But there is also something else happening. A growing number of Americans (nearly a third, according to one Gallop poll) describe themselves as “spiritual but not religious.” Books with titles like “Christianity After Religion,” “Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time,” and “The Underground Church: Reclaiming the Subversive Way of Jesus” are gathering a growing audience. And the Emerging Church movement, seeking to live, as … Continue reading An Emergent Witness for Friends?
1. As we often proclaim, Friends are, for the most part, non-creedal and non-hierarchical. When we are at our best we’ve avoided creeds, and when we are at our worst we’ve just been bad at them. One of the apparent features of the emerging church movement seems to be a general disinterest in formal creedal statements of belief that everyone is expected to conform to … Continue reading An Emergent Witness for Friends…..
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….
Source: Deal Or No Deal? Creed Or No Creed? – QuakerQuaker. “Friends have no creeds.” We Quakers often say that. We are committed to no human words but rather to following the Holy Spirit. We believe God speaks to us today – speaks to all who still their hearts and listen. “No official words can substitute for a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ.” We … Continue reading About Those Creeds….
Source: On a Short Leash – QuakerQuaker. Had occasion to recall a dog that I used to walk. Normally, she was well-behaved and a joy to take to the park. One day, however, this good dog showed a quite different side to her regular disposition. She pulled and pulled and would not stop when I told her to heel. After several attempts at same, I was … Continue reading On A Short Leash…..
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….
Several years ago I came across a small book entitled Quaker Spirituality – Selected Writings. I’m still not sure what made me pause on the title but I am glad I did. Inside that book was an essay by Thomas R. Kelly (1893-1941) talked about the “Eternal Presence”. I didn’t know it then but this essay put me on the path to learning much more about Quakers. … Continue reading Eternal Presence….
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…..
Here is an interesting article from the blog quakerquaker.org that I thought worth putting here. He has quite a few valid arguments but I’m sure most will ignore them due to him coming to the “wrong” conclusion. The Progressive Gospel (according to me) Posted by Dave Salyers on 12th mo. 8, 2011 at 11:00am Send Message View Blog The essence of the Good News of the Gospel as … Continue reading Salvation According to a Progressive Quaker
At the bottom of this post is a link to a heartfelt post by a convinced Quaker. A convinced Quaker is one who has come from outside the sect. In this person’s case it evidently was from Catholicism. This post struck me deeply as I saw myself in much of Laura’s writing. For those not going to the original post here are a couple of quotes that … Continue reading Should this be harder? – Thoughts from a Convinced Quaker
A fellow blogger who happens to be a Quaker asked an interesting question recently. It was “Why didn’t Jesus write a book while he was on earth and settle this thing once and for all?” I know Jesus, like most of the twelve apostles was probably illiterate but I’m sure he could have written a book if he thought it was important. Why didn’t he … Continue reading Why Didn’t Jesus Write a Book??
Many if not most Christian evangelical denominations insist that they are the only ones who 100% understand the nature of God. They each believe everyone else is wrong to one degree or another. There sometimes seems to be more arguing with fellow Christians among themselves than there is any sharing of the Word with those outside their current brand of beliefs. In that regard it … Continue reading You are WRONG!!!
Happy New Year’s everyone! God has given us another year to show the Lord’s love in our lives. Let’s not waste it! This will just be a short post from something I have been reading this afternoon. It is an article in the January 2011 issue of Friends Journal – Quaker Thoughts and Life Today. The article is entitled The Meaning of Universalism by Phil … Continue reading Why Did You Tell Us?…
Speaking up in church is something that varies widely in the Christian world. When my wife and I joined a small startup church eight years ago everyone there felt welcomed to speak up after the service. Since the church was a liturgical one speaking up during the service was a limited to chanting the required verses as they came up in the service text. But … Continue reading Speaking up in church..
Here is a quote by Philip Gulley who is a Quaker minister and author. I couldn’t have said it any better At the end of the day, it is important to remember that while the institutional church is important to us, Jesus appeared to give it little thought. Though the church eventually became the means by which the story and witness of Jesus spread, neither … Continue reading The Institutional Church
The following is actually a comment attached to my April 5 concluding post on Quakerism. I think it is important enough to pull it out and include it as a separate post. Thanks eriu49 for sending it. <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I am very interested in your thoughts about Quakerism. I have been attending Meeting since 1995 and find it meets my needs very well. I found a piece … Continue reading Quakers and the Sacraments…
Ok now on to some of the few things where I feel Quakers beliefs fall a little short . The core of Quakerism is as solid a foundation as I think I have ever come across in Christianity. But, much of it seems to eroded especially during the period between 1800 and 1900. I’m sure there are many meetings that still stick to the core … Continue reading Study of Quakers – Some Personal Thoughts (con’t)
After this fairly thorough study of Quakers I am ready to summarize my personal thoughts on Quakers and their beliefs and practices. First of all I must say that I am very much attuned to most Quaker beliefs. I think that Quakers really understand what Christ taught on how to live our lives. Not only do they believe it but they practice it in their … Continue reading Study of Quakers – Some Personal Thoughts
Before I close out this series with some personal thoughts I wanted to do a quick post here to give you the list of books I have read in order to do these posts. There were also literally hundreds of websites/blogs I visited; too many to mention or name here. Here is the list of books and their authors and some websites. This is by … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 10) Some Source Books and other Miscellaneous things
I want to open this post with some words from http://www.quakerinfo.org/quakerism/Qreligm.html Quakerism depends on neither the Bible nor on priestly tradition. However, Friends do value the Bible and recognize the “priesthood of all believers. Genuine belief cannot be second hand. Quakers believe that the writers of the Bible were inspired by God but the Bible is not the “Word” of God but instead are words … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 8) The Bible
Quakers place a great premium on practicing what they believe. That puts service to others as front and center in their lives. A favorite saying of mine is to “show the Lord’s love in your life”. Quakers definitely live by that motto. Jesus made it abundantly clear that he came to serve and not to be served. He expects each of us to follow his … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 7) Service
Silence is a very strong part of most Quaker beliefs. They very much believe in the bible verse “Be still and know that I am God”. Ps 46:10 This belief is at the very foundation of their weekly worship. Many Christians and non-Christians think that Quaker meetings are very strange indeed that Friends sometimes sit silently during their weekly meetings waiting for God to speak … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 6) Silence, Personal Revelation and Worship
Integrity is another quality that Quakers are universally known for; in particular their refusal to swear to an oath. Of course this is rooted in their total respect for truthfulness. Truth, always spelled with a capital T is a very special word in their vocabulary. The essence of Quakerism is in the demand for complete integrity of the individual in relation to God, and other … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 5) Integrity
Let’s start out this post with a document released by Quakers in 1611: We do testify to the world that the Spirit of Christ which leads us into all truth, will never allow us to fight a war against any man with outward weapons, neither for the Kingdom of Christ nor for the kingdoms of this world. Because Friends, and particularly George Fox their founder, … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 4) Peace
We will continue our study of Quaker Testimonies with the one on Equality. Friends believe that all people are created equal in the eyes of God. Since all people embody the same divine spark all people deserve equal treatment. Friends were some of the first to value women as important ministers and to campaign for women’s rights; they became leaders in the anti-slavery movement, and … Continue reading Study of Quakers – (Part 3) Equality
This is a continuation of my study of Quakers and their beliefs. As I have already mentioned I am by no means an authority on these topics. I am just a guy trying to understand the various views of being a Christian. With that in mind let’s continue our study My wife is a person who occasionally wants to antique. I know, I hear many … Continue reading Study of Quakers (Part 2) – – Simplicity
Most, if not all, of this month I am going to post about Quakers in general and in particular focusing on what they call “Testimonies” and other foundational type things. But I also will be covering some of the things that I believe make Quakers Quakers. I have to start off this series in saying that I am relatively new to much of the Quaker … Continue reading About Those Quakers… – Part 1 (an introduction)