Are Church and Society Collapsing Together?

On Facebook, I had my attention drawn to an interesting article by Margaret Wente about the decline of the liberal church, focusing on the United Church of Canada. It is an interesting article, but it deserves to be read carefully, since it acknowledges that pretty much the only churches not in decline are connected with [Read More...]

“Folks Haven’t Been Reading Their Bibles” – Barack Obama on Religion and Public Policy

  Someone made the above quote from then senator Barack Obama into a poster. It illustrates what those who are intimately acquainted with the Bible and its interpretation see clearly, but religious fundamentalists less familiar with their own Scriptures often miss, namely that it is not at all straightforward to derive a clear set of [Read More...]

If the Church Were Christian

Philip Gulley's book If The Church Were Christian makes many challenging points. Here are some of them, in Gulley's own words, turned into a poster by one Facebook group and shared with me by another. What do you think of his points?   [Read more...]

Paul’s Inclusive Vision

Since someone made this image and shared it on Facebook, but with the quote attributed to someone else. Since the quote is from me (made in this post), I thought I’d modify it in the hope that eventually one or more with the correct attribution will predominate… [Read more...]

Conservatives, Liberals, and the 50 Shades of Grey Between Them

A substantial part of the Christian blogosphere has been distracted from further discussion of Ross Douthat’s piece on Liberal Christianity, by a conservative Christian blog post about the novel Fifty Shades of Grey. I have not read the novel, but from reading the blog post in question, the reactions to it, and the follow-up from [Read More...]

Don’t Let the Fact That Paul’s Letters are Now Christian Scripture Undermine Their Message and Authority!

Paul, in his time, made a case for relaxing Scriptural stipulations about the need for anyone within Abraham's household to be circumcised in order to be part of the covenant (Genesis 17:9-14). He did the same with regard to the people of God being called to observe the things written in the Law of Moses, [Read More...]

And Still More on (and from!) Ross Douthat and the Future of Denominations and Christianity

Late yesterday I posted a round-up of links on this topic, and already there are enough for another, just on blogs to which I subscribe! First, let me mention that Ross Douthat himself has written a follow-up piece, “What Is Liberal Christianity?”┬áIn it his primary conversation partner is Steven Holmes, a British Baptist who wrote [Read More...]

“Ross Douthat is a Fruit Fly” and Other Responses Around the Blogosphere

There have been quite a few responses and reactions to Ross Douthat's New York Times piece since I posted my own response and round-up (as there have been other responses to other reporting on the recent Episcopal General Convention here in Indianapolis). There are several excellent ones, but the most striking title award goes to [Read More...]

Can Non-Liberal Christianity Be Saved?

I shared Ross Douthat’s recent New York Times piece, asking whether Liberal Christianity can be saved, on Facebook, and it has generated quite a lot of response. Let me start by sharing some thoughts of my own, and then share a number of links to blog posts and articles elsewhere that relate to this topic. [Read More...]

A Guide to Dealing with Inconvenient Bible Passages

Stephen Savage shared this with me on Facebook:   Ouch! Satire is most effective when it hits painfully close to home. Does this seem to get things about right to you?   As a liberal Christian, I think it is better to honestly disagree with the Bible, than to engage in the selective Biblicism that [Read More...]

Religion, Reform, and Retention

On Facebook, Karl Giberson shared a link to a blog post with statistics about retention in religious and areligious groups, i.e. their effectiveness in passing on their worldview and communal identity to their children. Here is the relevant chart: There is a lot that is interesting and potentially worth talking about. I suspect that for [Read More...]


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