Freedom from a Punishing God

When you’re a Christian preacher sometimes you get a real earful concerning the nature of the Christian God. Things like this, “I despise the Christian God with his arbitrary judgments. This God who makes people feel ashamed of who they are and doles out punishments to the guilty. Guilty of what, being human? I want [Read More...]

How Do We Make Ethical Choices

I’m not supposed to like Sam Harris – you know, “End of Faith,” Sam Harris, the guy who slices and dices mythical constructions of faith and concludes therefore that religion has nothing to offer. I’m not supposed to like him, but I do. Of course if religion had only mythic constructions of reality to offer, [Read More...]

Rodin’s Hand of God

We no longer live in a world where we think of God as that old gentleman wandering about in the Garden of Eden, looking for the creature He created from mud and His own life giving breath. No, we now know about the evolution of human life, with its genetic mutations, environmental factors and the [Read More...]

A Note to the Spiritual But Not Religious

It is not an easy case to make, I’ll grant, not easy to support the claim that Christianity has something left to offer to those identifying themselves as “Spiritual But Not Religious” (SBNR). And so as I begin this new blog, I intend to offer a basic rationale, a “theological framework,” to help the reader [Read More...]

Done With Substitutionary Atonement – Really Done

I’m done with Substitutionary atonement. I’m done with the magical notion that human beings need to sacrifice in order to appease an angry God. Sixteen people died at the hands of Sgt. Bales last week. Sixteen innocent Afghanis dead. It’s not entirely clear what happened, but one thing we can say: life had betrayed Sgt. [Read More...]

Resonance and Dissonance Between the World’s Great Religions

Religion. The very word strikes fear in the hearts of your average citizen . . . or boredom, or maybe confusion. My Uncle Joel, a Chemistry professor at UC Berkeley, kept a scrapbook of clippings he said proved religion to be the root cause of humanity’s ills. And who could blame him? The traditionalist mindset [Read More...]

A Review of Integral Christianity by Paul Smith

I’d like to be able to thank Rev. Smith for taking a stab at describing “Integral Christianity.” We do after all need to reach for meaning beyond the orthodox – liberal – neo-Orthodox debate which has mired the church in endless, pointless controversy, controversy which has eviscerated our congregations at the very time our society [Read More...]

An Open Letter to Evangelicals, (sort of)

I need a little help over here on the dark side in liberal, post-liberal, or whatever you want to call it, land. I guess it all started when my wife died and I realized one of two things was true: either the God Id been talking about lo those many years the Father God who [Read More...]

An Open Letter to Girls Becoming Women

I worry about a world where the feminine – especially the young feminine – lives so much of the time in the darkness of sexual shadow. This is an open letter to girls becoming women. It is an invitation for you to come into the light and be seen for what you are – the [Read More...]

No Anthropomorphic God? Now What?

I spoke last week about false hope implicit in an anthropomorphic God. It boiled down to this: I don’t believe that God, the magic god, exists; God is not a Father or a Lord, though I think we can, and inevitably do, describe God in those ways. This week several people said to me in [Read More...]


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