book The Future of Faith: Creeds were always something theologians invented, often to stake out spheres of authority. The vast body of lay Christians knew little about them and … Continue reading Those Non-Western Christians…

Mary Dyer….. Heretic… Quaker….

I am a regular reader of a Quaker blog called Quaker Quaker. On a recent posting  by Mac Lemann I learned a little about Mary Dyer. Here are some of his words from that post: I had recently re-learned, at Pendle Hill from Marcelle Martin, the story of Mary Dyer and the other Quaker martyrs hung on Boston Common. Mary was a follower of Anne Hutchinson … Continue reading Mary Dyer….. Heretic… Quaker….

Institutional Purity…..

The primary reason there are 39,000+ Christian denominations is that each are trying to maintain “purity” of beliefs. Here is how that logic usually plays out: ” If we allow differences of opinions among us then we will soon reach a slippery slope where we will slide into heresy. For that reason we must be on the constant watch to exclude anyone among us who … Continue reading Institutional Purity…..

The Fourth Rummage Sale??…..The Emergent Church of the 21st Century

This post is about the fourth great rummage sale and that is the “Great Emergence”. In this post I am only giving you a small taste of the emergent movement In future posts we will look at just what the Great Emergence is and where it is going. Lets start off this post again with some words by Phyllis Tickle in her book The Great … Continue reading The Fourth Rummage Sale??…..The Emergent Church of the 21st Century

The First Rummage Sale ….The Dark Ages…

Continuing with our study of the “rummage sales” within the Christian church every five hundred years lets look at the first one.  Before we start I will admit that I didn’t know much about this period of time before this study so I relied on several books on the shelves behind me and in my Kindle to help me understand.  I will put those references … Continue reading The First Rummage Sale ….The Dark Ages…

Following the Examples of Jesus….

Here is a quote by Philip Gulley in his book entitled The Evolution of Faith – How God is creating a better Christianity that will be used for this discussion. To be sure, if one believes Christianity is primarily about worshipping Jesus, a faith that incorporates other religious traditions will be considered heretical. But if one believes Christianity is primarily about following the example of … Continue reading Following the Examples of Jesus….

Saving Jesus — (Part 5) Heaven and the Threat of Hell….

This is the fifth post on the book Saving Jesus from the Church: How to Stop Worshiping Christ and Start Following Jesus  by Robin Meyers.  While I could go on and on I am going to stop this review here. The following will serve as the focus for this post: Some belong to churches that explicitly emphasize the hope of heaven and the threat of hell. Others … Continue reading Saving Jesus — (Part 5) Heaven and the Threat of Hell….

Saving Jesus — (Part 4) Science is Not the Enemy…..

This is the fourth post on the book Saving Jesus from the Church: How to Stop Worshiping Christ and Start Following Jesus  by Robin Meyers: One thing every pastor knows is that knowledge is not redemptive. Indeed, sometimes we can know the truth, and it will not set us free…. One of the great divides in the church could be overcome if we got one … Continue reading Saving Jesus — (Part 4) Science is Not the Enemy…..

Sheer Christianity….

I came across an article entitled Sheer Christianity in the November 2012 Sojourners Magazine that moved me. I want to tell you a little about it and quote some of the inspiring words. It is by Wesley Granberg-Michaelson who is the general secretary of the Reformed Church of America. I have to admit that I don’t know much about this organization.  Here is a quote … Continue reading Sheer Christianity….

Religionless Christianity???

Toward the end of his life, while in a Nazi prison, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was a well known Lutheran theologian, wrote some tantalizing letters to his friend Eberhad Bethage where he wrestles with what he calls “religionless Christianity.”The letters in question were written in 1944 not long before he was executed by the Nazi’s. What did Bohhoeffer mean by Religionless Christianity? Here are some of the words … Continue reading Religionless Christianity???

Christians Doing Risky Things….

No this post is not about anything in today’s world. There are some Christians who are on evangelism missions abroad who are doing risky things but for the most part Christians are pretty well settled down in their safe lives much like everyone else in this country.  But that definitely was not the case for many in the early church. Here are some words about … Continue reading Christians Doing Risky Things….

And Its All Small Stuff…..

In 1997 Richard Carlson wrote a very popular book entitled Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff…. and it’s all small stuff. In that book he listed one hundred things to make our lives more peaceful. Some of those topics that I took to heart included: Let Others Be “Right” Most of the Time Learn to Live in the Present Moment Surrender to the Fact that Life Isn’t … Continue reading And Its All Small Stuff…..

A New/Old Kind of Christianity

From A New Kind of Christianity: Ten Questions That Are Transforming the Faith  by Brian D. McLaren: We’re following the best Christian tradition of going back to Jesus and the Scriptures, so our quest for a new kind of Christianity is, in fact, a most conservative quest. In our return to our roots, however, we’re not writing off all the great sages, scholars, and saints … Continue reading A New/Old Kind of Christianity

Don’t Take It Literally….

There are many today who believe that all of the Bible must be taken as absolutely happening and the stories are without the possibility of error. But this is not the case with many of us follower of Jesus.. Several of the early fathers of the church warned against taking things literally. One of those was Origen. Here is a quote from People’s History of … Continue reading Don’t Take It Literally….

The Kingdom of God…..

Of course all Christians recognize the phrase the kingdom of God from the Lord’s prayer. But the interpretation of that phrase seems to vary considerably depending on what version of Christianity you follow. Here is what Martin Luther said about it in his small catechism: Your Kingdom Come on earth as it is in heaven: What does this mean?  The kingdom of God certainly comes … Continue reading The Kingdom of God…..

Shouldn’t you read Paul in light of Jesus, instead of reading Jesus in light of Paul?”

I started out my Spiritual journey as a Catholic because that is what my parents were. I came to find out that they were only tepid Catholic as they really didn’t go to church themselves very often but more often just dropped us off and then went home.  Upon entering high school I went about twenty years moving between an inactive Christian and an agnostic … Continue reading Shouldn’t you read Paul in light of Jesus, instead of reading Jesus in light of Paul?”

A New Direction…. Again….

In recent days I have been getting frustrated by the progress I have made into the parallel studies of the Roman empire and the Christian church. It is not that I am not learning things it is just that it is taking longer than I originally anticipated. My wife claims that I always underestimate these sort of things and maybe I do 🙂  I certainly … Continue reading A New Direction…. Again….

What Language Did Adam & Eve Speak??

Some Christians believe that each and every word in the Bible is literally true and without error. Even though I did not believe in a literal Bible I belonged to one of those churches at one time. I often asked embarrassing questions during our weekly bible study. Questions the clergy leader really didn’t care to try to answer.  Asking those questions is probably one of the reasons … Continue reading What Language Did Adam & Eve Speak??